Polar, Giants, Empires Fade and My Only @ Camden Black Heart, 5th March

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Over the past few years, Polar have been one of the most hard working bands in the UK. Near endless touring has helped them gain a dedicated following that has helped them play their second sold out headline show in London.

My Only (5) struggle as openers tonight. Their take on melodic hardcore is solid and their songs have some impressive moments. But it feels like their vocalist seems a struggle a bit. His enthusiasm and stage presence is engaging but he just doesn’t quite have enough power in his vocals to really nail the songs. With a bit of work, My Only could be really solid band but they just aren’t quite there yet.

Empires Fade (6.5) fare better as they deliver 30 minutes of bludgeoning metalcore. It might be fairly by the numbers but it is performed with such conviction and things never become too dreary or repetitive. The melodic sections are catchy enough while the breakdowns and riffs have enough swagger to them. It’s far from a great set but is an ideal warm up for tonights crowd.

Giants (8) are easily the most entertaining of the support bands. Blending skate punk and hardcore with great effects, Giants tear through a great 30 minute set rarely pausing to catch their breath. Tons of catchy hooks throughout the set mixed with riffs that should be perfect for moshing to. It’s a huge shame that the crowd just don’t seem to respond until the very end of the set. Closing song Another Day, Another Year is certainly the highlight as the crowd finally start moshing along but that’s not to say the rest of their set is disappointing at all. Giants continue to be one of the UK’s hardest working DIY bands really looking to break through to the next level.

Polar (9) have been fighting hard to get noticed for years now and it still feels like the band are yet to have their moment. However they have built up a dedicated fanbase who are out in force tonight as as the Black Heart is completely rammed to capacity. Within seconds of opener Blood For Blood it’s clear just how important this show is for Polar. Vocalist Woody is on top of the crowd almost immediately and the band are so fired up. This intensity is met by the crowd who scream every word right back at the band tonight. There isn’t a single dip in the entire set tonight as Polar cram as many songs from their last two albums into an hour. Their energy seems limitless tonight as the Black Heart turns into a sweaty mess of a venue. Woody even manages to break part of the lighting rig during one of his many stage dives tonight. Black Days still remains the highlight of Polar’s set and tonight feels even more special as Woody gets right in with the crowd for a sing along. Their performance tonight proves exactly why shows like this matter so much to Polar and their fans. They might not be the biggest band in the UK but the level of dedication on display from both the band and their fans is something few bands can match.

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