Stone Sour & The Pretty Reckless Live @ Brixton Academy 4th December 2017

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Stone Sour 2017 press shot credit Travis Shinn

It’s been a little while since the U.K has had Stone Sour on its shores. Judging by the level of anticipation surrounding this tour, you could say people are a little bit excited to have them back. Tonight is the first of two stops in London at the famed Brixton Academy and is one of the biggest shows they have played here.  Before we get to revel in the return of Stone Sour though, there is the little matter of tonight’s opening act The Pretty Reckless (8).

As with Stone Sour, it’s been a little while since we have seen Taylor Momsen and her band of merry men, but it seems a little time away has done them the world of good. I have seen them several times over the years, but they had kind of fallen off my radar, but tonight they seem like an entirely different band altogether. They seem sharper, heavier and a lot more put together than on previous encounters. Taylor works the crowd like a pro, having really grown as a frontwoman over the years, she displays a much more mature and confident figure as she struts up and down the stage. Despite her best efforts to get the crowd invested, they give her almost nothing in return, only really coming alive on the finale of ‘Make me wanna die’. Its a shame to see them given such a lukewarm reception, because based on tonight’s evidence they would be headlining this venue with ease on another night.

We all know who everyone is here to see and that is Stone Sour (9). It seems apt that this current tour is sponsored by Zippo because Stone Sour are on fire tonight. Opening with a raucus ‘Taipei Person/Allah Tea’ from current album ‘Hydrograd’, it lays the stall out early and only slightly prepares you for the set to come.

The great thing about Stone Sour headlining a venue like this at this stage in their career is the sheer amount of crowd pleasing anthems they now have in their arsenal, covering all aspects of their musical spectrum. There are genuine bangers in the form of ‘Say You’ll Haunt Me’, ‘Made of Scars’ and ‘Get Inside’, while there are also truly spine tingling moments of ‘Hesitate’ and ‘Through Glass’ which both manage to give the heartstrings a good old tug, and in the case of the latter provide a venue wide sing along.

Moving on, The House of Gold and Bones saga gets a welcome inclusion in the form of my personal favourite ‘Tired’ and ‘Do me a Favour’ both of which are underrated, rarely played gems, so it was nice to have them aired tonight. There are also some outrageously fun moments here as well, ‘Song #3’ and ‘Rose Red, Violent Blue (This song is dumb and so am I)’ are both cheeky little anthems that show just how much fun there was had by all on the new album. But the real crowning moment comes during ‘Fabuless’ where the band unleashes an army of wacky waving inflatable arm tube men onto the stage which sends everyone home with a smile on their faces.

Stone Sour are on the form of their lives. Lineup changes and being absent for awhile have done them the world of good, as they have come back as a band that while being tight as hell seem to be a hell of a lot lighter and much more fun onstage. Between the onstage banter and the smiles plastered all over the bands faces, you can just see how much they are enjoying themselves and the crowd is having the absolute time of their lives along with them. Its a symbiotic exchange of energy between band and fans that combines to create and electrifying atmosphere and one hell of a way to spend a Monday evening.

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