On an evening where the majority of the UK concerned itself with the general election, there was no such divide and uncertainty at the O2 Kentish Town Forum. Motionless In White arrived on their Disguise tour and they provided quite the distraction to those in attendance. There was nothing conservative about their performance with a great deal of labour on show from start to finish. Enough of the political puns though, here’s the run-down of what happened in Kentish Town.
Those that arrive early are able to catch, Defying Decay, an alternative Thai metal band that weren’t given much publicity regarding this support slot. Many appear surprised to see them and many seem surprised at how effective they are as an opening act. By their own admission towards the end of their set, this is the biggest show of their lives. They appear to relish in this and make the most of this opportunity, with an abundance of energy combined with a visible humble appreciation to those present for their slot.
Next up is Skold, the solo project of Swedish producer and singer/songwriter Tim Skold. Skold’s industrial metal echoes throughout the venue, every note haunting and unhinged. There is a large crowd present for Skold, whose career has spanned the last 3 decades and seen him work with a host of big names in the metal scene. Despite the reputation of Skold, the crowd feels as though it has gone slightly flat. The quality is clear for all to see but following the energetic opening act, Defying Decay, this change in sound and tempo feels like a false dawn for a crowd with a lot of energy to burn.
Motionless In White take to the stage soon after and the crowd erupts as the metalcore outfit showcase why they’re a band at the top of their game. The visual aesthetics of the band are impressive as ever. This tour supports their 2019 release Disguised and they play all but 2 songs off of the album. Opening with the heavy ‘Undead Ahead 2: The Tale of the Midnight Ride’ is the perfect choice, as the pit opens up and all in attendance know what kind of show they’re in for. Tracks such as ‘Brand New Numb’ and ‘</c0de>’ from their latest release receive a great reception from the crowd and really showcase the vocal ability of Chris Cerulli.
‘Voices’ and ‘Reincarnate’ at opposite ends of the setlist are tracks that bring out the best in the crowd. The venue sing in unison at the top of their lungs and the band appear to feed off of this energy. There’s a real connection between the crowd and the Pennsylvania five-piece during these performances in particular. When frontman Chris Cerulli takes a moment to talk the crowd it is clear that Motionless In White know that they owe so much to their fans. Cerulli shares his disbelief that MIW fans have amassed over a million views on their new video for latest single ‘Afterlife’ in just over a week and the crowd feel the love and appreciation pouring out his mouth. The decibel levels must double as the band announce they’re about to play this very song live for the first time right now. The performance is fantastic and is ultimately the stand-out performance of the night.
Skold makes another appearance later in the set as he joins Motionless In White on stage for their track ‘The Final Dictvm’ which they collaborated together on for their 2014 release, Reincarnate. The performance is bursting at the seams with Skold’s corrosive industrial vibe and fans relish the rare opportunity of seeing the original collaborators play the track live together. The encore song and final of the night is ‘Eternally Yours’. The melodic metalcore track feels a very fitting way to end the night and the crowd scream in appreciation of the show they have just witnessed.
Motionless In White’s show at O2 Kentish Town Forum felt like it gave an extremely passionate fan-base to show their appreciation for a fantastic album, Disguise, and for a band that seem to be improving with every release. Be sure to keep an eye on any future tour dates and check them out live if you get the chance.