Live Review: Rolo Tomassi @ Rescue Rooms

Jake Longhurst gives his take on Rolo Tomassi's performance at Rescue Rooms.

For the first time in a long long while, I managed to miss one of the support bands at a concert. I was practising with my own band, and it meant that I unfortunately missed the brilliant Heriot, although I have been assured they were outstanding, and I am planning on seeing them at Download Festival later this year. I did, however, manage to see almost the entirety of the Pupil Slicer set, as well as all of Rolo Tomassi’s show, and I was blown away.

Pupil Slicer are an outstanding example of British metal, mixing death and grind with mathcore to devastating effect, and this shone during their decimating live set. Their lead singer and guitarist, Kate Davies, was brilliant, with her vocals causing all sorts of neck injuries from over-excited head-banging. Even though the setlist was only six songs long, it was more than enough to demonstrate the frenetic intensity of a truly awesome live band. Luke Fabian was providing an incredible bottom end on his bass, and his vocals were also just as gnarly, bringing the band’s music further into the collective conscious of the metal world. Josh Andrews provided the aural equivalent of an artillery battery from behind his kit, and Frank Muir was an imposing figure, doing a brilliant job as a touring guitarist and cutting a massive silhouette on stage, so his presence was keenly felt. If you get the opportunity to see this group, you would be wise to take it.

''Bringing the band’s music further into the collective conscious of the metal world''

I was also lucky enough to be able to briefly catch Kate for a chat after the gig, and for a band on their first tour she seemed very composed. We had a talk about the band and their future, and I asked about the plans for an upcoming album, to which Kate said they are on track to start recording it this year, with demos being sorted out now, and more of their own sound comparatively to the first album, Mirrors, which wore its influences very much on its sleeve. I also asked about the possibility of an upcoming headline tour, which sadly I was told won’t be happening till at least next year, although the band are also hoping to get to America at some point, and to that I wish them enormous luck!

After that exquisite showing of heaviness, it was Rolo Tomassi’s turn to dominate the Rescue Rooms stage. They demonstrated a masterful command over the subtleties of live musicianship, expertly balancing the light and dark of their vastly contrasting musical catalogue. Closer, the centrepiece of their phenomenal new album Where Myth Becomes Memory, proved to be an atmospheric, calming and soulful moment within a set that otherwise was fairly heavily dominated by choking growls, vicious riffs and fantastically heavy music. Opener Cloaked, the lead single from the new album, was as good as any song I’ve ever seen live, and the encore of Drip into A Flood Of Light was an incredible way to finish a set.

I thoroughly enjoyed this brilliant collection of British metal bands, and I cannot wait to see any and all of these bands again as soon as possible. Rescue Rooms was shown how metal should be played, and everyone who bore witness will definitely remember this concert for a long time to come.

Jake Longhurst


Edited by: Amrit Virdi

Featured image and in-article images and videos courtesy of Rolo Tomassi via Facebook and YouTube.