Ahead of their hotly anticipated new studio album: ‘Motherbrain’, Pennsylvanian rockers Crobot turned up the London heat with a hotter than hell show in the dark, dank bowels of Camden Town’s Underworld.
Obeying the ‘No Crowd Surfing/Stage Diving’ notices inside this netherworld, there was more dandruff flying around the Underworld than a Head and Shoulders advert with the mosh pit mass of hairy headbanging going on.
And, judging by the new songs aired tonight, that is just what Crobot seem to be: head and shoulders above their fellow up and coming down and dirty rockers.
Changes have also been afoot in the Crobot camp with a rhythm section revolving door. Out with the old bass and drums and in with the new, as bassist Eddie Collins and drummer Dan Ryan lock and load into a head down, floor-shaking, foot-stomping, ear-blasting rumble of noise.
There is a heady barrel load of fun as demonstrated by the onstage antics between singer Brandon Yeagley and guitarist Chris Bishop (tattooist by day, a needle-sharp sonic soldier by night). Bishop constantly whips his axe around his body (clearly a Jannick Gers fan?) whilst Yeagley reels in his microphone as it totters at the edge of the stage; threatening to lamp the nearest headbanger.
Dressed in an aqua blue/green scaley waistcoat, big hairy cheek chops and long black hair, Yeagley could be mistaken for an outcast from old Neptune’s deep-sea underworld grotto; especially when imitating an aquatic mammal with his body-popping stage floor swimming moves.
The blend of old and new songs pleasantly revealed a more straight-ahead dirty heavy rock direction. In fact, the searing riffed up new songs threatened to distress and rip the plaster from the ceiling.
Funnily enough, this was fitting, as another impulsive manoeuvre by Yeagley found him leaping onto the shoulders of Bishop; only to discover there wasn’t enough room for his head to fit under the ceiling as he awkwardly felt his way across decades of sweat-drenched plaster.
From the instant they launched into ‘Legend of the Spaceborne Killer’, to begin an hour-long set of incendiary noise, the whole club swayed and staggered like a legendary vessel of demonic, rockin’, musical voyagers.
New songs, from their upcoming ‘Motherbrain’ release, went down as satisfyingly well as a vat of free JD & Coke with their hardcore base.
‘Burn’, ‘Keep Me Down’, ‘Alpha Dawg’ and new single ‘Lowlife’, reek of the sweet stench of buzzsaw rock that possesses much, much more than the usual dog whistle, come all ye faithful holding pattern of songs that some bands formularise.
These are full tilt, rollicking, eardrum bashing bangers!
Furthermore, the infectious onstage antics also permeated the music as these Pottsville Crobotters broke into the ‘Ghostbusters’ theme, then a snatch of Sabbath’s ‘The Wizard’ and, the coup-de-grace, repeatedly bouncing around the guitar riff/motif of Toto’s ‘Africa’.
Older songs, for a band on their fourth album, still get to see the light of day as the raucous riffs to ‘La Mano de Lucifer’ and ‘Plague of the Mammoths’ melted the ears and brain cells in tonight’s cave of cacophony.
Afterwards, Yeagley and Co. amiably wandered around the venue chatting with and posing for photos with their faithful fans.
Heartwarming, big buzzing riffs and a zany, crazy and infectious stage presence, Crobot is a fiery breath of fresh air to a scene that needs a band with these friendly credentials to lead a genre into a new era of cranium banging music.
Motherbrain is released on the Mascot label on August 23rd.
Event Date: 26-July-2019