Joiners Arms, Southampton
If you aren’t yet aware of the huge impact William Control is making, you must be living under a rock; the kind of rock exploding in synths, and covered in black lace.
Driving down the road on the 15th June, it was obvious which building was Southampton Joiners as the mass of people in black, red and grey seemed to be a dark luminous signpost defining that this was indeed the venue that William Control was playing at that evening.
To open the night up, first on were a band playing their hometown, Dead, who have over the past few months not taken a break from building up their fanbase and exploiting their music. Unfortunately Dead seemed to take a while to get into gear, but with the fans in the crowd who knew what Dead were capable of, this didn’t seem to make anyone leave the crowd or lose attention.
After an energetic set that included their well-known first demo, Damned Restless Future, along with some of their other songs, they also threw in a cover of Panic At The Disco’s “We Write Sins Not Tragedies” with Ashestoangel’s very own lead singer Crilly doing guest vocals. The song did a great job of pumping up the crowd for the next band and the band left the crowd buzzing for the next set.
Then followed West Bromwich band Obscure Pleasures who I had personally heard a lot of hype about but never actually seen. But from their first song all the hype began to make sense as Obscure Pleasures take to the stage confident and full of talent. Their sound is “New Wave”, and the crowd loved it. The sounds were powerful and singer Josh’s vocals grabbed everyoneís attention and made sure to keep it.
The New Faith’s tour main support were up next, and it was extremely doubtful that by the end of their set, anyone who didn’t like Fearless Vampire Killers or who didnít know who they were had changed their minds and had been opened up to the world of their fun and energetic music. Complete with makeup and covered in talcum powder, Fearless Vampire Killers bring in the biggest crowd of the supports, no-one daring to miss the experience. Their stage antics made you not want to take your eyes off them, and with everyone headbang that made their hair erupt in a cloud of talcum powder, the crowd would scream.
Vocalists Laurence Beveridge and Kier Kemp’s had clear, unique vocals and had no problem getting the crowd involved in the music, fans screaming and shouting along with the lyrics. It’s not their first time touring alongside Will Francis, as Fearless Vampire Killers toured with Wills band Aiden in December 2010; and it’s clear how far they’ve come since then- theyíre more confident with their visual performance and musical performance, and their fanbase has grown rapidly to create their sea of harmonizing voices in the audience. Bassist Drew Woolnough and guitarist Cyrus Barrone were just as important in exciting the crowd, their performances strong, along with drummer Luke Illingworth, whose talent wasn’t ignored as a drummer’s usually is due to being at the back of the stage. After their set ended, once again triggering the cheers of pleasure from fans, it was obvious the audience of tonight were there just as much for Fearless Vampire Killers as they were for the main act.
Then on came William Control, and the atmosphere in the crowd kicked off from the second he stepped on stage. A memorable image, with his white shirt and waistcoat and a look that you expect to be from some Tim Burton film; Will Francis, frontman of Aiden, looked like he was ready for business and to make the evening worth it.
The band is just as ready as he is, and the set starts off without any hesitations, completely transferring the atmosphere and mood of the venue from light and chatty to dark and compelling, an experience that Will apparently gives a lot, by the amount of fans crowded into the small venue. His performances are a favourite amongst the fans and even other bands, due to his energy on stage and communication with the fans, and his stage presence demands an audience without even asking. Will’s the kind of person that, if he walks into a room, all eyes are on him, and this shows by having everyone’s attention fully on him as he gives an amazing, energetic, fun performance. Every song is performed perfectly; each catchy, 80′s synth pop laced and makes you feel like you’re in one of those bars you see in vampire movies. He certainly doesn’t let anyone down this evening, and the crowd are constantly working with him along the way, clapping and jumping when he tells them too and singing the words back at him. His overall performance is one to remember, and one thatís hard to be put into words. But simply; the experience of a William Control gig cannot be described, so you better go grab your eyeliner and go get some tickets for the next time Mr. Control comes to town.
William Control Set List
New World Order(A New Kind Of Faith)
All Due Restraint
My Lady Dominate
Kiss Me Judas
Come Die With Me
The Velvet Warms and Binds
Omnia Vincit Amor
Failure Of All Mankind
I’m Only Human Sometimes
Fearless Vampire Killers
More Videos from this gig can be found at our YouTube Channel.
Review by Bryanna Leigh.
Picture by Jon Musselwhite.
Videos by Dave Chinery (Chinners).