Concert Review: Royal Blood
The English rockers played to a sold out 9:30 Club crowd
With the band’s second album, “How Did We Get So Dark?,” slated to come out on June 16, Royal Blood did a quick run of concerts leading up to the release, stopping at the legendary 9:30 Club on June 6. Playing a tight, 12 song setlist, the band brought a refreshing swagger and energy that captivated the crowd from the start.
A dazzling light show and the LA-based rock band, The Shelters, helped warm up the audience. Once singer and bass guitarist Mike Kerr and drummer Ben Thatcher took the stage, however, they had everyone in the palm of their hands. It was imminently clear from the first notes of their new single “Where Are You Now?” that the band deserves all the attention that they get as next up in English rock.
Royal Blood’s appeal is a double edged sword. They make groove heavy, riff oriented, blues influenced rock with catchy lyrics and blasting drum beats. However, despite some soaring highs (“Figure It Out,” “Out of the Black” and “Little Monster”) on their self-titled first album, much of the music they put out has a very similar pattern and sound. It sounds great, but it all essentially kind of sounds the same.
Ultimately, on Tuesday night, that formula worked. The band had enough crowd interaction and soloing to drag out their set to the point where it didn’t all feel the same. By only playing 12 great songs, the band was able to avoid any sense of boredom that may have arose given a longer set.
Royal Blood may not be reinventing rock, but they sure are making it fun. The band thrives on stage. However, if they want to have serious longevity, they ought to look in some new, more adventurous sonic directions.