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The Devil Wears Prada at The Underworld Review


There’s no better honour for a bunch of bands than to see a crammed venue when they take to the stage. Brotherhood of the Lake and Last Witness played support to The Devil Wears Prada at the Underworld, which saw a packed audience of (mostly) fans who were younger than your average punter.

Despite the feeling that DWP would play something out of the ordinary since it was their last show on tour, I did expect the setlist to be drawing mostly from their latest release ‘Dead Throne’…

More on that later.

Brotherhood of the Lake blistered through their half-hour set with very few words spoken in between – except for a note of thanks at the end. Indeed, the Plymouth riff-monsters performed nonstop with as much reckless intent as possible. With several songs drawing from hardcore and punk, the crowd didn’t seem intent on doing more than politely applaud them after every song.

Last Witness seemed to have better luck; they got the crowd moshing and diving all over the place. Breakdowns upon breakdowns with a hyperactive vocalist (Theo) who went for a bit of swim himself during their set. After plugging their album several times, a lot of their songs eventually became a wait for the breakdown to go nuts about.

After their set, I figured out why the tech guy taped down together the amp cabinets, for fear that the bass heavy vibrations would shake them off. It was a sign of things to come, and surely what had just passed as a mere taster.

DWP took to the stage with the album opener – with the gnarliest of build-ups – ‘Dead Throne’. The only two things I felt let down by were the lack of songs from ‘Plagues'. They played ‘Hey John, What’s Your Name Again?’ but it seemed to be mostly jumbled and mired in noise to decipher – and Mike Hranica’s vocals.

I learnt that day about his ability to take a page from Lamb of God vocalist Randy Blythe and sound brilliantly brutal in the studio by all means. But live, Hranica’s vocals left much to be desired. Of course, I’m discounting the fans here. They simply filled in all the blanks for him. Every kid out there shouted out all the words. Each and every one. Keyboarist James Baney had little to do on their latest album, and became hardly audible, save for his frantic headbanging.

Regardless, The Devil Wears Prada had certainly arrived in London with a demolition mission. The breakdowns seemed earth-shattering, and relentless in making every person in the room kick out of inertia. With a great sound, they made the most of it, returning for an encore performance surprisingly quickly to perform ‘Chicago’, ‘Constance’ and end the night with ‘Danger: Wildman’.

Let's finish with a one-liner. One solitary sentence to sum up last Friday evening's events…

"Mosh monkeys have surf-happy time as the best in modern metal nail it."


Review - Anurag Tagat

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