Live Review: Flyleaf – O2 Academy, Newcastle, March 26th 2010

Embarking on their first UK tour in over 2 years, Texan rockers Flyleaf return to Newcastle Academy. Tonight is sold out well in advance, and there’s definitely some big things expected tonight, with the band expected to dish out tracks from new album Memento Mori. Bottoms up…

Brighton outfit The Crave seem to be bagging a lot of tidy support slots recently, there’s a good reason why. They play balls-out rock to the highest degree, and it not only sounds massive, but it sounds a lot more accomplished than the four young men standing on stage can seemingly produce. Tracks like opener Cooking In The Kitchen boast healthy doses of woah-oh’s and big chorus’s to sing along to, whilst others bring to the table an almost Shinedown-esque epicness. A tight and well-rounded live band, the quartet lose none of their simple hard rock edge, and it pays off, going down really well with the steadily gathered crowd. Hats off to the gents, they’ve warmed up brilliantly tonight.

Texan quintet Flyleaf sounded quite frankly, awful, last time they came to the UK on the back of nu-metal giants Korn; tonight, in a far more intimate setting, they break out old favourite Fully Alive to jump-start things, and it sounds simply awesome.

Pint-sized frontwoman Lacey Mosley sounds just as she does on record in a live setting; it’s raw, emotional, and very elegant, despite the fact that she’s very hard to spot on stage any lower than her hair. It’s a pity in this sense, that the crowd don’t pick up on it all more. It’s very energetic and the attendance don’t seem to rinse and repeat on their side of the barrier. There’s singing, but there’s barely any movement, which is a slight disappointment.

It’s a great mix of old and new, but in this setting, the old definitely ousts the new; All Around Me and Cassie will always be the better tracks, even compared to an impressive Again, and Memento Mori opener Beautiful Bride.

It’s hard to hear Lacey at times, though it’s hardly her fault, given the crowd in front of her are singing back so strongly. The ever-powerful I’m So Sick causes a stir, but it’s hardly the band at their best, and a strange choice of ending, a cover from John Mark McMillan (whoever he may be) puts a slight dampener on proceedings.

The packed room have obviously enjoyed seeing Flyleaf in an intimate setting, but tonight definitely leaves those in attendance wanting slightly more for their money.

George Cannings.

Keep checking back for our interview with Flyleaf!

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