Bullet For My Valentine's has been such an interesting one to follow. They fell in to the small handful of groups who emerged and exploded in the early 2000's but have since waned and lost their way somewhat. This headline tour had a slightly different twist to it in the fact that the band were allowing a large part of their focus to be spearheaded towards their most popular release in The Poison, to the point where select dates had the band performing it in full. This wasn't one of those nights, they were saving that for the second night at Brixton (shout-out to the poor chap near us at the bar who realised he'd bought the wrong ticket about three tracks in...), but the band still leaned slightly towards some of the older stuff in a far more wide ranging set across their back catalogue.
It was perhaps more interesting to be in attendance on this particular evening because judging by the kind of reaction they were able to garner for the older stuff it was clear that the following night was going to have a very different atmosphere indeed. Instead, with this Bullet For My Valentine show who could use the crowd reactions as a gauge which runs parallel to their general career. There were definitely dips in the overall atmosphere in the venue which were cleverly intercepted by what felt like very deliberate placing of the old favourites - for instance, Four Words To Choke Upon was like an adrenaline shot to the heart midway through the set. These glimpses here and there allowed for them to carry the attention of most of those in attendance, but it was noticeably easy to wander the floor and pick a spot you wanted whilst all the bar areas at the back seemed to remain busy.
As far as how they actually sounded, even with the less well received tracks they sound like a band rejuvenated. Recent live performances had generated reports of a band looking unenthusiastic and going through the motions, but tonight you could see a fire in their performance which leaves us excited as to what the near future holds. They needed this headlining tour containing significant call backs to their older, better, material - as far as their future output is concerned we're sure that this could be marked as a significant turning page for a band still beaming with potential.