Those Damn Crows take flight as they kick off the opening night of their UK tour on Tyneside.
Hot off the back of a recent string of shows with Monster Magnet, Welsh rockers Those Damn Crows are currently out on one of their largest UK headline runs to date. Tonight’s gig in Newcastle marks only the second time the band has played in the region, and much like the rest of the dates on this run it’s a complete sell-out.
Whilst the music world may have been fascinated by the announcement of the UK return of the Robinson brothers and the impending Black Crowes tour this week, tonight on Tyneside it’s all about TDC and the release of their sophomore album on Fri.
Having already made an instore appearance at Reflex Records earlier in the afternoon, the five-piece rounds out a successful day in the city in front of a capacity crowd at one of Newcastle’s favourite grassroots venue – Think Tank.
Supporting the Welsh music scene tonight’s undercard features some of the best talent coming out of the area by way of Tribeless and Florence Black. Whilst each of the aforementioned acts brings something a bit different to the proceedings early on in the evening.
The mighty crows come hurtling straight out of the blocks with recent single Who Did It and the explosive Long Time Dead. Of course, the initial tracks to be released from Point of No Return have been well received, with frequent airplay on rock radio. Having heard these live now, it’s easy to understand why.
Whilst technically not that old the likes of the anthemic Fear of The Broken and the melodic Someone Someday are already classics in the Crows’ songbook and the crowd respond wholeheartedly. Frontman Shane Greenhall is often in the audience whilst simultaneously spurring on the fans. It’s a high energy show, to say the least.
The surprising point of the night comes by way of a reworked airing of Blink of an Eye which begins with Greenhall positioned behind the keys. It’s a remarkable version of the track, and this creative approach certainly breathes new light into a staple song in the band’s setlist.
It’s always a bit of a dilemma touring so close to an album release. It’s that old question, how much new material can you include in the setlist? But when the quality is as good as Set In Stone, Never Win and Kingdom of Dust – the answer is as much as possible. In fact, the Crow’s include nine new tracks in the set tonight and there is certainly no signs of any second album slump here.
The band switch things up a bit with Be You, which sees Greenhall sporting a guitar for the only time in the night. He even jokes about it going a bit Bob Dylan, but it works so well.
The end of the show is all about the old favourites, as TDC blast through the likes of Don’t Give A Damn, the thunderous Breakaway and a song that could well be their mantra Rock N Roll Ain’t Dead. And before we know it, it’s all done and dusted, sixteen songs straight through, no encore and no false endings. Tonight’s show is a no messing, hard-rocking set to say the least.
Whilst pondering on the band’s new album title it seems pertinent. Those Damn Crows have reached a milestone in their career, where their trajectory is looking up and the band’s sold-out tour is a testament to this. The group have capitalised on the gains of their debut record and as a result, they have very quickly reached the Point of No Return – it’s onwards and upwards from here on out.