It’s that time of year when the Kerrang! Tour rolls around again, 2014 boasted headliners Limp Bizkit amongst others. This year as we walked into Birmingham’s O2 Academy there was one thing that may have been missing- a clear headline band. Instead the 2015 Kerrang! Tour line-up very much felt focused on the future and bands who are very much on the rise and in-vogue.

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Opening the nights proceedings were Beartooth, having known the bands work and going in as a fans we knew what to expect, a raw, powerful and emotional set of heavy hitting hardcore tunes. What was surprising, is clearly so did the fans. Nearly every person in the room was singing along with Caleb, the Beartooth front-man declared Birmingham the best crowd on the tour only one song in. If there would be any criticism it’s that Beartooth didn’t have long enough, this band are clear headliners, who connect with their fans on such a deep level. After seeing them at more intimate venues in the past I was wondering how they’d tackle the big 02 stage, but their performance was epic. They felt more like a cohesive band-unit than ever before, they were truly resonating.

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I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again Beartooth are going to be huge.
If you haven’t listened to their début album ‘Disgusting’ then do it because I like it and I’m awesome.

Next on the bill are another band who come with a fairly big reputation, their last album ‘Runes’ reaching No.1 in the official rock chart and being highly praised by Kerrang! themselves, Bury Tomorrow are flying the flag for British “Metalcore” and they certainly leave everything out on the stage.

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 As with Beartooth the only issue with Bury Tomorrow is that they have the potential to be headlining shows like this, so a half hour set feels like it doesn’t do the band justice. However I’m sure the band will be on the road again, and when they do I feel that some members of the crowd who might not have gone in fans will be there front and centre.

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Their performance was mesmerising. Cutie-pie frontman Jason had some lovely banter with the audience and really created an inclusive atmosphere. Their performance delivered everything you want from an authentic Rock band; guts, power and energy.

What followed was the worst kept secret of the night, giving to the fact that the promoters had decided to announce the “secret” bands appearance weeks before hand, rumoured to be due to poor ticket sales.

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 Young Guns came out to a rapturous fanfare! The set was short and sweet, just three songs but it was enough to keep the crowd pumping and most were putty in the hands of frontman Gustav Wood.

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After their three songs the band departed the stage, but not before promoting their up-coming headline tour.

Before the nights official headliners Don Broco took the stage, there was one final support act, American Pop Punkers We Are The In Crowd.

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Granted the band have some catchy tunes, but live they just don’t cut it. Tay Jardine’s vocals felt weak and lost, and it appeared like other vocalist Jordan Eckes has just been plonked away in the corner, letting the pretty girl take centre stage. These views might not be shared by the young crowd in attendance, who seemed to be captivated by Tay and the boys. We Are The In Crowd are lucky that today’s Kerrang! crowd are all early teens, because they’re their ideal fan base, no one over the age of 16 would fess up to liking these tunes, it’s boring fluff, just blah, drivel.

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Totally subjective obviously, but they just don’t have anything special, no power or pizazz, We Are The In Crowd are okay, they make music that some people might like.

Headliners Don Broco feel like they’ve emerged out of nowhere within the last twelve months, however a quick check of Wikipedia indicates that their début album came out in 2012 with new album due out sometime this year.

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The band opened with the hugely catchy current single ‘Money. Power. Fame.’ which has been doing the rounds on the major radio stations and seemingly hourly plays on certain repetitive music TV station…Kerrang! The young Brits clearly have a strong fan-base and with the clear backing of Kerrang! 2015 could be a huge year for the Bedford lads. The crowd were ecstatic, apparently to these kids the show did have a clear headliner, to us it appeared Don Broco were more of a supporting band but the crowd went crazy for them! They knew every word to every song, screaming, crying, it was crazy One Direction, Beatles kind of shit up in there.

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DB definitely stand out from the masses of new bands, they have a unique sound and a really unique look, they performed with synchronisation and real passion, they really put on a show, I’d go to see them again and you know what? I’d probably enjoy it!

It will be interesting in future years to look back on this years Kerrang! Tour, because it’s clear that all the bands are destined for big things even if they aren’t everyone’s cup of tea. I look forward to what the folks at Kerrang! bring us next year.