The cult of Frank Iero is strong, I think his fans would have sold out the Academy 3 even if he had decided to do a show which consisted of him playing a theremin and reciting spoken word poetry. As it would have it though, Frank came to town with his other project Death Spells.
One thing we didn’t realise we needed in our lives was Folk Death Metal, oh yeh- apparently it’s a thing, and in an ocean of Pop Punk and mediocre Rock it is a welcome alternative as a support slot.
Robyn G Shiels brings just his acoustic guitar and his poetic lyrics to quiet an excited crowd of teenagers. Such loyal and committed fans can be a double edged sword, some will come and camp out on the barrier and then blatantly ignore a support, just so they are at the front for the headliner.
The other side of that sword is the loyal fan who are fully supportive and swallow up everything that is given the seal of approval by their idol. The crowd in Birmingham seemed to be a bit of both! Death Spells ain’t no My Chemical Romance, and they ain’t no Cellabration, Death Spells are their own beast and a beast they are. It is hard to focus on a band like Death Spells and not instantly gush about Iero, but this feels like a real joint project, and the term project seems a perfect summation of their live act , with video screens and laptops the power behind the performance.
Electo and Hardcore shouldn’t go together, but somehow Death Spells make it work! The sound is powerful, invigorating and enthralling, and performing without traditional instruments did not hinder this duo one bit. I’ve gotta gush a little, Frank Iero is captivating, he’s passionate and he’s a real and true individual talent.