Gallows

Bowery Ballroom

GallowsNEW YORK, NY—Two shows in two days in two boroughs is easily an equation for overkill. When such performances have been trumpeted by the amount of press that Gallows have been since the fall, such scheduling is almost certainly setting oneself up for disaster. But not Gallows. The British import proved to be up with their own hype, but not for one moment outwardly believing it as they took the stage for the second of the two shows.

Before tearing into set opener “I Promise This Won’t Hurt,” frontman Frank Carter graciously told the crowd, “We’re Gallows from Londontown, and we’re honored to be here.” Seconds after the ending notes reverberated around the room, the band’s characteristic classic punk rock attitude came shining through as Carter declared, “We played in Brooklyn last night and let me tell you it was fucking terrible. You guys here are alright.”

What had rendered the Manhattan crowd alright to the band? The collective commitment to viewing every movement on the floors as a Kamikaze mission. To the credit of Gallows, the band had the audience firmly in the palm of their hand from the first note and kept them not only there, but in the circle pit and launched themselves and each other on and off the stage all night.

Even though receiving three free tattoos in two days had put Carter’s body into mild shock and kept him from participating in the now infamous ritual of performing from the center of the pit, the singer kept the attention on him in an unsuspected way. Between songs he talked and joked with the crowd, much in the way a stand-up comic would (and at times equally as funny) only to lead the band into another song a syllable later.

While he may have been the focal point, Carter was not the only electrifying aspect of the band—Lauranet Barnard, Steph Carter and Lee Barratt demonstrated and applied the tight musicianship which is often lacking in harder bands which usually results in a train wreck of a live performance. Gallows clearly have the skills to control their musical energy so that it makes sense.

The band went on to play “Come Friendly Bombs,” “Abandon Ship,” “Black Heart Queen,” “Will Someone Shoot That Fucking Snake,” “Belly Of A Shark,” and closed with “Orchestra Of Wolves.”

There has been much speculation as to whether Gallows will release another album, and if so, how many more? One thing is certain, the band should use the album process as a reason to go out and tour for as long as they can.

—by , March 5, 2008

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