Well, hopefully, you made it to the Bad Omens show on time, at the right venue, and on the right date because this gig changed more times than the British weather does. Speaking of which, on top of all that, it actually did also decide to chuck a blanket of snow at us as if there weren’t enough curve balls. But Metalheads are tough. Nothing comes between us and our live music fix, and so here we all were, dressed in black venturing out into the frosty weather for this much anticipated event.
Bad Omens – Oxymorrons – Kid Bookie
SWX, Bristol – 8 March 2023
Words: Jade Colvin
Photography: Bryan Kirks
Understandably, due to the sheer demand for this gig, it had to go bigger and BIGGER, as this baby had sold out! I don’t think they quite realised how hard the new album, The Death Of Peace Of Mind, has hit us all. It has rocketed their popularity. It’s one of those albums where there isn’t one song you dislike; the whole album just seems like a huge hit.
Having 3 million monthly plays on Spotify alone, changed venues with capacities such as 250, then 450, settling on Bristol’s SWX at 1,800, playing on the same night as giants Lamb Of God and STILL selling out! If you didn’t know who Bad Omens were before this tour, you do now.
Previously described as sounding eerily like BMTH, as much as that is a phenomenal compliment, and you can hear who’s influenced them, inevitably you want your own sound, and that’s what I believe has set this album, The Death Of Peace Of Mind, aka this tour Concrete Jungle, apart. Not only that, it’s so relatable and honest. When Noah sings about life experiences, and it’s not only how he may have been wronged but how he has also made mistakes. I believe we can all relate to that. How can we grow without making mistakes and learning from them?
It hits in all the right places, though. Not only do they have their own sound and great lyrics, but the music is full of passion and emotions. When the violins kick in, in What It Cost, it’s as though it physically yanks at your heart through your chest.
They kicked off with the name of the tour, the first song on the album, yep, CONCRETE JUNGLE, and as you looked around the room, it was as if not a single person wasn’t singing. It’s that relatable and emotional connection we have to music, and right now, they’re nailing it! Switching it up to the other end of the album, the second song Artificial Suicide really kicked things off as Noah comes swinging back on stage wearing a balaclava mask to a sick heavy breakdown and Metal screams depicting that dystopian anarchy style.
They got everyone involved building the atmosphere with jumping and chants back and forth with the crowd. The band were so at ease, slowing the gig down and then picking it back up to faster tracks, keeping the excitement alive! Of course, not everything came from The Death Of Peace Of Mind, pulling out a couple of callbacks from their previous albums.
The clean vocals to the screams had eye-popping reactions when Noah pulled the mic away and could still be picked up with those cries! Down here at the front, there were pits and walls of death. You couldn’t help but burn off energy to those breakdowns and catchy riffs.
This was the last night of the tour. After a wicked encore, which included, of course, THE DEATH OF PEACE OF MIND (what an absolutely sexy tune), Noah thanked everyone for their overwhelming support selling out this tour before it even began, proudly stating Just Pretend is at number one in rock charts in the US.
They’ve previously supported the likes of ADTR, Asking Alexandria, Parkway Drive and more, but this was their show, and it looks like they are the future of this genre, ones to watch. Even the merch stand was over run with just one guy serving, clearly indicating again they were not expecting this to blow up with the overwhelming audience they received.
Obviously, there are more great things to come from Bad Omens, and we cannot wait to see what’s next.
First up for this much anticipated gig, and last night of this tour too, is Kid Bookie (Tyronne Hill), a rapper from South East London. It comes as no surprise why he’s on this tour after working with the likes of Slipknot’s Corey Taylor and Sid Wilson, Good Charlotte’s Billy Martin, Wheatus, Nova Twins and more.
He burst on stage with a huge attitude, immediately taking hold of the room with chants to “fuck off!” to fear, holding us back, which continued through the set. With some heavy guitar playing from the man himself, he even split the room and got in with us, hyping everyone up with punky Keith Flint vibes to similar sounds of Nonpoint.
Keeping the hype going, here came American alternative hip-hop rock band Oxymorrons, with that noughties rap Metal style and flash backs to the likes of Public Enemy and Anthrax’s Bring The Noise. This was their first time playing in the UK, “and it’s been outstanding.”
They had a great rapport with the crowd with so much energy to give, even on the last night! Two vocalists bounced off each other with different styles, and all the members had huge smiles to match that energy, playing new songs for us to hear with the use of a hybrid drum kit and even free-style rapping at one point, which was well received.
They spoke of life and asked us to open up our minds to different genres. “Why listen to only one type of music? You wouldn’t eat just one type of food all your life.”
Even after the set, they hung out in the crowd with us – so down to earth.
If, like me, though, you’re thinking, doesn’t that name already exist? Well, they had a story for this. Go check them out and find out for yourselves.