Live Review

Cancer Bats, King Tuts Wah Wah Hut, Glasgow

The energy is more than a little exhausting, kept up as it is for the length of their entire set without a single song lagging in pace.

Cancer Bats are one of the most consistently explosive live bands regularly touring today. Seemingly on tour constantly, the Canadian four-piece’s dedication to the art of live performance is admirable, as is their ever rotating setlist and their ability to bring an almost superhuman passion and fury to their performances on a nightly basis. In fact, it reaches the point where the only downside to a performance from Cancer Bats is that no matter how spontaneous and packed with catharsis it feels, there is a slight lack of a personal nature in their shows. When playing one sweatbox after another for nine years this is unsurprising though, and the band still triumph in front of a lively crowd in Glasgow.

Things appear troubling at first as the crowd largely fail to engage with support bands Empress and Brutality Will Prevail. Both these bands seem somewhat generic, and the crowd barely warm to their performances. This is only made worse by the typical posturing of both bands frontmen. However, fears of a dead crowd are allayed when Cancer Bats take to the stage with a slightly breathtaking fury, launching into new album highlight Bricks & Mortar. In the midst of the electric action of the crowd, songs have a tendency to merge into one, however Cancer Bats do manage to fit most of their most familiar songs into their set.

The energy is more than a little exhausting, kept up as it is for the length of their entire set without a single song lagging in pace. However, it’s a cruelly short set, clocking in at just an hour. For a band with four original albums and a host of popular Black Sabbath covers, only getting an hour is always going to be something of a disappointment, and a lot of album favourites don’t make the cut.

But in their relatively short stage time they do manage to blow away the Glaswegian crowd. Cancer Bats have been playing relentless, endlessly entertaining shows for almost a decade now, and although this may have just been another night for the band, for the audience this is an experience unmatched by many of today’s touring punk bands.

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