Home Gigs Gig Review: Biffy Clyro provide the Indoor Fireworks at Belfast SSE

Gig Review: Biffy Clyro provide the Indoor Fireworks at Belfast SSE

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Review by Ivor Whitten for MPM

There is a definite wintery feel with a cold wind brushing through the titanic area of the Belfast Docks, rushing along the biting rain.

But that did not put off the thousands gathering for a night of fabulous alt rock with the three boys from Kilmarnock. Indeed, Celtic cousins Biffy Clyro had landed for a night in Belfast at the SSE Arena no less. And even more than that, tonight their support are Architects.

The palpable excitement was thick in the air as everyone filed into the arena to take up the best place on the floor of the huge hall. The seats were filling out fast too.

The lights went down to the roar of the crowd filling the arena as the Brighton band, Architects, brought their metalcore to Belfast with aplomb.

With Sam Carter yelling “I want to see each one of you bouncing around with us”, they dived into “Deep Fake” a great start as this track has so much rumbling metalcore with industrialised hard edged guitar, fuzzy reverberating bass and thumping drums.

Next was more of what was full of their bouncing energy with “Tear Gas” as Sam once again addressed the filling arena saying “Thank you so much.

How are we all feeling tonight? We are Architects from Brighton, England and we are delighted to be here. Remember to use your hips swing them around and dance like no one is watching you.” And off they went with “Little Wonder” much to the joy of everyone as heads banged and people started moshing out to their hearts content.

“Open up a mosh pit but be good to each other.” Came the call from Sam and that was duly noted and a mosh pit opened up with quite a few enthusiastic Architects fans going nuts moshing like there was no tomorrow.

“I love you. It’s been such a long time since we have been here. How many have seen us?” as loud cheers went up as Sam finished with “how many of you are thinking ‘what is going on?’” more jubilant cheers went up. Then addressed everyone “This one is for all those in the mosh pit.” And they dropped “Black Lungs”.

More banter ensued as Sam went on “How’s everyone on the floor? How’s everyone in the seats?” as each area yelled as loud as they could as Architects delivered their new single “A New Moral Low Ground” which was released in October from their new album “The Classic Symptoms of a Broken Spirit” which is their tenth studio album. It was released on 21 October 2022 through Epitaph Records.

The industrialised metalcore kept so many moshing as much as they could while others raised their hands in the air to “Meteor” and then came the call for phone lights to light up the arena which was enthusiastically followed as phones were raised as high as they could be as “Dead Butterflies” was pumped out from the stage and the arena was lit up along with the stage lights.

Sam took a moment once again to say “Thank you so much. I want to thank you for being such a warm and enthusiastic crowd and coming out to see us. After 17 years this is still incredible. Can you guys bring up the energy a little bit more? This song is “Doomsday”” and with that the energy and athleticism of all the band thundered off the stage.

“Do you know what’s really great – live music and the one thing we all have in common in this room, incredible musical taste,” brought a great laugh from the floor as Sam encouraged everyone to introduce themselves to each other before calling for a circle pit to open for “When We Were Young” an absolutely thumping track punctuated with a large well populated circle pit going as hard as they could. The pure fun the metal fans were having was totally infectious as more and more people joined in.

They finished their set with “Animals” a wonderful heavy track that had a reminiscent feel of Rammstein. As they finished up Sam ended with “Hell yes. Thank you so much. How much fun was that. We have been Architects- you have been amazing.”

The whole band were a fantastic mixture of music, vocals and lighting all working together to deliver a single punchy pointed performance.

Then came the headliners, Biffy Clyro, and they easily earned that moniker.

To beautiful symphonic choral music the lights suddenly went out and to a weird wabbling background melody the stage was bathed in red as each band member took their place stationing themselves across a platformed stage.

without any introduction they drove straight into “DumDum” which is such a delirium inducing song it just gave everyone a taster of how they could easily wield the prog rock mantle.

Then on into “A Hunger in Your Haunt” and “Tiny Indoor Fireworks” as Simon Neil moved onto the forward platform swinging a bulb around.

“Good evening, Belfast. We are your hosts for the evening. We are biffy Clyro. Sing it with me, Belfast” came the call to arms from Simon as Biffy Clyro, the band moved around full of energy and determination each member perfectly balanced in their movements, almost painting an Avant Garde live painting. The video work for the huge monitors alongside the in tempo light show amalgamated with the band’s powerful musicality to produce a fully formed performance that had everyone entranced.

Then came “Who’s Got a Match?” and the whole place sang along to the chorus as chugging rock riffs and rhythms poured off the stage.

Simon took a moment to pull in the crowd saying “Belfast, Belfast, Belfast. You beautiful bastards. Thanks for joining us tonight. We’ve missed you.” A huge cheer went up from all round the incredibly packed arena as the full deal performance continued with “Black Chandelier”.

The arena full of bodies out for a good night were in full motion singing along in time as if a hymn to Biffy Clyro. Next came “That Golden Rule” as hand clapping spontaneously broke out to the rhythm.

The band just kept bouncing around the stage from one platform to the next. They were as energetic and athletic as the music they were playing and the lights that flitted along in time to it all.

Then came “Instant History” to the accompaniment of a set of violins perfectly fitting for this slow poignant song. The anthemic “Mountains” had everyone going crazy singing and moving along in time.

Simon almost emotionally addressed the packed bodies “We have missed you so much. Please sing along if you know the words. This is “Machines””. Still with the violins slipping in beautifully to perfectly accentuate the melancholic song.

“Unknown Male 01” kicked off with Simon holding a video camera to his face as the feed filled out the large monitors either side of the stage. With its slow start, a rocking riff soon kicks in and so the song sways back and forth.

Then came “57” and “End Of” with a thumping bass intro and everyone participating by clapping along to the rhythm. The incredible show of an artistic blend of video, lights and music transported anyone witnessing this extraordinary performance.

They effortlessly filled the stage as they continued to drop songs like “Wolves of Winter”, “Space” and “Victory Over the Sun” before “Re-Arrange”, a beautiful light melancholic song to cleanse the palate once more. With the crowd at the right moments accompanying the band with perfectly timed claps.

There was perfect symmetry on stage as they all sang in this beautiful acoustic number. The roars and cheers at the end of this one was deafening. The placing of this song of this song was perfectly done.

Then came “Biblical” as the digital effects were once again on point and fascinatingly accentuating the song itself rather than taking away from it. Arms and voices were raised in supplication before “Living Is a Problem Because Everything Dies”, a heart pounding adrenaline induced song that just grabs you by the throat.

They closed out their set with “The Captain” which had the inevitable long drawn out ending that had everyone in ecstasy. The roar was loud enough to lift the roof.

After a short break, back on to stage for the encore to close out with “God & Satan”, “Opposite”, “Glitter and Trauma”, “Bubbles” and “Many of Horror” as each one was welcomed with open arms, and you could see the crowd did not want Biffy Clyro to stop. And with that the evening was over, but far from forgotten as the crowd left with warm great smiles across their faces.

The whole night was an incredible experience of two bands that knew how to appreciate their audience, were humble but brimming with talent and both could more than deliver an incredible performance. The whole evening was electric.

To see these two bands in the one night was a fantastic opportunity that everyone there was delighted to have been there to see it.

To get your chance to see them check https://www.biffyclyro.com/ and https://architectsofficial.com/

Photography by Ebony Alexander for MPM

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