14th October 2011
Review & Photography by Michelle Murphy
Anticipation is in the air tonight, Soil is reunited with their original singer Ryan McCombs (Drowning Pool) after a 7 year absence for the “Scars 10th anniversary tour”.
Puddle of Mudd are co-headliners for tonight’s gig which unsurprisingly means the Electric Ballroom is sold out, jammed with hot sweaty metallers ready for a night to remember.
PoM take to the stage at 7.30pm, despite the early start the place is already heaving. Frontman Wes Scantlin came onstage with a beanie, jacket and sunglasses, some say reminiscent of Layne Staley (although nowhere near as good). PoM opened with ‘Famous’ to the decidedly unrespondant audience, but Wes changed that with his bags of enthusiasm, laughing and joking all the while (even blowing kisses to us girls in the photopit) soon enough he won the crowd around and they were singing along with every word.
Their new album Re(disc)overed, released in August, sees the band cover classic rock n roll hits.
Tonight they played The Rolling Stones ‘Gimme Shelter’ and AC/DC’s ‘T.N.T’ which went down really well with the crowd. Not being a massive fan of PoM I did enjoy hearing these and I admit, I was even singing along, but this was probably because it’s the stones and AC/DC rather than excellent covers.
They finish their set with the hit songs ‘Blurry’ and ‘She hates me’ which were enormous hit with the crowd as they sung, moshed, pumped fists into the air and generally went completely crazy! By the time PoM finished the crowd were pumped ready for Soil to take to the stage.
An excellent set which left the fans grinning manically however, I did catch them at Dingwalls earlier this year and I have to say they gave a much stronger and livelier performance than tonight’s show. This could be partly down to the intimacy that Dingwalls provides.
Famous / Psycho / Away from Me / Control / Stoned / T.N.T (AC/DC cover) / Nothing Left to Lose / Drift and Die / Gimme Shelter (The Rolling Stones cover) / Blurry / She Hates Me (- Encore)
Now I have been waiting for this moment for a long time, Ryan reuniting with Soil making them complete again. Since Ryan’s departure Soil have been lacking something, that is not to say A.J. Cavalier was a poor replacement, it just wasn’t the same. Ryan’s powerful and distinct vocals are what makes the songs come to life.
As the lights dim, Rambo quotes are played over the speakers which raises many of smiles, then Soil literally burst on stage belting out “Breaking me down”. Intense, in your face and absolutely mesmerising this brought the house down. Soil were on fire it seems, every member of the band were giving it there all and grinning from ear to ear, genuinely loving every minute.
10 years since “Scars” Ryan asked for the crowds help as he admitted that he couldn’t even remember “The One” and had the lyrics taped to the floor! This didn’t show as he as he gave a flawless performance.
The crowd were lapping up every second, the ever growing pit extended to most of the sold out venue at times, hair and beer flying everywhere. Throughout their whole set they were incredibly tight, Ryan’s vocals were spot on and sung with such passion. Proof that Ryan belongs onstage with Soil again.
Fun was the key tonight, the band and the crowd in the best of sprits. This prompted one fan to remove and throw his prosthetic limb onstage! The band erupt in laughter, not quite believing what was happening. In a true rock n roll moment Ryan had the great idea to fill it with jagermeister and drink from it, with the crowd and band members egging him on. Not such a great idea when he tried to stop himself gagging!
The encore was the mighty ‘Halo’, the biggest hit from the album. To say this was immense would be an understatement. Ryan decided to dive into the pit while singing the song in its entirety, yet still giving a performance most vocalists would dream of. Adam Zadel and Tim King rained onstage thrashing around, although looking a little concerned for the vocalists safety.
After the band left the stage the audience were so taken back they refused to leave, even when security tried ushering them out. Shouting and stamping (although it was a wonder how they remained upright considering the ground was literally a pool of beer) surprisingly Soil came back to perform ‘Pride’. This was far from the standard preplanned encore; even the road crew were stunned. I can personally vouch for this having talked with the band earlier and seen the set list.
This was more than just a normal gig, we witnessed something truly special that tonight. A great set list, a band that gelled perfectly with each other and the crowd, and an amazing audience that gave it their all. I was honoured not only to have been there, but to have hung out with the guys beforehand, and be up onstage doing the photos. One word sums it up – Epic!
Breaking me down / Need to Feel / My Own / Redefine / Cross my Heart / Inside / The One / Wide Open / Black 7 / Unreal / Halo / Pride (- Encore)