It’s been a glorious Easter weekend and while most of the country are in a chocolate comatose, there’s a large queue outside the O2 arena in Leeds. The reason behind this: Papa Roach and Nothing More are in town!
Hitting the stage first was Nothing More and what a start to the show that was! As the lights facing the crowd strobed, front man Johnny Hawkins was perched up what can only be described as some sort of scaffolding in the center of the stage. While at the top, swaying precariously, “Let them Burn” began to be played. As Hawkins swung down this scaffolding, it was only the beginning of what was to be a high energy and extremely entertaining set. Playing through a mixture tracks from their latest album The Stories We Tell Ourselves and their self titled debut album, it was a well put together setlist. Finishing off the set was a Skrillex cover and “We Will Rock You” cover.
As the venue lights went down once more, the excitement in the crowd was electric. The screams became deafening as Papa Roach took to the stage. In a somewhat unexpected twist, the band kicked off with “Last Resort” which as expected saw the crowd begin to sing along. From this point, not a single track was not sung by the crowd and they made quite an impression. As the set continued through “Help” and “Who Do You Trust”, Jacoby Shaddix’s energy was infectious as he bounded about the stage, using the riser that is always part of the set up to ensure the fans could see. The entire band followed suit with the energy, while never missing a beat, proving they are a live performance band. As the set continued, the crowd became wilder, encouraged by Shaddix as pits began to form and the occasional crowd surfer made their way across to the front. The rest of the crowd had their hands in the air and were singing their hearts out with the band. However it was “Traumatic” which really got the crowd going as Shaddix has split them down the middle to open up the pit, for it to become pure chaos. On the opposite side of the scale though was seeing how touched the entire band was especially Shaddix as the crowd sang back “Scars”. As he stopped singing to allow the crowd to take over, there was a moment of pure awe in the bands faces as their fans sang each and every word of the song perfectly and at an incredible volume. It must be one incredible experience to see a room full of people show that kind of love for your music. It seemed to take Shaddix a couple of moments to compose himself after witnessing that, to regain his composure and head into “Feel Like Home”. Ending this part of the set with “To Be Loved”, the crowd was done rocking out with the band. With the stage dark once more, the chants of “we want more”, became deafening. The band returned with their tribute to the late Keith Flint of the Prodigy, with an impressive cover of “Firestarter”. Ending the encore and the night with “Infest” and “Born For Greatness” it had been one hell of a show and a great night
Papa Roach are one of those bands, you could watch night after night perform and still be not only entertained but completely taken on by the energy and atmosphere they create. Nothing More prove to be a perfect companion to the band also as they bring their own excitement and awe to the mix. All in all, this is one amazing tour that leaves me wanting more!
Review: Emmie Ellis
Photography: Mark Ellis