Laid back Brits, Band of Skulls, played to a sold out Toronto crowd on March 30 at the Phoenix.
The opening band, We Are Augustines heated up the place starting at 9pm on the dot. The New York band had the audience clapping along through each song. The lead singer’s voice was something between Theory of A Deadman and someone you’d find on the top 10 on Idol. This is just me being picky, but they never mentioned who they were, leaving the 19 plus audience wondering who was on stage. They did however have some hardcore fans in the audience, giving a birthday shout out to one who asked for the lead singer’s towel. “That’s just not cool, you don’t want that” Lead singer replied with. They talked about how we’d be in for a treat seeing Band of Skulls live. We Are Augustines talked about how cold Toronto’s weather was, since they were just in the Gulf of Mexico beforehand. Overall they had catchy songs, standard guitar riffs with sing-a-long “la la las”.
Taking the stage 20 minutes late, Band of Skulls welcomed Toronto with a cheers and sip of beer. I was curious to see how their relaxed attitude would translate to stage, but I must admit, they did well. They barely spoke, but made up for it in their sound. The three piece sounded so tight as a band, you’d think you were listening to the actual tracks. Giving a few “thank-yous” every few songs, the crowd would cheer each song as they started the intro. Every song was the crowd’s favourite. Band of Skulls have that “cool factor” where you’d think that one day they just said “Hey! Let’s jam” and had it turn into playing two years at South By Southwest, touring internationally and doing tapings of Letterman, while standing at only two albums being released. Closing the night, as they exchanged smiles with each other, the crowd chanted “one more song” as guitarist, Russell Marsden told telling us to “take care of yourself, take care of each other”. Ending the night with the single Devil Takes Care of Their Own, the atmosphere in the Phoenix was unreal, seeing how much they put into the show, fed off into the audience. It’s clear that Band of Skulls are sticking around.