...showed a grittier, edgier side to the band

There was the usual hubbub of expectation and excitement, augmented with a buzz of familiarity as the crowd waited for East Londoners Boy Kill Boy to take to the stage at this big old school hall of a venue.

Known for being at their best when they play live, the four-piece from Leytonstone have built up a loyal and friendly following since the release of last year’s album Civilian. London’s Hoxton Bar and Kitchen is one of indie rock’s fashionable venues at the moment, and had been sold out for weeks and space was sparce. The photographers had to clamber onto the bar at the back to get any kind of decent angle such as the crowd pressed forward. This, the final night of a nationwide tour of the cosier venues around the country, saw the boys mix debut album favourites with the cream of the crop of the new offering ‘Stars and The Sea’.
Launching straight into old single Back Again, causing a full crowd shout-a-long, the band, looking well up for it, were visibly back in familiar territory. Seizing on the momentum of the opener, On And On and Six Minutes came tearing out before the first of the new material was showcased. No Conversation; a catchy, hooky little number that was released on limited edition earlier in the month, was followed with A-OK; a song lead singer Chris Peck announced symbolised their journey as a band so far and the keyboard–led Paris. Taking things back to their previous release, the dirtier, heavier and extended Friday Friday saw the watching mob lose their ‘London crowd nodding heads’ and get well involved – Peck letting their out reaching hands play his guitar; people were dancing on the bar and pints flew overhead. Now that’s what live shows are all about. The band’s talismanic song Suzie was always going to go down well and a slightly boozy, and way out of tune girl got up to share Peck’s mic before being gently ushered away. They were meant to finish off with the next release off the album – Promises; which is definitely a radio-friendly ride, but crowd demands led them to play a juke–box of requests as the quartet went way over their stage time, finally leaving after a full on rendition of On My Own.
This gig showed a grittier, edgier side to the band. It was an intelligent blend of old favourites and new single wannabes as Boy Kill Boy eased their fans into the new look, stripped down, rawer sound, while keeping with their trademark staccato drum beats – and did it go down well? What do you think?

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