Live Review: Alien Ant Farm @ KOKO, Camden

Editor's Review

Summary

Allowing us all to relive the glory days of nu-metal / alternative rock AAF style is priceless. Here is to the future and many many many more tours.

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Celebrating 15 years since Alien Ant Farm’s UK top 5 hit album ANThology, the Californian alternative rockers (neé Nu-Metal) drew a massive crowd to Camden’s KOKO.

A healthy mix of late 20’s to early 30’s metal/rock fans filled the venue, all looking to relive a night of the music that filled their youth. The friend that came with me said the retrospective sentence “It makes me wish I was 13 again”, as I said you really felt that this sentiment was the glue that drew this angsty crowd to see Alien Ant Farm in all their glory.

As you would expect the band played their debut album “ANThology” in chronological order, with the crowd loosing their minds with opener “Courage” followed swiftly by their second biggest hit “Movies”. Flesh and Bone”, “Whisper” and “Summer” were all met with a hazy reception from the crowd which caused superfans to stick out profusely, then “Attitude” dropped, but before this, singer Dryden Mitchell spoke about his drunk mom and still having issues like this, even though he is pressing on in to his 40’s. I’ve read reviews from other publications of AAF from different nights, the fact the band is older yet still talk about issues with parents doesn’t mean that they are still playing in to juvenile issues, they are showing it still happens and what gets us through it all? Music and friends.

Towards the middle of the set “Stranded”, “Wish” & “Calico” saw a revival of the crowd, especially with “Wish” as the track was featured on an early Tony Hawks video game. As everyone waiting with baited breath for the bands infamous cover of “Smooth Criminal”, “Happy Death Day” and “Universal” was played in succession. After both tracks, the band left the stage, only later to return after cries for more music.  In the encore the band played songs “Glow” and “These Days” from their label turbulent second album TruANT (full disclosure it’s my favorite of theirs) and then the night was sent off on a high with “Smooth Criminal”,  and you felt all the pent up frustration of our collective teenage and early twenties had been unleashed. It was a special night and I hope to see more from AAF on the festival circuit.

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