by Brenda McTaggart
– Columnist —
November 26, 2016 at The Diamond Rock Club in N. Ireland —
RavenEye come to the end of another U.K. tour, and much to the delight of Northern Irish fans, the band found its way back to The Diamond Rock Club for its penultimate show. RavenEye, an English Rock band, formed in 2014 in Milton Keynes, England. This band is a lung-full of fresh air in the Rock Genre (and not before time) with a sound that comprises modern Garage and Blues Rock.
The RavenEye experience has to be seen and heard to be believed. When this band hit the stage, it’s as if the band flips a switch, and nitrous oxide is injected into its combustion chambers; they amalgamate to become a Mitsubishi Eclipse on a road race, and what ensues is nothing short of destruction and havoc.
RavenEye’s energy levels haven’t diminished in the slightest, even though these guys have become major road touring warriors – a U.K. tour at the start of the year, Download Festival, South America (Maximus festival) and another European and UK Tour, with amazing headline and support slots along the way. (It’s an impressive résumé for their two short years and worth checking out).
The Diamond Rock Club is a small venue with a huge presence in the Rock scene in Northern Ireland. This stage has seen its fair share of the greats, including Doug Aldrich, Kip Winger, Damon Johnson and Toby Jepson, among others. On this night, the DRC belonged to RavenEye, and they had the crowd at “Hello.” As soon as the first notes of “Come With Me” drenched the air, the atmosphere changed from eager anticipation to sheer pleasure.
Nova, their astounding debut album released in September, consumed most of the set, while squeezing in a couple of crowd favorites from the Breaking Out debut EP that was released in 2015.
While the award-winning Blues guitarist Oli Brown holds his audience captive with *the* most incredible Rock/Blues voice in the scene right now, he rips into “Inside,” delivering catchy, warm rhythms and spits out venom in “Hate” with exasperating intensity – the volcanic eruptions continue side and back of stage. New drummer and the backbone of RavenEye Adam Breeze, (who only joined the band in August 2016) brings a fresh and thunderous new look to the band and can’t be seen half of the time as he is a blaze of exploding arms, sticks and hair. Speaking of exploding, it was hard to imagine how the Hell the drum kit stayed in one piece. The boy can hit – hard!
But Breeze also is commanding, taking control of the stage and has the initiative to entertain at every available opportunity while confidently steering and cheering on his band mates. The rapport that the band members have onstage is akin to a band that has performed together for four years, not four months.
The electric and exhilarating dynamics continued to raise the bar, the temperature and the roof as the boys went full throttle, pedal to the metal and sent the audience into a frenzy with catchy singalongs “Madeline,” “Supernova” and “Breaking Out.”
For “Nobodies Soul,” Brown discarded his beautiful blue Hofner in favor of his mic to jump off the drum kit, tour the floor and let gifted bassist Aaron Spiers take the reins while, together, they rummaged through the audience. Spiers shocked one young lad in the front row when he handed him his beloved bass and walked away. The audience was beside itself, which only fuel injected Brown even more to deliver the bluesiest tune in the set, with very visible and honest emotions emanating from every fiber of his being.
Spiers not only oozed character and a quality delivery with huge ear-to-ear grins throughout the entire show from behind his rich-toned bass, but he’s also a part-time carriage for showman Brown, who climbed on his shoulders to parade the venue in “Oh My Love.” Brown continued to play until he reached the very powerful solo, during which he played on the floor, surrounded by wide-eyed, gob-smacked fans. Brown is one of the greatest guitarists to witness live; talented doesn’t even come close to describing what this man can do to a six-string, and the crowd showed its appreciation in abundance as fans ate willingly from the palms of his hands.
A calm before the storm came when the entire venue was captivated through an exquisite performance of the beautiful “Eternity,” which is dense in heartfelt emotion; you only had to look at the faces of Spiers, Breeze and Brown to see that this thrilling three-piece band is a tight-knit unit. This also was the point when it became crystal clear that RavenEye is a band that cares and a hard-working bunch of guys with a unique and intimate connection and a solid future.
“Wanna Feel You” was a personal favorite on the night, and when it finished, Brown exclaimed, “This is when we should fuck off stage for a break, but we’ll just stay here with you guys,” which received a huge roar and applause as Brown bantered with the crowd, then the encore of “Hero” and “Hey Hey Yeah” all but tumbled the by now fragile walls of the venue.
The RaveneEye experience is, indeed, a band of brothers that is all about the music, the songs, the love of performing, the art of entertaining, bonding with their fans and delivering a top-notch show with no holds barred. Everyone in attendance at the show left exhausted and spellbound as fans had absorbed the energy and charm of the young guys of RavenEye. If you ever get a chance to see this band live, it never ends there, oh no, the guys came straight out onto the floor to chat, sign autographs and merchandise. The faces and the chatter of the crowd were heart warming. Go see a RavenEye show and hear the new album Nova. You will not be disappointed.
It is said, “Never make a decision on a bad day,” When Brown decided to put RavenEye together, it must have been a very good day indeed. He has now surrounded himself with the cream of the crop, and it shows. These guys live RavenEye; they have dreams, and they are living their dreams.
Live! | RavenEye Concert Photo Gallery
Come With Me
Oh My Love
Wanna Feel You
Hey Hey Yeah
Official website: http://www.raveneyeofficial.com/
Photos appear courtesy of Mark McGrogan.