Black Orchid Empire + North Atlas

Tuesday 3rd February 2022

The Black Heart, Camden, London

Last week saw the return of one of our favourite bands, Black Orchid Empire, finally kicking off their UK tour in London to promote their third album, 'Semaphore' at London's The Black Heart. To be honest, I forgot just how good it was to get out, air the lungs, nod the head and bop with a crowd again. Always a great venue in the heart of Camden, showcasing some great Rock and Metal bands they, didn’t disappoint for a post Bank Holiday Tuesday night. The album was released in 2020 (check out our album review), but of course Covidity put a stop to any promotion until now.

Tracks included 'Natural Selection', Death From Above', 'Motorcade' and undoubtedly, their top anthem, 'Winter Keeps Us Warm'. Singer/guitarist Paul Visser even managed some mini crowd surfing, such was the frenzy he, drummer Billy Freedom and bassist Dave Ferguson whipped up. The energy and power this band has, I’m sure, will culminate in a wider bigger tour in months to come, but get along to Radar Festival Guildford at the end of July if you didn’t catch them on this BOE motorcade that culminated in Glasgow last night.

Interestingly enough their support came from new Glaswegian Industrial Metal rockers North Atlas. Always refreshing to hear new blood cut it live, but North Atlas had a canny knack of transforming their Marvel Godlike appearance (yes lead singer Leon Hunter has a passing resemblance to Thor) to a monumental, quite spectacular sound, akin to Rammstein. Described as somewhere in between Biffy Clyro and Nine Inch Nails, their immersive sound is transfixing with outstanding thumping beats. I really can see these amazing lads going places, so if you get a chance to catch them this year, you won’t be disappointed.

Darren King