Kris Barras Band
The Electric Ballroom, London
26/03/22

by Paul Davies | Images: Adrian-Hextall

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The buzz as I walked into this venue could have lit up the whole of Camden if only it could have been transferred to the national grid.

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And, in these worrying times, that would have been a Barras bonus given his electrifying performance this evening. Camden’s Electric Ballroom has been the scene of many seminal live shows, tonight the Kris Barras Band added themselves to the innumerable list of luminary live memories at this venerable venue. With the fist-pumping strains of AC/DC’s Thunderstruck fading from the P.A.,

Barras and his committed band slammed onto the stage like musical lions uncaged, unleashing a rip-roaring take on Hail Mary from 2018’s The Divine And Dirty album. Following this, they delivered a high-octane searing set of career highlights. There are a few remaining connective tissues to the blues that kickstarted his career with Rock’n’Roll Running Through My Veins from his debut Lucky 13 release included in tonight’s set. Barras’ current songwriting tips over into hard melodic rock territory and to judge by the enthusiastic reception the new songs generated, especially Dead Horses, These Voices, and the punchy singalong of My Parade, he’s carried tonight’s crowd with him on this latest musical detour to a wider audience.

An acoustic interlude proved this former MMA fighter has a soft, velvety touch by playing an emotional homage to Taylor Hawkins on Foo Fighters’ Times Like These and a subtle cover of Skynyrd’s Simple Man. Second guitarist Josiah J Manning adeptly played kick drum and bass line pedals with his feet as he strummed along to these beloved songs. Dedicating Watching Over Me to the memory of his father, who played in Kris’ band, who passed away of cancer at the unfeasibly young age of 54 trembled the emotional Richter scale into the red zone. A feral Not Fading and Who Needs Enemies restored the full-on sonic attack of old and new tunes. Nobody was being casual about the return to normality tonight as the audience shed more than a few emotional skins as Barras ferociously whipped up a frenzy of fan favourites. Added to this, Barras’ pitch shift in his musical direction is paying musical dividends judging by his tight bond with tonight’s fanbase as reporting from the frontline of live music once more never felt so good.

Setlist

  • Hail Mary
  • Dead Horses
  • Rock’n’Roll Running Through My
  • Veins
  • These Voices
  • Ignite
  • Devil You Know
  • Wake Me Up When It’s Over
  • What You Get
  • Propane
  • Times Like These
  • Simple Man
  • Watching Over Me
  • Not Fading
  • Who Needs Enemies
  • My Parade
  • Lovers Or Losers

Check out the latest tour dates for Kris Barras Band here: https://www.krisbarrasband.com/tour