Avatar / The Last Band – O2 Academy Islington, 23rd November 2016


A queue of bodies snaked through the N1 Centre on Wednesday night as fans waited for the doors of O2 Academy Islington to open. The show was just a few tickets short of selling out earlier in the week, and I wouldn’t be surprised if the remaining few got snapped up just in time.

This was the third date of Swedish band Avatar’s tour of the UK and Europe, promoting their most recent album Feathers & Flesh. It was an energetic and theatrical performance from the very start as frontman Johannes Eckerström emerged from a plume of smoke as a circus tent dramatically fell to the ground. The whole band were dressed in circus-themed outfits, with the stage props following suit. Eckerström repeatedly treated fans to a close-up of his (obscenely-long) tongue and used every inch of the stage for his commanding and charismatic performance.

The Last Band
The Last Band

On their Facebook page Avatar describe their music as “a dark, twisted circus sideshow that’s built around bombastically grooving melodic death n’ roll” and I think that sums up their performance fairly accurately!

Support came from The Last Band (also from Gothenburg) who I first photographed at Tons of Rock festival back in June 2015. They were a fun band to shoot back then and they certainly didn’t disappoint on Wednesday! Their hardcore/punk/metal went down well with the packed crowd as they played a set of nine tracks from their recently-released second album The Fall.

I recommend checking out the title track of the album if you want to get an introduction to their sound. I really enjoyed their set and hope they return to the UK soon, perhaps headlining a tour of their own.

Photos by Katie Frost Photography

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