Jam packed Productions have really not held back when it came to acting out on their ambitious plan. Five bands over the course of two years is no easy task and while the first leg of their tour may have started with light hiccup it really feels like this labor of love is starting to gain traction.
While the Mercury Live, Fit For A King show was by no means perfect, more on that later, the positives definitely outweighed the negatives. Jam Packed Productions really put some thought into what kind of bands would play with FFAK (Fit For A King). Often when watching local shows with an international act as your headliner, it feels like bands are just thrown into the mix, just to fill time, with no cohesive style. What you’re left with is a show that feels very disjointed, so I’m glad that this was not the case for FFAK.
It was a great night for lovers of metal and its many sub genres as it was abundantly clear that South Africa has a great pool of talent to pull from. While all the bands were great my stand out SA performance was definitely Atlantic South. They not only had an extremely tight set with well-constructed songs worthy of being a headlining act in their own right, but they also managed to get the crowd invested and ready for FFAK.
By no means do I want to get preachy, or go on a tangent with my philosophy when it comes to crowd participation, but I’ve always believed that the relationship between a band and its supporters is a symbiotic one. While it’s a bands duty to put on the best performance they can I believe the crowd carries some responsibility when it comes to turning a show into an epic experience by giving the band the support that is due to them and building on the atmosphere, which does not always happen.
Thankfully the Cape Town crowd showed up ready to be entertained and entertained they were. Now before I move on to FFAK my one negative of the show…. Less is more! While all the bands were more than worthy to be playing, there were far too many acts. Five Opening bands is just too many. Have two maybe three and let them play proper sets without feeling rushed, which this show did feel at times. I felt like the bands were trying to get through their set way to quickly and that pulled me out of the performance slightly.
That being said when FFAK finally got on stage they brought with them one mighty performance. While Mercury Live does not always cater for the best sound possible I was thoroughly impressed with FFAK’s sound. They were extremely tight and with only having one guitarist I found their sound to be surprisingly full. FFAK brought with them a lot of that old-fashioned Texan energy, with it seeping through their whole performance. FFAK kept the treats coming playing some new material the crowd had yet to hear and damn does it excite me for their new record.
FFAK’s set flew by with every song feeling like an event within itself, one that the Cape Town crowd just could not get enough of. All in all, this was a well put together event that has left me really looking forward to Our last Night and the rest of what Jame Packed Productions has in store for us.
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REVIEW WRITTEN BY: TIM VILJOEN