What hasn’t been said about Front Line Assembly? True godfathers of the industrial scene, dance music innovators and exhilarating live performers, FLA are one act that truly earned the title of ‘legendary’.
They arguably represent one of the most influential acts of the EBM & Industrial scene with albums like Caustic Grip in 1990 or Tactical Neural Implant still being worshipped classics of the genre. Bill Leeb’s brain child always pushed the envelope a little further, most significantly with 1994’s Millennium, which helped to prepare the ground of the Industrial Metal wave of the late 1990s.
Their gig at the O2 Islington in London last Thursday as part of the European tour was a complete success. A look at the audience told that most fans must have been already around when FLA embarked on their legendary ‘Hard Wired’ tour, some perhaps even before that. So many people in their late 30s or early 40s on a midweek night, probably not the best circumstances for a raw Industrial performance. But the crowd was well heated up so that FLA could kick-start the show with the classic Resist and Killing Ground after making an intro with The Chair from Caustic Grip.
After Blood, from their Ectogenetic album, fans were clearly hoping for a chance to hear Deadened live, a dance hit favourite of mine. That moment came just after their performance of Plasticity, making my feet suffer but my soul bloom. Maybe their feet hurt too but this of course resulted in no stopping, nor slowing down; Bill Leeb, along with Jeremy Inkel and Jared Slingerland were giving it all to the London crowd! It was easy to establish an intimate connection with this being one of the smallest stages the band have played on during their time in the UK and you allowed the audience to better appreciate the intricacies of their craft. Leeb gave an emotional performance of Exhale, and with its melodic chorus, gave the crowd the opportunity to sing along with the man himself. I don’t know if it was because of the song itself, but this was the clear emotional highlight of the night; complete with a special vibe from the stage that’s difficult to put into words.
As they played the last song, Prophecy they drew their set to a close, unable however to ignore the standing ovation an appreciative crowd offered up. The applause continued well after the trio had retreated from the stage and the band simply had to come back twice for the encores. They chose Gun from Echogenetic and left one ultimate hit of theirs for the finale. Who can resist Mindphaser?
After the final second Encore with Iceolate, Leeb thanked the audience and left the stage. A proud moment after such an incredibly incredibly strong live show.
You can find out more about Front Line Assembly via their official fan page here.