• Charlotte Claber

Andy Black @ Electric Ballroom 05.07.2019 / Louder Live

Photos by Charlotte Claber / @chc_creative

From growth as an angsty teen in a wave of eyeliner and ‘war paint’ to a dominant figure in studs on stage Andy Black has undoubtedly broken out of his cocoon and grown rapidly from his years in Black Veil Brides and there is no doubt his dedicated ‘army’ of fans have grown with him.

London's Electric Ballroom was the kick start for Black’s return, this time for a tour celebrating The Ghost Of Ohio the artists second full length album without his BVB backing. Opening the show, from RuPaul’s Drag Race season 6 is Adore Delano, uniting two worlds of outsiders, Delano struts with power on stage, thigh high leather boots, acid wash Marilyn Manson shirt and an attitude. Straight in with Whole 9 Yards Delano has the crowd bouncing and energy. With a quick intro she rolls into Hello, I Love You a track that musically contrasts the previous with bouncy kawaii vibes though the lyrics are much darker. Between songs Adore jokes about her love life and how quickly she falls for people, which garners a huge response from the crowd. A stark contrast to the previous track, a quick cover of Toxic and a couple more songs bringing the drag icon to her final track I Adore You from her 2014 album Til Death Do Us Party. Delano holds the crowd captivated, not one note out of place the queen nails her final song and strides off stage after a quick goodbye.

The burgeoning excitement in the room leads up to darkness, and a whole lot of cheering. Andy Black’s band formed of guitarist Lonny Eagleton, bassist Niles Gregory and completed by drummer Sage Weeber all take their spots as they kick in with Ribcage. Black enters the stage to an eruption of cheers but it’s clear fairly quickly there are tech issues, Black powers through completing the song, whilst techs frantically run around trying to fix the issue, Andy finishes the track and goes on to chat to the first few rows of his audience about his “amazing support, Adore Delano” and proceeds to ask how their days were. Back up and rolling, Black goes into They Don’t Need To Understand a track that has the room in the air with the amount they’re bouncing around, Andy could’ve stopped singing and had the audience singing their hearts out as their vocals were definitely heard outside of Camden. Westwood Pieces and Broken Pieces amongst a few others fly by with Andy keeping the energy high, when he takes a break and plays the first of his covers for the evening. A high octane cover of Green Day’s 21 Guns has the audience smiling and everyone singing along. Black’s set flies by with tracks from The Ghost Of Ohio and The Shadow Side closing with a clear fan favourite, dancing shoes are on when We Don’t Have To Dance kicks off, despite the irony.

A long forgotten technical problem, a room of adoring fans, and near perfect vocals, Andy Black is undoubtedly a powerhouse of emotion and fragility with songs to nurse the feelings that many adoring fans feel vulnerable too.