Live Report: Static Dress – Key Club, Leeds

Static Dress are the worst kept secret in heavy music right now. After a string of supporting slots for emo staples Creeper, the ferocious Knocked Loose and even post-hardcore legends Funeral For A Friend, the buzz around the hardcore quartet is electric. With their sharp, emo-tinged metalcore, gruelling aesthetic and a debut album on the way, it truly feels like Static Dress are on the verge of something extraordinary. But before these guys fully take-off, let’s think about where it all started… and that’s how we find ourselves in the tiny basement of Leeds’ Key Club, limbering up for a night of non-stop chaos.

Local DIY punks Distort kick off the night, their scrappy, barrelling sound perfectly setting the tone of the evening. Jools only amplify the energy in the room; clad in velvet and long, red gloves, Jools’ onstage aesthetic is almost as fierce as their politically charged punk flow. The noise rockers dominate the stage, enraged poetry unfolding before you, every lyric cutting.

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By the time Static Dress take to the stage, the crowd is more than ready for them. As the rumbling of drums announces the start of ‘sweet.’, the motion is immediate – a wave of bodies pushing, pulling, desperate to empty out the centre of the room, only to crash right back in when the beat drops. Frontman Olli Appleyard, sensing the eagerness, calls for the room to “split!” – marking the first wall of death of the evening, only one song in.

That high, unhinged level of energy remains throughout. The atmosphere is positively carnal, fans hungrily diving into pit after pit, rise and repeat. As people screech along to classic tracks, crying along to ‘safeword’, or limbs flying during ‘for the attention of…’, you can’t help but note how perfect Static Dress suit Key Club. The sweaty basement reflects the feeling that Static Dress tracks capture – that intimate rage that’s barely contained, bursting at the seams.

Regardless of how old or new a track is, the ferality of the crowd is guaranteed. Newer singles ‘such.a.shame’ and ‘Di-sinTer’, and even the totally fresh tracks taken off the upcoming May album release, are met with howls of approval. One of the teaser tracks is particularly ferocious, bodies colliding magnificently, a persistent flow of crowdsurfers held aloft throughout – so, fair to say that the masses totally eat it up.

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What is most exhilirating about the evening is Appleyard’s stage presence. All the recent touring has clearly accelerated his maturation as a frontman, his command of the crowd confident and assured. He’s a total firecracker, fizzling with a charm that makes it impossible not to fall under his spell. Vocally, his performance is also razor-sharp, moving between metalcore screams and delicate croons seamlessly.

As ‘clean.’ closes off the set, and the crowd’s echoes of “don’t speak” linger in the air, the future of Static Dress feels obvious. Truly at the forefront of the emo renaissance, it’s clear that Static Dress are ripe for success. I Hope You Hate This tour… well, sorry Static Dress, but we didn’t. Hopefully you can forgive us.

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Static Dress will release ‘rouge carpet disaster’ on May 18th.

Words: Emily Swingle

Photo Credit: Murry Deaves

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Link to the source article – https://www.clashmusic.com/live/live-report-static-dress-key-club-leeds

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