Devilskin / The Fallen State Hot
Written by Central Electronic Brain     November 11, 2018    
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Devilskin / The Fallen State - The Live Rooms, Chester (UK) - 04 November 2018

It amazes me that a band such as Devilskin, whose profile is not terribly high in the UK, should travel half way round the world to play a selection of dates in some of this country's smaller venues, when some higher profile bands signed to major labels who are based in mainland Europe, can only make it over to play a one-off show in London (the list is too big to mention). Without even playing a note they already have my admiration and respect. They have recently supported Halestorm on their own trek around Europe, so it's a shame that Devilskin could not have featured on the UK leg of that tour.

Tonight's support act are Devon-based The Fallen State. They have supported Tremonti and Trapt in the past and also played a set at Download back in 2016. As they take to the stage it is disappointing to see only 25 or 30 people in the room, but this does nothing to deter the young 5-piece as they tear through a high energy fourty-minute set. They have 2 EPs to their name and have also released a song with Chris Robertson from Black Stone Cherry, called 'Nova', and the bulk of the material is taken from these. One new song, taken from a full-length album to be released in the first half of 2019, fits in nicely alongside the likes of 'Sinner', 'Burn It To The Ground' and 'You Want It' and it will be good to hear what they come up with after working with a real producer and a greater budget.

Devilskin 2018 Live 1

When Devilskin begin with 'Pray' the attendance has swelled very slightly, though I'm unsure whether the extra people are just friends and family or not, as they all seem to be very well acquainted during the post-show chats. A new album is in the pipeline, with a tentative September 2019 release scheduled, so the set concentrates on the 2014 'We Rise' and 2016 'Be Like The River' albums.

Fireworks - The Ultimate Magazine For Melodic Rock Music

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The songs are all well-established and well received by the partisan crowd. Jennie Skulander is one of the best female vocalists around at the moment (deserving of better recognition) and comparable to Lzzy Hale in style. What sets her apart is her ability to switch between powerful and passionate clean vocals and guttural screams with consummate ease (I'm sure some kind of throat lubricant is needed later though). Guitarist Nail and bass player Paul Martin stand either side like twins from hell, both shorn of hair and with matching colourful beards.

Devilskin 2018 Live 2

The musicianship is high quality and the guitars and rhythm section (completed by drummer Mic Martin, who is Paul's son) generate some in-your-face sounds with Jen's vocals on top. Favourites such as 'Elvis Presley Circle Pit', 'In Black', 'Mountains', 'Start A Revolution' and 'Animal' don't follow the strict verse/chorus/verse/chorus format and the thoughtful arrangements all feature very melodic and high impact hooks, despite the caustic nature of some of the riffs and Jen's singing. In the past the band have covered Dio's 'Holy Diver' to great effect, but tonight we get a cool version of Heart's 'Barracuda'. Several new songs are showcased, including 'All Fall Down' and 'Endo'. The video for 'Endo' was completed recently and details an illness common to many women. Jennie herself had to undergo surgery to remove an 11cm cyst on an ovary and the subject matter gets some serious musical treatment.

Devilskin 2018 Live 3

With 'Vessels', 'Voices' and 'Little Pills' to bring the evening to a close there is no let-up in the melodic aggression, and despite having a fantastic time I'm gutted for the band that there were not more people in The Live Rooms to experience it. Speaking to Paul, Jennie and Nail after the show it is clear that they love coming to the UK (they actually have a lot of family here), so I only hope they continue to return as Devilskin.

Review and photos by Dave Bott

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