White Knuckle - Manchester Academy 3 - 6.2.07

They're barely out of the starting blocks and White Knuckle are already becoming one of the most talked about rock bands in the North West. Since their conception a few months ago they've attracted the attention of Trivium manager Justin Arcangel and been named as one of the ten bands to look out for in 2007 by Designer Magazine. Tonight at at headline slot at Academy 3 the band are faced with hostile security who end up ejecting several of their fans and a support band, the shockingly bad The Pynk Labels, who take it upon themselves to threaten much of tonight's predominantly teenage audience whenever they start moshing.

After the sort of intro music you'd expect from legends doing their 10th anniversary tour, White Knuckle kickstart a show which more reminiscent of Maiden than latter day metal such as Bullet For My Valentine or the aforementioned Trivium. Each song is an open-ended series of dual guitar riffs, pummelling thrashy drums and guttural roars. And there's so many anthems it makes us forget that we've been listening to naval gazing introspective emo for the past 2 years. "Lethal Injection Of Bitter Seduction" and "A Broken Heart and A Loaded Gun" are every bit as grandiose and epic as they sound whereas "Jamie Lynn" shows they can deliver towering ballads, even if it they do speed things up half way through the song.

Manchester has had a thriving rock scene for years that has borne out of it bands such as The Maple State, who recently toured with +44, but it could take White Knuckle to really put the bands true rock scene on the map. With a new song aired tonight, simply referred to as the Dragonforce song in a nod to one of the bands that inspired them, there's plenty more past the original demos and when the debut EP gets released later this year you guarantee 12 months later it will be changing hands for stupid money on Ebay. The mighty sound of White Knuckle has arrived!!!

Alex McCann
Photos: Alex Lawler

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