Royal Blood Shreds the Fox in Oakland

in SF Concert Reviews by

There are few bands out there today that can rock as hard as Royal Blood. Their groove is emphatic, their riffs electric, and their songs perfectly crafted little masterpieces that will inevitably take over your playlist. What is even more impressive is that they can pull it all off with just a bass and some drums. Maybe the recipe for good band dynamics?

Last night at the Fox in Oakland they brought their A-game and performed a thunderous set that will go down in the annals of rock n roll history. They kicked things off with two new songs off of their latest release, “Typhoons” and “Boilermaker.” Two catchy tunes that served to showcase an evolution to the usual dirty blues sound the boys are known for. Both received a warm reception, but it wasn’t until they pulled out their first heavyweight for the night “Lights Out”, that the place went wild. 

The band fed off of that initial enthusiasm the entire night. Encouraging applause and cheer at every turn, the crescendo came when in the middle of “Little Monster” drummer Ben Thatcher kicked into a wicked drum solo. Part John Bonham, part Neil Peart, the highlight came when the brawny rhythm player busted out his biggest drumstick of all, and slammed a giant gong strategically placed behind his throne. It felt a little Spinal Tap-ish at the time but also so so perfect.

And this is what Royal Blood brings to the table. A good time. An outlet for people who work hard all day, and just want to rock out at the end of the night. With singer Mike Kerr’s wailing vocals, exciting bass lines, and Elvis-like poses, he compliments perfectly his partner in crime on the other side of the stage. Together they weave an original modern version of classic hard rock, something that older generations yearn for and newer ones need to hear. 

Photos by Louis Raphael

An avid drummer whose discography includes albums on Digital Nations (a Steve Vai imprint), music critic Louis Raphael has always kept a pulse on the San Francisco music scene. After many years as the San Francisco Music Examiner for and, he decided to start Music in SF® as a way to showcase what the San Francisco music scene really has to offer.

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