Skindred have been a band for over 15 years and in that time they have topped the US reggae charts and played a range of festivals including Download. The band released their sixth studio album Volume last month, and have since hit the road in support of it.
Skindred have always been a band to blend genres into something entirely new and that’s exactly what’s celebrated tonight. The evening opens with Yashin, (hed) p.e. and Crossfaith playing varying sets, with the latter delivery a headline-worthy run that’s lapped up by the Manchester crowd. While (hed) p.e. are politely appreciated, unfortunately Yashin’s set isn’t as well received on this occasion.
But it all kicks off in suitable fashion for tonight’s headliners. The room erupts as Skindred take to the O2 Academy Manchester stage, with frontman Benji Webbe responding with shouts of his own, “That’s deafening, Manchester. Calm down” before the band burst into Thunderstruck and Roots Rock Riot.
Following the frantic start the band is in no mood for standing around, and soon have every single person in the venue jumping along. Stand for Something, Rat Race and Cause Ah Riot all receive huge reactions from the crowd, as Webbe seems to be loving every minute.
Kill the Power and Nobody close out the set, before Benji dedicates a rendition of Happy Birthday to his sister who can’t be at the show. The crowd being in fine form jump on any chance at a sing-along and bellow back every word. The band remerge for one more song, and much to the crowds delight it’s Warning. Koie Kenta of Crossfaith and Jahred Gomes of (hed) p.e. also join Skindred for the encore, making a rather memorable set even more unforgettable.
Skindred’s unique approach to genre mash-ups triumphs again with a night that Manchester rock fans won’t forget in a hurry. The sheer pace at which the band attack their shows is enough to create some fantastic live moments, and ultimately makes the band a must see.