For two decades Papa Roach have been the kings of Nu Metal, selling more than 20 million album copies worldwide. Now, the Californian band have landed in the UK, ready to treat us to their Who Do You Trust? tour at the Manchester Academy and show us that they’re still on the top of their game.
The evening started with special guests and opening act, Nothing More. Frontman Johnny Hawkins began the set on a 15-foot ladder above the stage, sporting a Papa Roach hoodie and letting off an air raid siren as he dove headfirst into the opening song, Let ‘em Burn.
The chaos continued as Hawkins returned down to the stage, now shirtless and barefoot, ready to effortlessly transition into hit songs such as Jenny and Go to War whilst providing limitless energy throughout. Their set ended with Hawkins in the air again, this time on a hydraulic drum-kit, engaging the crowd in a sing-a-long of Queen’s We Will Rock You.
Nothing More are without a doubt one of the most dynamic and visually stimulating bands out right now, as left us with a staunch reminder that seeing the support bands is always worth it. It was apparent in the room that this show won them a few new fans at the Manchester Academy.
After the interval, it was time for the main event to take to the stage, opening up with that classic lyric ‘Cut my life into pieces, this is my last resort’. No one was ready for Last Resort so early in the show, but it instantly got our energy levels through the roof as everyone relived their noughties glory days and screamed out the words.
The following hour and a half we were treated to back to back high-powered songs such as Scars and Between Angels and Insects. Watching Papa Roach, it is very apparent that this is a band with experience. Frontman Jacoby Shaddix’s powerful vocal and well-rehearsed banter with the crowd seemed effortless, drawing us into this shared experience. He was conducting us as well as the music, flawlessly moving from one song to the next.
When Papa Roach returned to the stage for their encore, Shaddix paid tribute to a hero of his, the late Keith Flint. “This one’s for you Keith” he says launching into his emphatic rendition of Firestarter. The crowd’s energy reached an all time high as the whole room from front to back bounced to the rhythm in a catharsis of emotion.
From start to finish, Papa Roach proved that they are more than just noughties rock legends. They put together a seamless show filled with plenty of old-school favourites and new hits, mixing in covers and conversation for an all together incredible evening. Any chance you get to see them should be taken.
Papa Roach and Nothing More will be touring the UK until 29th April in Newcastle, Edinburgh, Aberdeen, Norwich, Nottingham and Birmingham. You can find tickets on TickX here.