Live Review: State Champs, Seaway, Stand Atlantic & Woes - The Waterfront, Norwich 29/10/2018

State Champs - Waterfront - 29-10-2018 - London-15-2.jpg

We caught State Champs when they stopped by The Waterfront in Norwich as part of their UK tour, and along with the help of Seaway, Stand Atlantic and Woes, they certainly got everyone in the room jumping.

Entering The Waterfront at Norwich, the room was already filled with excitement just as Woes hit the stage. With a large queue still formed outside, many may miss a couple of the Scottish bands songs as security try get everyone through as quickly as possible. With doors opening at 7pm and the band playing pretty much straight away, this didn’t leave much time for anyone to get in as the first band played, and there wasn’t really much time for them to play any later with a total of four bands playing in one night. The packed night also included Stand Atlantic, Seaway and State Champs, all pretty big bands within the pop punk scene at the moment. 

Whilst Woes may have been lacking the crowd they deserved to begin with, the room slowly started to fill up and they delivered all the energy they had, constantly jumping up and down on the stage, with lead signer David Jess bridging the gap between the stage and the barrier on a few occasions to interact with the crowd. Woes are always a happy bunch to watch on stage and there’s never a dull moment as they constantly deliver excitement and fun alongside catchy pop punk songs. 

Stand Atlantic were next on stage who have built a decent name for themselves over the past year or so, especially with the release of their latest album ‘Skinny Dipping’ released just three days before they played their show in Norwich. Continuing delivering tonnes of energy, their bassist in particular was spinning around the stage, and when he wasn’t spinning around, it was his bass spinning around his neck instead. The band played songs such as ‘Lavender Bones’, which was the first single released from their latest album earlier this year, as well as ‘Lost My Cool’ and ‘Skinny Dipping’ which had also been released as singles ahead of the album release. This meant fans had time to learn the lyrics in advance and sing along to the new tracks, as well as older tracks such as ‘Coffee At Midnight’ which seemed to be a favourite amongst the crowd.

As Seaway all climbed on stage, Ryan Locke came on in his usual beanie and sunglasses combo; one that some may find as an odd pairing but somehow, he pulls it off really well and just looks like he’s ready to party with his cool shades under the dazzling spotlights, which is exactly what he did. Seaway toured with Woes earlier this year, and both bands are excellent in delivering huge amounts of passion on stage, filled with dance moves and jumps wherever possible. Just as David Jess had done earlier, Ryan Locke also bridged the gap from the barrier to the stage, making the crowd feel more included once more. As the band played ‘Shy Guys’; an older classic from them, fans erupted in excitement and screams ran across the room just before everyone sang every word along with Locke. 

Once Seaway had finished, State Champs slowly jumped up on stage one by one and took their positions. At this point, the stage set up had changed slightly and platforms had been added alongside some extra lighting. Derek Discanio, lead vocalist, started off hidden away in strobe lights as the rest of the band built up a beat before he ran up onto his platform singing the words to ‘Criminal’; the first track from recently released album ‘Living Proof’. Whilst the band are filled with up-beat catchy songs, this felt like one of the best to start their set with as everyone knew the words and it comes with an extra catchy chorus that everyone can shout and finger point along to in true pop-punk fashion. 

The night continued with many songs from ‘Living Proof’ being played; after all, it was the Living Proof tour, and everyone came prepared knowing every single word to songs such as ‘Frozen’, ‘Crystal Ball’ and ‘Mine is Gold’. Everything was so high energy and poppy until half way through the set. Everyone left the stage except for Discanio. His electric guitar left the stage too, and was replaced with an acoustic guitar. The whole room fell into silence just before he started playing ‘If I’m Lucky’. At this point, everyone got their phones out to record the special moment and softly sung along. The band slowly joined him back on stage before hitting back with ‘Our Time To Go’, which again is slightly more subdued compared to most of their songs but fitted perfectly after such a slow solo song. It slowly took the tempo back up again as they continued on with many more songs late into the night. The band seemed to play almost every song from ‘Living Proof’ with the exception of a few songs which left the crowd pleased and positive about the night with an all-round general buzz felt across the room. For their first date in Norwich, they did not disappoint and managed to build up a hefty crowd for themselves in what is considered one of the smaller cities to play in. 

Words and Photography by Hayley Fearnley