Originally formed in York in 2013, four-piece group King No-One embarked on their ‘OOMM Tour’ the same day they released their debut EP of the same name. Making their third venture to the stage at The Sugarmill, they came back hard, bringing two Staffordshire locals with them.
Local Stokey’s, Camens opened the night up without introduction, evidently not needed as the audiences welcomed them to the hometown venue with whistles and screams. The deep rhythms from bass and guitar kept the room moving from the start. Their ‘Catfish and the Bottlemen’ style riffs and feel good vibes a crowd pleaser. These guys are easily working their way up the indie food chain.
Indie rockers, Faraday opened up their set up with a “How ya doin Stoke?” before launching straight into slick polished rhythms, singer Ryan fully adopting a very Beatles head shake throughout. The overall performance followed on perfectly from Camens, building upon the atmosphere they had previously lay down. Their lyrics catchy and memorable, you couldn’t imagine this line up without them.
The night was off to a strong start, the two previous bands pop-y vibe raising the mood of the room. But they didn’t even slightly reflect the headline performance we were about to receive. As lights dimmed screams erupted, vocalist Zach bowing as he took the stage. No intro necessary, the alt rock group launched straight into ‘Lemonade’. From the very first note it was evident this vocalist knew how to work a stage, crowd and every word of their music. He paired each beat of a song with spins and moves, moving around the stage with natural ease.
It barely took a whole song for a mosh pit to form, though full of rhythmic dancing rather than the more associated thrashing of metalheads. A confessional “We drank a bit too much last night and are a little hungover but it adds to the performance you seeee!” was met with screams and shouts of “Me too!” from the Stoke crowd. Over the next couple songs, a room that was full to the brim of people at the start managed to compact into just the first third. Bodies clambered over bodies to get as close the stage as possible, all swaying and bouncing as one collective.
Towards the peak of the night, the tempo was brought down with the overwhelmingly emotional ‘Dying List’. A song written by vocalist Zach in a dark part of his life. He introduced it saying “All I could manage to do was write awful shitty music, this song really speaks to how I was feeling [at the time].”, his piano rendition accompanied by softer guitar melodies.
He took a moment to absorb the crowd’s applause before saying “Ok Stoke, how do you feel? Im gonna ask you to not be in control. Feel the animal inside you for just one song!”. After, throwing himself head first into the most requested song of the night by the shouts of the crowd, ‘Out of Your Mind’.
The song wasn’t near over before Zach shouts to the audience, “Who here can play guitar?”, pulling an awe struck girl named Tilly on stage to finish the song with them. Her face was a picture of pure delight. As she was helped off stage, it was announced that they wouldn’t be participating an encore as they are “a waste of everyone’s time”. The vocalist then dedicated their final song ‘Antichrist’ to “anyone who’s ever been pushed around by society”, an LGBT flag draped over his shoulder.
As the night drew to a close and the final notes of drums rang out, Zach leaned into the crowds, held up by the arms of those below. He stepped back on stage and bowed before making his exit.
King No-One are a definite up and comer. Watch this space!
Check out all the photos from King No-Ones set at The Sugarmill down below:
(All photos by Joe Williams)