ROAM at The Dome, London – 8th December 2017
Reviewed by: Laura Yates
Despite being fairly late to the ROAM party, after seeing this lovely group of guys from Eastbourne support New Found Glory on their “20 Years of Pop Punk” anniversary tour a few months back, I was instantly charmed by their catchy upbeat melodies and use of dual-vocals. No doubt, opening up for Pop Punk royalty such as NFG is no easy task, but these youngsters did a stellar job of reminding us older fans that this scene is still very much alive and well, whilst also showing just what this newer generation of Pop Punk is capable of. Needless to say, after three consecutive nights hearing snippets of their new album, I went away still humming Playing Fiction and picked up a ticket to their next London show.
As well as joining their Hopeless Records family on that tour in the UK, and for a short stint in North America, the ROAM guys have had a very busy year. Also supporting the likes of As It Is, Lower Than Atlantis and playing a bunch of festivals too, they are ending 2017 on a massive high – having just released their new album Great Heights & Nosedives, they’re now seeing out the year on their own headline tour of Europe and the UK.
Friday night was the first of the UK leg, and their biggest headline show to date – which had also just sold out. I normally find that bands finish up in London instead of starting here, so it was actually pretty cool to have that starting energy and excitement before weeks of touring taking its toll. This was actually my first time at The Dome in Tufnell Park, and despite there being a bit of an awkward school disco vibe when I first arrived, it was a decent sized venue and as the place filled up and support bands came on, it sounded good too. I also got a pint for under a fiver, for those who don’t get out to gigs much in London – this is incredibly rare.
Supporting were Stand Atlantic, who did a great job of opening up, having come all the way over from Sydney for the EU and UK dates. Also in tow was Liverpool’s finest, WSTR – who definitely had a strong following in the crowd.
After another beer and a good sing-along to whoever’s cracking playlist was on between the bands (ft. The Story So Far, Four Year Strong & Trophy Eyes), red balloons were then dotted across the stage – a nice nod to the new album’s cover art (or Stephen King’s IT?)
ROAM then wasted no time getting the crowd moving, opening with the incredibly catchy first single from their new album, Alive. It was clear they were both excited and rather humbled to be playing to their own, sold out crowd.
The rest of the set was a well-considered blend of new and old, with the singles Guilty Melody & Playing Fiction, weaved in with the older favourites from their debut album Backbone, including Deadweight & Hopeless Case. Highlight for me was Flatline, which is the best track on GH in my opinion. We were also treated to a short intermission to celebrate guitarist Sam’s birthday, which involved some kind of Australian tradition called a “Shoey” – Standing Atlantic’s suggestion I presume. This is exactly what you think it might be – the act of downing a pint of beer from a shoe.
Overall, a great set and it was brilliant to hear more of the new album live. The boys’ UK tour wraps up later this week, and as they’re heading straight back out to Australia to support Knuckle Puck in the new year, it looks like they have a busy 2018 ahead of them too.
If you haven’t heard it yet, Great Heights & Nosedives is available on Spotify & Apple Music via Hopeless Records.