William The Conqueror – Live in London ***** – Review

AWESOME !! One of the best live bands around.

Cornish trio William The Conqueror’s second album Bleeding On The Soundtrack was released in February and is frontrunner for album of 2019. This live show at the Lexington is a strong contender for gig of 2019.

An excellent opening set came from London indie folk band Night Flight. Led by frontman Sam Holmes the quartet finished a classy set with a track appropriately called Departure.

“What’s Up London?” was the most Ruarri Joseph spoke to the audience all night. This band don’t mess around and get straight to the musical jugular. From the first note to the last William The Conqueror gave a blistering 15-track set, grabbing the audience firmly by the throat and not letting go until the echoes of the last encore track Proud Disturber had faded into the distance.

With Ruarri Joseph on guitar and lead vocals and the powerful rhythm section of Naomi Holmes on bass and Harry Harding on drums, William The Conqueror make a big sound for a trio. Joseph’s guitar creates a wall of sound and puts Phil Spector to shame.

Every song was exceptional and the set included Cold Ontario, Did You Wrong, Soundtrack, Sensitive Side and The Burden. Two new songs made the show. WTC have a winning formula, strong songs, brilliantly performed, led by the ultra-charismatic man of few words. Holmes and Harding are note and beat perfect every time.

The standout track of the night and already a firm fixture on the setlist is Thank Me Later. This song is made for a live show and Joseph delivers brilliantly in his languid and laconic style, with super extended pauses for dramatic effect. He really enjoys playing this one. This could be a single, it’s witty, catchy and punchy.

Two albums in and William The Conqueror are already one of the best bands around, whether that be recorded or live. Holmes and Harding form the engine of this band, Joseph’s grunge chord-based guitar work is like a freight train and the songs the precious cargo. There aren’t many trains like this so buy your ticket and climb aboard, not that you can buy a ticket for a freight train, but for this one it’s worth clinging to the side and experiencing the exhilarating ride.

One hellova band. One hellova show. Incredible.

Words by Chaz Brooks

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