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Skid Row (w/ The Treatment, Enuff Znuff, Collateral) at O2 Forum Kentish Town [Show Review]

In an eruption of red, white and blue, Skid Row blasted out the always fan favourite “Slave to the Grind,” and the sea of leather and ’90s attire found a new lease on life.



So, to start, it is confession time; I have never really followed Skid Row. Now, this is not due to a dislike of their music or a distance for the bend themselves; no, this is simply because I have never actively sought out their tunes. Of course, Skid Row is one of those bands that you will have heard a fair few of their tracks sometimes without even realizing it. Myself, I fall nicely into this category, and it was an unexpected thrill to realize that I was singing along to almost every track on offer at this evening’s show. I clearly knew them better than I thought!

The Gang’s All Here” tour had an impressive three support acts placing this tour near the realms of a mini festival with The Treatment, Enuff Znuff and Collateral along for the ride. Alas, due to one small issue known as “adulting,” I was unable to make it to catch any sets from the aforementioned supports, much to my disappointment as I love checking out opening bands; I discover so many artists this way. Still, I did hear good things about all of them from reliable sources, so they will all get my stamp of approval!

So, the main event! The big one! The band I didn’t realize I loved until recently took to the stage to “Blitzkrieg Bop” by The Ramones playing them in, a rather fitting intro for the group. In an eruption of red, white and blue, Skid Row blasted out the always fan favourite “Slave to the Grind,” and the sea of leather and ’90s attire found a new lease on life and in that very instant, I forgot I was here to review a show and simply started rocking out! So, unfortunately, my usual well-documented chronology of events is absent, so specifics of any stand-out moments are hazy at best. This, of course, can be considered praise for Skid Row for pulling my attention away from what I was there for and reminding me how much fun a gig can really be when I put down the pen and paper.

The set was hit after hit, and new frontman Erik Gronwall (formally of H.E.A.T) won over all who had any reservations about his addition to the band. At one point, somewhere between “Big Guns” and their cover of the Ramones classic, “Psycho Therapy,” Gronwall humbly conveyed a story about the last time Skid Row played the Forum with his previous band in support. He reminisced about standing on the balcony watching Skid Row’s set, dreaming of one day joining them on stage to sing their legendary songs.

As I said, my recollection of the moment-to-moment events of the show is sadly hazy, which I have blamed entirely on the band’s exceptional performance. Still, I will say that with every song played, every lyric uttered, and every note strummed, the audience, as well as myself, were caught in the moment from start to finish. From old favourites like “Monkey Business” and “Livin’ On a Chain Gang” from the iconic 1991 record Slave to the Grind to “The Gang’s All Here” and “Time Bomb” from their latest record The Gang’s All Here (read our album review here), Skid Row was on top form the entirety of the show with the audience relishing every second. So much so, in fact, that they drew my attention away from the task at hand to provide you with a detailed account of the show, as previously mentioned. They were that good!

Skid Row’s Setlist:

1. Slave to the Grind
2. The Threat
3. Big Guns
4. 18 and Life
5. Piece of Me
6. Livin’ on a Chain Gang
7. Psycho Therapy (Ramones cover)
8. In a Dark Room
9. The Gang’s all Here
10. Makin’ a Mess
11. Tear it Down
12. Monkey Business
13. I Remember You
14. Time Bomb
15. Youth Gone Wild

Artwork for ‘The Gang;s All Here’ by Skid Row