Live Review: Carl Barat & The Jackals

Date: 17/05/2017

Venue: Sebright Arms, Hackney (London)

Billed as a sweaty pub gig in an East London pub, Carl Barat & The Jackals’ triumphant return to touring was both intense, somewhat chaotic and entirely enjoyable. Debuting new songs and a hive of old ones too, it saw arguably The Jackals’ greatest setlist to date.

London’s Sebright Arms was arguably the perfect venue for a band like the Jackals, upstairs a traditional, pub setting and downstairs a modern, small yet intriguing venue. The newly refurbished stage has already played host to a Libertines accomplishes Trampolene (who’s very own Jack Jones was in the crowd to support), their set just weeks before was similarly disorderly and entirely intriguing. However, Wednesday’s grim, rainy afternoon was saved by the euphoric joy which saw the return of the London based band. There was never a dull moment as Carl Barat & The Jackals returned to touring in sublime fashion.

Opening with the already anthemic classic of “Victory Gin,” a raucous atmosphere instantly merged within the gathered crowd. Debut single “Glory Days” also worked a treat, it still sounds as new and relevant now as it did when released in 2014. Cries of “Evening Hackney!” echoed from the stage as the band seem thrilled to be back in the live setting following months of studio work in preparation for upcoming EP ‘Harder They Fall.’

New song “Sister” also got its debut outing, the track sees Guitarist Billy Tessio take to lead vocal duties for the first time in the band. It is a firm example of his talents and brings a huge sense of differentiation to the Jackals’s musical repertoire. In the live arena it sounds both heavy and well worked, a sure sign of some of the louder musical inspirations behind the band.

Tracks from debut album ‘Let It Reign’ dominated proceedings for the evening. Released in 2015, the album is already proving to stand the test of time with much of the audience singing along word for word. Highlights include “War of The Roses” and “The Gears,” effortless examples of their raucous, fast paced sounds. “Let It Reign” also allowed for a quieter, more melodic expression of sound; lyrically it is both strong and reflective.

The gig epitomises the legendary status of Barat. With Saturday seeing him play a stadium show in Birkenhead, and with festival headlining status being a constant for The Libertines, a return to a sweaty East London boozer may seem a out of place. However, it is a sign that he is true rock n roll royalty, and the Jackals being far more than just another musical outlet.

Their insane talent was shown through new songs such as “Burning Cars” and “Cracks,”  their upcoming EP will be a firm summer highlight. Launched around three years ago, The Jackals had already been through a meticulous auditioning process to even get to that point. Having formed (at the centre of the universe which we regard to be New Cross’ Amersham Arms) upon rigorous chemistry, 2017 sees the initiation of such a return with the band releasing upcoming EP ‘Harder They Fall’ via a Pledge campaign.

The band closed with a cacophony of anthems ranging between Dirty Pretty Things and Libertines classics. “Bang Bang You’re Dead” and “Death On The Stairs” sound as timeless as ever, whilst “I Get Along” proves that Barat as a wordsmith is in a league of his own. Inciting mass movement and mosh pits alike, the closure of the set resembled the chaotic affairs of early Libertines days, though with the unique twist of the Jackals’ marvellous musical abilities.

Their return was inspiring and impressive. With an EP in the pipeline alongside a UK tour in support, we already cannot wait to see Carl Barat & The Jackals once more!

Check out upcoming Carl Barat & The Jackals dates below:

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