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Live: STATE CHAMPS // Roundhouse, London

Playing their biggest headliner to date, State Champs took us along on a journey ‘around the world and back’ with their unforgettable set.

Celebrating 5th anniversary of their debut album, The Finer Things, and their most recent full-length Living Proof, State Champs brought a triumphant, career-spanning set to London’s Roundhouse last Saturday. Jam-packed with absolute bangers and highly contagious energy, the night confidently cemented them as a leading force in the genre.

If you’ve never been to a State Champs show, first – you’re missing out, big time, second – you need to know that the energy they bring is simply next level. Having seen this band live on numerous occasions, they never disappoint making sure everyone in the room is having the best possible time.

Fulled by adrenaline-charged rush of crushing guitars and rhythmic variations, the band dived headfirst into Living Proof‘s opener, Criminal. With a dazzling lighting and searing pyro effects, the visual accompaniment certainly added to the whole allure as they stormed through Frozen and Losing Myself.

“Welcome to the Living Proof. We’ve been waiting for this for a long time”, frontman Derek DiScanio addressed the thrilled crowd and the band continued to showcase their new material in the live setting. Thriving on dynamic tempo alterations and melodic outcomes, State Champs dropped us into the maze of brutally honest Mine Is Gold which evoked that raw fury and defiant temper they had mastered over the years. Striking with giant chorus and thought-provoking lyrics, the song certainly resonated with the audience, and so did Crystal Ball, which filled up the venue with arena-size elements and a massive chorus.

Pouring every ounce of energy into their dynamic and well-balanced set, the band ensured there was something for everyone. With punchy, in-your-face hooks, Remedy brought along some old-school vibes, slipping straight into the catchy melodies and impassioned vocals of Perfect Score.

Slowing down with acoustic, emotive serenade If I’m Lucky, it exemplified their capacity for inimitable, sincere moments, which saw the crowd getting on each other’s shoulders and singing along loudly. Reflective tones followed in Our Time To Go, which was yet another emotionally charged and inspirational song that  built up to a monumental crescendo.

State Champs are a band who ooze with radiant charisma and bold attitude when performing live. There’s no track that falls flat in the live arrangement. The instrumentation is executed precisely, the vocals deliver that distinct, growling and raspy tone at times, and the interactions between the guys on stage are on-point.

“I remember our first London show at The Old Blue Last. The support you’ve been given us is amazing. I hope you guys are not tired”, expressing their gratitude towards their fans the band brought the energy back on track with explosive All You Are Is History. And of course, it wouldn’t have been a State Champs show without the absolute hits, Easy Enough and Simple Existence.

Enthusiastic and electrifying throughout the set, high-powered Dead And Gone rounded the main set off heralding the approaching end of the show. Returning to the stage with Elevated and Secrets, it made for a manic encore which set hearts racing and feet pounding. With the lyrics of the last song “But it’s too late for me, now I’m as good as gone” hitting the ether and echoing throughout, it felt like a perfect moment to take a bow.

Gracing us with their music for almost a decade, State Champs have already managed to compile a genre-defying catalogue. They easily embody that great vigorous, cutting-edge spirit pop punk encompasses. With hard-hitting melodies and candid lyricism their fast-paced tunes continue to reach a wider audience. Standing the test of time, every song in their repertoire can serve as a ‘living proof’ of their musical vision and we can’t wait to be taken along for the next ride, wherever that may lead.

Photos: Kasia Osowiecka