IMMEDIATELY selling out the city’s biggest venue on the back of a second consecutive UK number one album, it’s hard to believe Brighton pop-stoner-rock duo Royal Blood were one of The Great Escape new music festival’s breakout acts just three years ago. The Royal Blood tour of 2017 was a fully formed arena beast of a band.

For some older audience members (this reviewer sadly in that category), perhaps the strangest part of this spectacle involved lauded post-hardcore heroes At The Drive-In, reformed with great new album in*ter a*li*a, somehow supporting the band the headliners chirpily admit to “ripping off”.

Combustive songwriting partnership Cedric Bixler and Omar Rodriguez-Lopez certainly looked and sounded the part, with the brilliance of old favourites Enfilade and, of course, One Armed Scissor shining through. Still, this was sabotaged by a terrible mix, ensuring everything sounded under water, substituting hallmark complexity in favour of blunt noise.

Blunt noise was definitely ok for the headliners though, as their immense-sounding set exploded into life with the Muse-ish Lights Out, swaggering into the crowd’s affections.

Somewhere between Queens of the Stone Age’s woozy rock credibility and Foo Fighters’ big chorus-crafting, singer and guitarist Mike Kerr and drummer Ben Thatcher ticked all the requisite rock star boxes, from lengthy John Bonham drum solos to Freddie Mercury-style crowd direction. They even smashed a gong with a flaming mallet (!).

At times there was a suspicion that there wasn’t really much behind certain generic numbers other than a hefty rock barricade with sexy backing singers cavorting at the back.

But the whole affair was presented with such pomp that no-one could fail but be won over by the sheer size of heavyweight singles Little Monster and Out Of The Black, wringing about as much noise as you can from just drums and guitar.