A heavy, heavy night. The public waxed and waned, the songs between a bad Metallica album and Rage Against The Machine. Minor nitpicks to a solid offering that four bands well versed on their skills offered.
Straight out of the blue and using the available floor, Souldchart went into a very heavy side of rock. Growling and shouting was the name of the game for lead vocalist Lee Dunger while the band pummelled their respective instruments with ferocity and precision. They seemed to be taking places on the more spacious floor than in the tiny stage, but they were clearly enjoying the small crowd. Although the growling approach was a staple, there was a song that had some rapping in it, an interesting mix, made me think of the soundtrack to the film Judgement Night (which mixes a hard rock band with a rap band).
What the blood revealed took the stage. We’ve previously mentioned their rather good album and excellent single before to you. Their live show is probably just as full of catharsis as their flippin’ hard riffs and mad drumming become a maelstrom of sounds and emotions. Not even a cable malfunction that sabotaged the well-equipped pedalboard of one of the guitar players stopped them from doing a fantastic show (possibly the one with the bigger audience) but it mattered not; only a layer of effects was removed, the talent and emotion was there, plain as day, dark as the coldest night in a deadly forest.
Previously heard of Naisian because of the good people of Bleaklow (they had a split single a couple of sunsets ago). Their arsenal of instruments did mean that both the stage and the front of the place were completely taken over by them. Their instrumental hard rock & metal groove is quite intense and although the night was a bitter cold affair, they were not a single thawed emotion in the room. From time to time, a couple of frantically screamed lyrics added another layer into the thick profile of sounds of the band, a peaty top soil covering a hard, marl-like substance.
By the time Tacoma Narrows Bridge Disaster took the stage, the people were pretty wired (okay, me and my friend). But it was their night, their album Exegesis was just released (and reviewed) and it was the moment we were waiting for. They only had time to play four tracks, but, first, they were pretty good and strong, mixing hard moments with melodic passages and second, they played
‘Capillaries’ (actually, it’s ‘Calligraphy’, sorry) and that song is pretty much the one reason I went to the gig, so even if the cold walk uphill was unforgiving (got chilblains on me chilblains!), the four acts were a powerful antidote to the early February blues.