Portsmouth’s Icebreaker opened it’s doors for the first time and assembled a fine array of local, and not so local, talent for the good people of Portsmouth to gorge upon.
It goes without saying, that WorshipMetal were there too, hell-bent on witnessing some ass-kicking bands lay waste to an audience hungry for Hard Rock & Heavy Metal.
With 70+ bands spread over 6 venues, clashes were inevitable so in true WorshipMetal style, we set up shop in a fine drinking establishment called The Deco, knowing full well that nothing but Heavy Metal would grace our ravaged ears.
Here are WorshipMetal’s pick of the bands that you should be seeing on bigger stages in the near future:
Brighton’s Sweet Ether may have been early on the bill but their energetic stomp through some heavy-ass grooves and fiendish melodies woke those in attendance out of any mid-afternoon stupor. Frontman Riggs was a whirling-dervish of energy, regaling the crowd with absurd asides and insane dance-moves which only added to the good-time atmosphere; when it’s this apparent that the band love what they do it filters through to the audience and Sweet Ether undoubtedly won over a few new fans over the course of their 30 minute set.
“Are you enjoying yourself?” howled Riggs on gig-highlight “Extricate”….you know what lads? Yes, yes we bloody-well were! 7/10
The South’s leading Party-Metal band were a joy to watch and with crowd interaction, sly humour and even choreographed dance-moves (surely more bands should be doing this!), Gravel Rash pound your ears and stamp a massive grin on your face with their Clutch-enamoured good-time grooves.
Big, fat, pendulous riffs and Southern-Fried vocals, courtesy of mutton-chopped-bear ‘Nero’ Taylor, had the crowd singing and clapping in unison and generally feeding off the infectious vibes that literally seep out of every pore of this great band.
Don’t even try to avoid this Rash, it’s contagious! 7/10
Dead Town Nothing
Decked-out in crisp white shirts, skinny black ties and shiny, shiny shoes you could be forgiven for thinking Dead Town Nothing were about to unleash some trend-obsessed, boring as f*ck, Emo-Core. But never fear, the old adage that appearances can be deceiving fits like a spit-encrusted glove as what followed was explosive, energetic and fully committed Punk-Metal anarchy….and it shook the foundations of The Deco to it’s core.
Dead Town Nothing’s fuel for hatred was clear to see as angular riffs and larynx-lacerating vocals, courtesy of uncoiled-spring-frontman Ash, blasted eardrums and programmed heads to bang hard! The frontman controlled the room, climbing whatever could be climbed and interacting with the audience, often physically, in a show of bravura strength and supreme confidence. Fortunately, the band have the songs to match the intensity of the showmanship and Dead Town Nothing’s, all too brief, set was an absolute triumph.
If you like your musical noise to be sincere and utterly merciless then Dead Town Nothing are more than worthy of your time, a WorshipMetal album review for these guys is imminent! 9/10
With their Remission-era Mastodon and Crowbar-esque clangour, Hummune’s elephantine-grooves and face-melting flurries of noise hit like a wrecking ball to the man-parts, an experience which was surprisingly welcome.
It’s a wonderful thing when a power-trio steps up and literally smashes you into submission and with The Deco packed to the rafters with slathering, beered-up Metal-heads, Hummune were the perfect fit for a day that had unearthed some amazing bands.
A footnote; WorshipMetal’s beard of the day award goes to frontman Stu, some damn fine whiskers sir. 8/10