This has to go down as one of the best line-ups this year, it had the anticipation of an early morning bowel movement…. And holy shit, all three bands did not disappoint.
This was the first show on European soil for WarBeast, signed to Philip H. Anselmo's Housecore Records (who watches the whole set from the backline) they made an impression from the start. Good old Heavy Metal will always have its audience; in fact some bands will steer clear of using the Heavy Metal tag for fear of ridicule, not WarBeast however. Scott Shelby on guitar is quite simply the Beast of the band, 6'' plus of leather clad, studded guitar wielding beauty, a cross between Manowar and Pantera. His shredding is sublime, as are the rest of the band, Bruce Corbitt's vocals transcend well through the venue with a respectable appreciation from the gathered hordes. Throwing out as many songs the short slot allowed, it was made up mostly of tracks from the album 'krush The Enemy' good start from these Texas Metal masters. I'm sure we'll see them again in the not too distant future.
What a year Orange Goblin have had, with their 'Eulogy for The Dammed' album applauded by fans & critics it's their live show that really has to set them apart. First shock of the night Ben Ward seems 'sober'…well; sober in Ben Ward terms as he blasts out some powerful Goblin classics. Joe Hoare is thrashing his SG like a murdered prostitute while the powerful solid rhythm stomps on. Set highlight 'The Fog' powers through the venue as the Friday night crowd chugs beer like it was going out of production. Tonight Mr. Ward stayed on stage throughout the set, not once plummeting into the audience, as sandwich filler Orange goblin provided enough meat to keep all satisfied.
The first of only three U.K dates and ten for the whole of Europe, this is a relatively short tour for Down. After some monitor issues the first number is re-started and the place fucking erupts. Down have brought NOLA to the U.K, the place is hotter than Satan's ring-piece with sweat dripping from the venues roof! Phil's voice is the best I've heard in years, new tracks 'Witchtripper' & 'Misfortune Teller' sound stunning; Kirk & Pepper are ripping it up tonight. Any thought they may be a little rusty are soon abolished, as they launch into some Down classics, 'Lifer, Temptations Wings & Losing All' get the place screaming the vocals back at them. Anselmo is screaming his throat dry and twisting his punished body around the stage like a man half his age. The air is pungent with the smell of burning leaf and people are obviously enjoying their moment with one of the most influential set of people in Metal today. Jimmy Bowers tub thumping is solid as ever and security are soon awash with wide eyed bodies hurling over the barrier. The encore of 'Stone The Crow & 'Bury Me In Smoke' leaves the venue gasping for clean air as the humidity reaches Florida proportions. What a gig, what a line –up of bands, so good I even did it all over again the night after in Birmingham…The tour of the year? Possibly.
Words & Pictures