The 'Prepare For Hell Tour' is the first major tour to roll through the UK in 2015 and let's be honest what a scintillating line up it is. Two big league heavy hitters , survivors from the Nu-Metal movement and one new kid on the block vying for their place in the echelons of the fickle world we call the music business, SoT took the plunge and ventured into the pit.
Having failed to gain access into the UK last June to play the Download Festival it was good to see that King 810 had breached the first hurdle. The remaining hurdle was yet to be overcome, could they live up to the hype and reputation bestowed upon them by the media? Quite simply the answer was a resounding yes; David Gunn commands the stage with a calculating menace, his low deep vocals penetrating and vibrating into your rib cage. With just a 30 minute set to showcase highlights from their debut album 'Memoirs of A Murderer' tracks included 'Desperate Lovers' and set closer 'Fat Around The Heart'. King 810, without a doubt these guys from Flint Michigan talk the talk and certainly walk the walk.
I really cannot believe it's been 20 odd years since the formation of Korn, having seen them on their first UK tour I can't but feel it should be them headlining, but who am I? A sparse stage set means that Korn are letting the music do the talking and when the bass kicks in it's at a bowel moving level. Fieldy's unmistakable bass rumble leaves a massive grin on my face, 'Here To Stay' & 'Love & Meth' the later from recent album 'The Paradigm Shift' sound massive. Johnathon Davis embracing his H R Giger inspired mic stand and really getting into the role of leader. With a funky medley ending 'Shoots And Ladders' incorporating a snippet of Metallica it's when Davis enters the stage with his trademark bagpipes for 'Blind' that the crowd goes apeshit crazy. What a fantastic finale to a set that oozed quality from the start and didn't stop until the last squeeze of those bagpipes.
Slipknot have not been without their trials and trauma's the past few years, the death of bassist Paul Gray compounded by the sudden departure of founding member & drummer Joey Jordison certainly left many with a doubt as to if the band would ever record again. Latest album '.5:The Gray Chapter' is a belter and let's be honest you don't gain headline status at major festivals with a kazoo and lighter!
The stage set is immense, flames, huge devil head and enough red lights to rival Amsterdam a thousand times over. 'Sacastrophe', 'The Devil In I' and 'Psychosocial' are powerful statements of intent; Corey Taylor is a voice of our generation, with the vocal ability to be brutally intimidating whilst having the most subtle soaring harmonic vocals to rival any '80's AOR band. The 'Maggots' are out in force and while the circle pits turn, the flames burst into the air you cannot be anything but impressed as to how the hell this band got this big! The 90 minute set spans their whole career thus far, highlight 'People = Shit' just sees the sold out floor go mental. Slipknot, love 'em or hate 'em they are here to stay and may just still be doing this well into their 60's! A great start to the gig calendar of 2015.
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