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Ferret Fabrications Alex Treacher Photography

Concerts I've seen


4/5 Nightwish Wembley Arena
3/5 Arch Enemy 19th December 2015
2/5 Amorphis

Nightwish advert Nightwish advert Nightwish advert Nightwish ticket Amorphis photo Arch Enemy photo Nightwish photo Nightwish photo Nightwish photo

Review to follow.


4.5/5 Triaxis Fuel, Cardiff
3.5/5 Endeavour 18th December 2015
??/5 Insuna

Triaxis advert Endeavour photo Triaxis photo Triaxis photo Triaxis photo Triaxis photo

Review to follow.


4/5 Operation: Mindcrime The Underworld
3/5 One Machine 12th December 2015
3.5/5 The Darker My Horizon
??/5 Simon Kavani

Operation: Mindcrime advert Operation: Mindcrime advert Operation: Mindcrime ticket The Darker My Horizon photo One Machine photo One Machine photo Operation: Mindcrime photo

Review to follow.


4/5 Gamma Ray Islington Academy
4/5 Serious Black 8th December 2015
3/5 Neonfly

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Review to follow.


4/5 Accept The Forum
3.5/5 Hell 7th December 2015

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Review to follow.


4/5 Judas Priest Brixton Academy
3.5/5 Michael Schenker's Temple Of Rock 1st December 2015

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Review to follow.


4/5 Doro The Garage
2.5/5 Archer 22nd November 2015

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Review to follow.


2.5/5 Divine Chaos 12 Bar Club
3.5/5 Toledo Steel 20th November 2015
2.5/5 Shrines
2.5/5 Prolapse
3.5/5 Second Rate Angels

Divine Chaos advert Divine Chaos advert Second Rate Angels photo Prolapse photo Shrines photo Toledo Steel photo Divine Chaos photo

Review to follow.


3.5/5 Cherie Currie The Underworld
2/5 Last Great Dreamers 18th November 2015
3/5 Alexa De Strange

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Review to follow.


4/5 Epica The Forum
3/5 Eluveitie 15th November 2015
3.5/5 Scar Symmetry

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Review to follow.


4/5 Control The Storm The Haunt, Brighton
3.5/5 Proscenium 13th November 2015
3/5 Orpheum

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Review to follow.


4/5 Ancient Bards The Underworld
3.5/5 Pythia 12th November 2015
3/5 Nightland

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Review to follow.


4/5 Leaves' Eyes Islington Academy
3.5/5 Diabulus In Musica 10th November 2015
3.5/5 EnkElination

Leaves' Eyes advert Leaves' Eyes advert Leaves' Eyes ticket EnkElination photo Diabulus In Musica photo Leaves' Eyes photo

Review to follow.


4/5 Jizzy Pearl The Underworld
3/5 The King Lot 8th November 2015
3/5 Indigo Down

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Review to follow.


4/5 Mötley Crüe Wembley Arena
4/5 Alice Cooper 6th November 2015
2.5/5 Saint Asonia

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Review to follow.


3.5/5 Stratovarius Islington Academy
2/5 Gloryhammer 3rd November 2015
2.5/5 Divine Ascension

Stratovarius advert Stratovarius advert Stratovarius ticket Divine Ascension photo Divine Ascension photo Gloryhammer photo Gloryhammer photo Gloryhammer photo Stratovarius photo Stratovarius photo Stratovarius photo

Review to follow.


3.5/5 Jess And The Bandits The Borderline
2/5 The Rising 28th October 2015
2/5 Liv Austen

Jess And The Bandits advert Jess And The Bandits ticket Liv Austen photo The Rising photo The Rising photo Jess And The Bandits photo Jess And The Bandits photo

Review to follow.


4/5 Delain Islington Academy
3.5/5 The Gentle Storm 25th October 2015
2.5/5 The Courtesans

Delain advert Delain advert Delain advert Delain ticket The Courtesans photo The Gentle Storm photo The Gentle Storm photo The Gentle Storm photo Delain photo Delain photo Delain photo

Review to follow.


4/5 The Poodles The Underworld
??/5 COP UK 22nd October 2015
??/5 Maverick

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Review to follow.


4/5 Tom Keifer Islington Academy
3/5 Sons Of Icarus 22nd October 2015

Tom Keifer advert Tom Keifer ticket Sons Of Icarus photo Tom Keifer photo Tom Keifer photo

Review to follow.


4/5 The Sisters Of Mercy The Roundhouse
3/5 Black Moth 18th October 2015

The Sisters Of Mercy advert The Sisters Of Mercy advert The Sisters Of Mercy ticket Black Moth photo The Sisters Of Mercy photo The Sisters Of Mercy photo The Sisters Of Mercy photo

Review to follow.


4.5/5 Triaxis The Cellar, Oxford
3/5 Toadstool 17th October 2015

Toadstool photo Triaxis photo Triaxis photo Triaxis photo

Review to follow.


4/5 Wolf The Underworld
3.5/5 Enforcer 13th October 2015
4/5 Dynamite

Enforcer/Wolf advert Enforcer/Wolf advert Enforcer/Wolf advert Enforcer/Wolf advert Enforcer/Wolf ticket Dynamite photo Enforcer photo Enforcer photo Wolf photo Wolf photo Wolf photo

Review to follow.


4/5 Freedom Call The Borderline
3.5/5 Dragonhammer 11th October 2015
3.5/5 Avenford

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Review to follow.


2/5 Furnaze 12 Bar Club
2/5 Maxdmyz 25th September 2015
3.5/5 Second Rate Angels

Furnaze advert Second Rate Angels photo Maxdmyz photo Furnaze photo

Review to follow.


4/5 Control The Storm Firehouse, Southampton
3.5/5 Metaprism 19th September 2015
3.5/5 Pretty Little Enemy
3/5 Alatyr

Control The Storm advert Control The Storm advert Alatyr photo Pretty Little Enemy photo Metaprism photo Control The Storm photo Control The Storm photo

Review to follow.


3.5/5 W.A.S.P. Troxy
3.5/5 The Treatment 11th September 2015

W.A.S.P. advert W.A.S.P. ticket The Treatment photo W.A.S.P. photo W.A.S.P. photo

Review to follow.


4/5 Powerwolf Islington Academy
4/5 Orden Ogan 9th September 2015
4/5 Xandria

Powerwolf advert Powerwolf advert Powerwolf advert Powerwolf ticket Xandria photo Orden Ogan photo Powerwolf photo

Review to follow.


3.5/5 Control The Storm The Cellar, Oxford
??/5 Curvature 15th August 2015
3/5 Ded Orse

Control The Storm advert Ded Orse photo Control The Storm photo Control The Storm photo Control The Storm photo Control The Storm photo

Review to follow.


Sabaton Open Air Rockstad Falun, Sweden
4/5 Falconer 15th August 2015
4.5/5 Sabaton
??/5 Candlemass
3/5 Sonata Arctica
??/5 Orden Ogan
3.5/5 Persuader
3.5/5 Brainstorm
3.5/5 Gloryhammer
2/5 Lost Society
3.5/5 Wisdom

Sabaton Open Air advert Sabaton Open Air advert Wisdom photo Lost Society photo Gloryhammer photo Brainstorm photo Persuader photo Sonata Arctica photo Sabaton photo Sabaton photo Sabaton photo Falconer photo

Review to follow.


Sabaton Open Air Rockstad Falun, Sweden
4/5 Snowy Shaw 14th August 2015
3/5 Kreator
4/5 Civil War
3.5/5 Wintersun
3.5/5 Leaves' Eyes
2.5/5 Krisiun
3/5 Summoned Tide
2.5/5 Atrocity
??/5 Saffire

Sabaton Open Air advert Sabaton Open Air advert Atrocity photo Summoned Tide photo Krisiun photo Leaves' Eyes photo Wintersun photo Civil War photo Kreator photo Snowy Shaw photo

Review to follow.


Sabaton Open Air Rockstad Falun, Sweden
??/5 Orphan Gypsy 13th August 2015
2.5/5 Raubtier
3.5/5 Cryonic Temple
3/5 SNO
2/5 Renaissance Of Fools
3/5 Cavanaugh
??/5 Mark Zero
??/5 Brother Giant

Sabaton Open Air advert Sabaton Open Air advert Cavanaugh photo Renaissance Of Fools photo SNO photo Cryonic Temple photo Raubtier photo

Review to follow.


Bloodstock Open Air Catton Hall, Derbyshire
3/5 Ozzbourne Again 8th August 2015
??/5 Godflesh
3.5/5 Rob Zombie
2/5 Onslaught
??/5 Hell Puppets
??/5 Trepalium
3.5/5 Black Label Society
??/5 Wretched Toad
??/5 Blind Haze
??/5 Burden Of The Noose
3.5/5 Lawnmower Deth
??/5 Scarred
0.5/5 Cannibal Corpse
??/5 Destrage
??/5 Snowblind
??/5 Left For Red
3.5/5 Ensiferum
??/5 By Any Means
??/5 Saille
2/5 Endeavour
1.5/5 Taken By The Tide
??/5 Sepultura
3.5/5 Old Rake
??/5 Animator
??/5 Big Foot
??/5 Alunah
??/5 Obey
??/5 Pro-Pain
??/5 Killer Hurts
2.5/5 Spirytus
2/5 Villainy
??/5 Orange Goblin
??/5 Incipit
??/5 Dead Label
4/5 Wolf
??/5 Tombstone Crow
??/5 The Izuna Drop
3.5/5 Hell's Gazelles
2.5/5 Agalloch
4/5 Triaxis
3.5/5 Skarthia

Bloodstock advert Bloodstock ticket Skarthia photo Triaxis photo Agalloch photo Hell's Gazelles photo Wolf photo Villainy photo Spirytus photo Old Rake photo Taken By The Tide photo Endeavour photo Ensiferum photo Cannibal Corpse photo Lawnmower Deth photo Black Label Society photo Onslaught photo Rob Zombie photo Ozzbourne Again photo

Review to follow.


Bloodstock Open Air Catton Hall, Derbyshire
2/5 Fleshgod Apocalypse 8th August 2015
3.5/5 Within Temptation
3.5/5 Jett Black
4/5 Hanowar
2/5 Planet Of Zeus
??/5 Victorian Whore Dogs
2.5/5 Opeth
3.5/5 Morass Of Molasses
??/5 Sumer
1.5/5 Burgerkill
??/5 Mordred
2.5/5 Death DTA
1.5/5 From Eden To Exile
3.5/5 Knock Out Kaine
2.5/5 Overoth
??/5 Akarusa Yami
2.5/5 Dark Angel
??/5 Circle Spectre Haunting
2.5/5 Battalion
??/5 Bloodyard
3.5/5 Godsized
??/5 Codex Alimentarius
??/5 Napalm Death
??/5 Pig Iron
??/5 Jasad
??/5 Soulborn
3/5 Korpiklaani
??/5 Divine Solace
3.5/5 Martyr De Mona
3/5 Ethereal
??/5 1349
??/5 Chaos Trigger
??/5 Ageless Oblivion
1/5 Mastiff
2.5/5 Xerath
??/5 Anihilated
??/5 Deified
2.5/5 Pist
3/5 Savage Messiah
2.5/5 Amethyst

Bloodstock advert Bloodstock ticket Amethyst photo Savage Messiah photo Pist photo Xerath photo Mastiff photo Ethereal photo Martyr De Mona photo Korpiklaani photo Godsized photo Battalion photo Dark Angel photo Overoth photo Knock Out Kaine photo From Eden To Exile photo Death DTA photo Burgerkill photo Morass Of Molasses photo Opeth photo Planet Of Zeus photo Hanowar photo Jettblack photo Within Temptation photo Within Temptation photo Fleshgod Apocalypse photo

Review to follow.


Bloodstock Open Air Catton Hall, Derbyshire
4/5 Delain 7th August 2015
3/5 Trivium
??/5 Witch Tripper
??/5 Conan
??/5 Hexis
4/5 Sabaton
??/5 City Of Thieves
3/5 I Am I
??/5 Piss Viper
??/5 Blackened Ritual
3/5 Gator Bait
2.5/5 Overkill
??/5 Hang The Bastard
3.5/5 Diatessaron
??/5 The Parallax Method
3/5 We Are The Catalyst
3/5 Ihsahn
3/5 Fire Red Empress
4/5 The Mighty Wraith
??/5 Forgotten Remains
3/5 Ne Obliviscaris
??/5 Enslaved
??/5 Countless Skies
??/5 Winter Storm
??/5 Mutagenocide
??/5 Re-animator
??/5 Belphegor
??/5 Foul Body Autopsy
4/5 Messiah's Kiss
??/5 King Leviathan
3.5/5 Armored Saint
2/5 XVII
??/5 Bast
0.5/5 Raging Speedhorn
1.5/5 Kryocell
??/5 Oaf
3/5 LOFT
2/5 Nuclear Assault
2/5 Silas
1/5 Mortishead

Bloodstock advert Bloodstock ticket Mortishead photo Silas photo Nuclear Assault photo LOFT photo Kryocell photo Raging Speedhorn photo XVII photo Armored Saint photo Messiah's Kiss photo Ne Obliviscaris photo The Mighty Wraith photo Fire Red Empress photo Ihsahn photo We Are The Catalyst photo Diatessaron photo Overkill photo Gator Bait photo I Am I photo I Am I photo Sabaton photo Sabaton photo Sabaton photo Trivium photo Delain photo

Review to follow.


Bloodstock Open Air Catton Hall, Derbyshire
2.5/5 Arnocorps 6th August 2015
3/5 Red Rum
??/5 Desecration
3.5/5 Metaprism
3/5 Reign Of Fury

Bloodstock advert Bloodstock ticket Reign Of Fury photo Metaprism photo Red Rum photo Arnocorps photo

Review to follow.


Wacken Open Air Wacken
4/5 Judas Priest 1st August 2015
3.5/5 Sabaton
1.5/5 Bloodbath
4/5 Rock Meets Classic
3/5 Danko Jones
3.5/5 Beyond The Black
3/5 Godsized
4/5 Powerwolf

Wacken ticket Wacken advert Powerwolf photo Godsized photo Beyond The Black photo Danko Jones photo Rock Meets Classic photo Bloodbath photo Sabaton photo Judas Priest photo

Review to follow.


Wacken Open Air Wacken
3/5 Monstagon 31st July 2015
3.5/5 Running Wild
3.5/5 Within Temptation
2/5 Megabosch
3/5 Cultus Ferox
3.5/5 Annihilator
3/5 Steve 'n' Seagulls
2.5/5 Ye Banished Privateers
3.5/5 Queensrÿche
3.5/5 Stratovarius
4/5 The Poodles
2/5 Kvelertak
4/5 Falconer
3.5/5 Ensiferum
4/5 Ancient Bards
3.5/5 Epica
3/5 Angra

Wacken ticket Wacken advert Angra photo Epica photo Ancient Bards photo Ensiferum photo Falconer photo Kvelertak photo The Poodles photo Stratovarius photo Queensrÿche photo Steve 'n' Seagulls photo Annihilator photo Cultus Ferox photo Megabosch photo Within Temptation photo Running Wild photo Monstagon photo

Review to follow.


Wacken Open Air Wacken
3.5/5 Savatage / Trans-Siberian Orchestra 30th July 2015
2.5/5 Ye Banished Privateers
2.5/5 Rob Zombie
3.5/5 In Extremo
4/5 Metaprism
2/5 Mr. Hurley Und Die Pulveraffen
2.5/5 U.D.O. with Bundeswehr Musikkorps
3.5/5 Skyline
2.5/5 Dream Spirit
3.5/5 Shiraz Lane

Wacken ticket Wacken advert Shiraz Lane photo Dream Spirit photo Skyline photo My Hurley Und Die Pulveraffen photo Metaprism photo Ye Banished Privateers photo Rob Zombie photo Savatage photo Trans-Siberian Orchestra photo

Review to follow.


Wacken Open Air Wacken
3/5 Europe 29th July 2015
4/5 Uli Jon Roth
3/5 New Model Army
1.5/5 Mambo Kurt
3.5/5 Grail Knights
2.5/5 Cultus Ferox

Wacken ticket Wacken advert Grail Knights photo Mambo Kurt photo New Model Army photo Uli Jon Roth photo Europe photo

Review to follow.


Ramblin' Man Fair Mote Park, Maidstone
4/5 Scorpions 17th July 2015
??/5 Jason & The Scorchers
??/5 Camel
??/5 Shooter Jennings
??/5 Anathema
2.5/5 Dream Theater
3.5/5 Hayseed Dixie
??/5 Haken
??/5 Bob Wayne
3.5/5 Saxon
??/5 Pendragon
??/5 Buck and Evans
3/5 Blue Öyster Cult
2/5 Della Mae
??/5 Messenger
3/5 FM
2/5 Frankie Davies
2.5/5 Touchstone
3.5/5 Toseland
3/5 Jess And The Bandits
??/5 Unto Us
??/5 JD And The Straight Shots
3/5 No Hot Ashes

Ramblin' Man Fair advert No Hot Ashes photo Jess And The Bandits photo Toseland photo Touchstone photo Frankie Davies photo FM photo Della Mae photo Blue öyster Cult photo Saxon photo Hayseed Dixie photo Dream Theater photo Scorpions photo Scorpions photo

Review to follow.


3.5/5 Tim "Ripper" Owens The Garage
2.5/5 Past The Fall 17th July 2015
2/5 Memories In Torment

Ripper Owens advert Ripper Owens ticket Memories In Torment photo Past The Fall photo Ripper Owens photo

Review to follow.


3/5 Evyltyde The Fiddler's Elbow
3.5/5 Brule 11th July 2015
2/5 Opensight
3/5 Immension
2.5/5 Parasite

Evyltyde/Brule advert Evyltyde/Brule advert Immension photo Opensight photo Brule photo Evyltyde photo

Review to follow.


4.5/5 Evergrey The Underworld
2.5/5 One Machine 20th June 2015
2/5 Awake By Design

Evergrey advert Evergrey ticket Awake By Design photo One Machine photo Evergrey photo

Awake By Design were frankly disappointing. After a couple of promising performances, this one was really not up to the same standards. It was bland and uninspiring, the band didn't seem interested and the vocals were flat for much of the set. I don't know if they were just having an off night, or if there were technical problems with the monitors or similar. Either way, the end result wasn't good.

One Machine were better and were clearly giving it their all. But their all didn't seem to be enough. The Encyclopaedia Metallum lists them as Progressive, groove, power and thrash metal, and there did seem to be a hint of an identity crisis with a bit of everything thrown in. There was some nice guitar work in places. The vocals were mostly gruff, with some metal screams thrown in at various points. The frontman was complaining about having hay fever and that affecting his voice. But even cutting him a bit of slack for that, I think the band are still missing something.

So on to Evergrey. There's little I can say, other than that they were absolutely on top form and put in a genuinely stunning performance. There was no stage set to speak of, no pyro, minimal lights. Just a band playing an outstanding set of metal. They were heavy as a heavy thing, melodic as a thing with melody, and very, very tight. Highlights for me were "I'm sorry", "Recreation day" and an outstanding "A touch of blessing". A very strong contender for gig of the year.


4/5 Dendera Upstairs At The Garage
3/5 I.C.O.N. 18th June 2015
3.5/5 Second Rate Angels
3.5/5 Shadowstrike

Dendera advert Dendera advert Dendera ticket Shadowstrike photo Second Rate Angels photo I.C.O.N. photo Dendera photo

Openers Shadowstrike were the only band on the bill tonight that I didn't already know. They turned out to be quite good, playing melodic metal with occasional hints at glam. The guitars and drums were both good, and it's nice to hear clean vocal harmonies. My only complain would perhaps be that the songwriting is a bit inconsistent. On the good songs, it's fine, but there were a few that I'd weren't up to the same standard.

I've seen Second Rate Angels several times now, and they're turning into a very good live band. However, this wasn't really one of their better performances. I couldn't point to anything they were doing wrong, but somehow it just didn't all hang together well tonight. That's not to say it was a bad performance, because it wasn't and "Dragged out" and "The lost days" were both very good. But they've been better in the past.

I.C.O.N. play heavy metal. No frills, plain old heavy metal, and they do it well. Good guitars, and good drums from Larry Paterson, too. But for me, it's missing something. The songs are OK. The vocals aren't outstanding, but are perfectly adequate (although it's sometimes hard to take a Bolton accent seriously). But somehow it just doesn't quite work as a whole.

I'd seen Dendera several times, and while I like the band, they'd been a bit lacking. The last time, however, had shown a marked improvement, and tonight continued that trend. The arrival of Season's End guitarist David Stanton had definitely given them a new dimension, and he once again showed himself to be a very good guitarist. But all of the rest of the band seemed to have stepped it up as well, and this was head and shoulders above anything I've seen from them before.


Download Festival Donington Park
3.5/5 Kiss 14th June 2015
4/5 Mötley Crüe
2.5/5 In Flames
3.5/5 Slash
3.5/5 Billy Idol
2.5/5 Blackberry Smoke
3/5 Tremonti
3/5 Backyard Babies
2.5/5 Von Hertzen Brothers
3.5/5 H.E.A.T.

Download advert Download ticket H.E.A.T. photo Von Hertzen Brothers photo Backyard Babies photo Tremonti photo Blackberry Smoke photo Billy Idol photo Slash photo In Flames photo Mötley Crüe photo Kiss photo


Metal 2 The Masses The Purple Turtle
2.5/5 Wychhound 7th June 2015
2/5 Overthrow
2.5/5 Wretched Toad
0.5/5 Halberd
1.5/5 Outright Resistance
3.5/5 Skarthia

M2TM advert M2TM advert Skarthia photo Outright Resistance photo Halberd photo Wretched Toad photo Overthrow photo Wychhound photo


Metal 2 The Masses The Face Bar
??/5 Victorian Whore Dogs 6th June 2015
3/5 Incarnadine Coven
3.5/5 Bitter Divide
3/5 Copper Garden
2/5 Gutlocker
1.5/5 Buried Above
1.5/5 Sincerely Yours
1/5 Zäd

M2TM advert M2TM advert M2TM advert Zäd photo Sincerely Yours photo Buried Above photo Gutlocker photo Copper Garden photo Bitter Divide photo Incarnadine Coven photo


4/5 Black State Highway 12 Bar Club
2/5 Louise Distras 5th June 2015
2.5/5 Revolvers At Dawn

Black State Highway advert Black State Highway advert


4.5/5 Triaxis Boston Music Room
2.5/5 Dead By Mourning 4th June 2015
3/5 Seven Sisters

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Seven Sisters were once again OK, playing a set of NWOBHM songs. The lead singer had a cold, and did remarkably well taking that fact into account. Highlights were "Lost in time" and "No guts, no glory". For me, it's just a shame that they seem to have explicitly aimed for a raw, recorded in their bedroom sound, where with a bit more polish they could be a much more interesting proposition. Dead Before Mourning were much the same as last time. They're competent at everything they do, but ultimately, it's just not for me. As I heard someone comment on the night, if you're in a band and have the choice of how you want the band to sound, why would you choose to sound like the bland Pantera clones of 15 years ago?

Triaxis have just released a new album, so it's unsurprising that the setlist tonight was heavily biased towards that, playing 6 of the 12 tracks found on the album. Despite that, they managed to omit my favourite track from the album, "End of time", and I think this is also the first time I've ever seen them not play perennial favourite, "Lies". Both of those may have been slight disappointments, but the band were firing on all cylinders and put on yet another strong performance. Furthermore, those minor disappointments were soon forgotten at the end of the set. For the new album, the band had run a crowdfunding campaign. One of the pledge options was to select a song that the band would cover. That seemed like a great idea, and I picked Rainbow's "Stargazer". Since I was in the crowd tonight, they chose to end the evening by playing it for me, for which I remain eternally grateful. It was one of those genuinely spine tingling moments and I had goose bumps throughout the whole of the song. A fantastic cover by a fantastic band of one of my favourite songs of all time. Outstanding.


The Dames Of Darkness The Robin 2, Bilston
4/5 Sirenia 9th May 2015
3/5 Whyzdom
3/5 Weeping silence
3.5/5 Bad Pollyanna
3/5 Apparition
3.5/5 Rainover
3.5/5 Aonia
3.5/5 The Fall Of Eve

Dames Of Darkness advert Dames Of Darkness ticket The Fall Of Eve photo Aonia photo Rainover photo Apparition photo Bad Pollyanna photo Weeping Silence photo Whyzdom photo Sirenia photo Whyzdom plectrum


4/5 Blaze Bayley The Barfly
3/5 Black Whiskey 8th May 2015

Blaze Bayley advert Blaze Bayley advert Blaze Bayley advert Black Whiskey photo Blaze Bayley photo


4/5 Triaxis The Carlisle
2/5 Facegrabber 2nd May 2015
3/5 Star Scream

Triaxis advert Triaxis advert

I'd been due to see Star Scream a few years ago, but they'd cancelled due to illness, so this was my first exposure to them. They're hard to categorize, but I'd say there are elements of hard rock, industrial metal, electronica and even big band swing. At times they reminded me of Devin Townsend's "Bad devil". I found them enjoyable, but I did also find myself wondering how much of what I was hearing was being played live and how much was coming from the backing tape.

Facegrabber were musically OK, but the vocalist shouting into the mic did them no favours whatsoever. I make no bones about preferring clean singing to harsh vocals. But the latter do have a place. It's just that when they sound as flat and monotonous as they did here, it's simply not something I want to be listening to.

I'd made a last minute decision to come to this show. Triaxis are one of my favourite bands at the moment, and I'm happy to travel to see them. The new album was due to be released a couple of weeks after this show, so unsurprisingly they were showcasing material from it tonight. I wasn't sure they'd be able to follow their previous album, which I thought was outstanding, but the new material sounds very good, particularly "Liberty" and "Stand your ground". Plus, they played a couple of my favourite tracks in the form of "Lies" and "Under blood red skies", and ended up with a crowd pleasing cover of "Hallowed be thy name".


3.5/5 Kill For Eden The Fiddler's Elbow
3/5 Evyltyde 29th April 2015
3/5 Redhead

Deep Machine advert Kill For Eden advert


Metal 2 The Masses The Face Bar
3.5/5 Incarnadine Coven 26th April 2015
4/5 Copper Garden
2/5 Biolith
3/5 From Dusk Until Dawn
2/5 Chaos Asylum

M2TM advert

Chaos Asylum played heavy hard rock. On paper, that should be my sort of thing. The problem was, they didn't play it very well. The guitar had way too much distortion, which yes, gives a crunchy sound, but it ended up just buzzing and sounding bad. The guitar solos sounded flat. Was the guitar out of tune? Was he just playing the wrong notes? I don't know. But it wasn't pleasant. The bass player's backing vocals were better than the lead singer's vocals. The mix was poor, and the overall effect wasn't what I was hoping for. From Dusk Until Dawn, on the other hand, were much better. The twin vocal approach looked worrying and sure enough, they played modern shouty metal, with a few clean parts. But the thing is, even though it's not my sort of thing at all, they were pretty good with it and put on an engaging performance, with some occasionally noteworth guitar work thrown in.

Biolith, on the other hand, were almost comedically bad. The music itself was fine. Thrashy metal. But the death growls were so poor and so unintelligible that they essentially turned into another instrument and it became a set of instrumentals. Sadly, not a particularly inspiring one. Copper Garden were much better, playing what I guess could be described as southern boogie rock. Good performances all round from a tight band playing to an appreciative audience. My band of the night. I'd primarily come to see Incarnadine Coven. I like my female fronted metal, and they're a band I'd almost seen of several occasions, but it had never quite happened. They weren't exactly what I was expecting. Sure, there was the standard symphonic metal with operatic vocals over the top. But at other times, there was an almost folk metal feel, with Gregorian style chants, which made for an interesting mix.

At the end of the night, Copper Garden and Incarnadine Coven were chosen to progress through to the final in a couple of months, which marks the first time in a very long while that I've agreed with the M2TM judging!


Metal 2 The Masses The Purple Turtle
2.5/5 Empire Warning 19th April 2015
2.5/5 ATVM
2.5/5 Bad Frankenhausen
2.5/5 Overthrow
3.5/5 Seven Sisters

M2TM advert

Review to follow.


4/5 Devilskin The Borderline
2.5/5 Forever Never 15th April 2015

Devilskin advert Devilskin advert

Review to follow.


4/5 Blind Guardian The Forum
2.5/5 Orphaned Land 12th April 2015

Blind Guardian advert Blind Guardian ticket

Review to follow.


4/5 Satyricon Scala
1.5/5 Oslo Faenskap 8th April 2015
???/5 Vredehammar

Satyricon advert

Review to follow.


3.5/5 Majesty The Underworld
4/5 Bloodbound 1st April 2015
2.5/5 Evil Invaders

Majesty advert Majesty ticket

Review to follow.


Metal 2 The Masses The Purple Turtle
2.5/5 The Grudge 22nd March 2015
1.5/5 Outright Resistance
2/5 Khaidian
3/5 Dead Before Mourning
3/5 Bad Solution

M2TM London advert

Review to follow.


3/5 Thunder And Lightning The Fighting Cocks, Kingston
3/5 Winter's Edge 13th March 2015
2.5/5 Awaker
??/5 Hundred

Thunder And Lightning advert Thunder And Lightning advert

Review to follow.


3.5/5 Control The Storm The Sussex Arms, East Grinstead
3.5/5 The Mariana Hollow 6th March 2015

Control The Storm advert Control The Storm advert

I'd seen The Mariana Hollow a few weeks earlier and was impressed with the direction in which they're headed. Tonight was more of the same, with them slowly moving away from alt-metal towards a more traditional metal sound, at least to my ears. Indeed, this was arguably the best I've seen them, particularly on tracks like "Come undone". They still have (and probably always will have) an alternative edge to their sound, and they're never going to be my favourite band. But nonetheless, they're a band I enjoy watching.

I'd seen Control The Storm several times before, and each time I felt they'd been massively let down by the vocals, which were simply not up to the quality of the music. Since then, they'd acquired a new singer, and this was to be the first time I'd see them in this incarnation. What a difference! Kate's voice isn't perfect, and she missed a few notes here and there. But what she has is a good foundation on which to build, which the previous vocalist was sorely lacking. A bit more stage time should see her perfect the weak points, and this was a hugely better performance than I've seen from the band before, and it's almost all down to the vocals. A cover of Evergrey's "I'm sorry" was a nice touch, and there was also a cover of Madonna's "Frozen", although not really being familiar with the original, it's hard to say how it compared. But this was, by far, the best performance I've seen from the band, and I hope a sign of things to come.


3.5/5 Beholder The Face Bar, Reading
2.5/5 Black Emerald 28th February 2015
3.5/5 Ded Orse
??/5 Evyltyde

Beholder advert Beholder advert

I hadn't arrived in time to see Evyltyde, so my evening kicked off with Ded Orse. Much as when I'd previously seen them, they put on a very competent performance of slightly bluesy doom. They clearly don't take themselves too seriously, as evidenced by the main mic stand collapsing mid way through a song. Rather than resurrect it, the singer just crouched down and carried on singing. Black Emerald continue to show promise. But as with the other times I've seen them, they seem to be missing something. They're certainly musically competent. I think it's that they'd benefit from better songwriting. Not a bad performance, but nothing to really inspire either.

Beholder were here previewing material from their soon to be released third album. I'd felt the second album to be a big let down after the debut, so I was interested to see how the new material fared. Jay Walsh from formerly with FWK and Blaze and currently playing with Bull-Riff Stampede was standing in on guitar until the band find a permanent replacement for Martyn. The new material sounds reasonably promising, with one track in particular (sadly I didn't catch its name) sounding very good. In addition to those, "The awakening" was good tonight too.


3/5 As Lions Barfly
4/5 Monument 11th February 2015
2/5 Stellify
3/5 Brutai

As Lions advert

Review to follow


4/5 Wolf The Underworld
3/5 Primitai 8th February 2015
3.5/5 The Heretic Order

Wolf advert Wolf advert Wolf ticket

Review to follow


4/5 EnkElination Barfly
3.5/5 The Mariana Hollow 21st January 2015
2/5 Scandelion

EnkElination advert

Review to follow


4/5 Queen The O2 Arena
18th January 2015

Queen ticket

Review to follow


4/5 Sabaton The Forum
4/5 Delain 12th January 2015
4/5 Battle Beast

Sabaton advert Sabaton advert Sabaton advert Sabaton ticket

Review to follow


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