It’s the 29th of April and we’re back at the Big Red, North London for the first quarter final – continuing down the Road to Bloodstock. Tonight, five bands perform and two go through and this week, it’s 60% panel of esteemed judges and 40% of us lot in the trenches. Tonight, five bands aren’t enough, so M2tM invite two more to the stage, two non-competing bands who’re here for fun. Be ready for Jawless and Mortishead.
To be honest I’m late like the mad hatter and I arrive as Cavina near the end of their set. Apologies Cavina. Our fearless photographer/reviewer and M2tM main stayer Danni Garner is high on these guys. I briefly heard influences of Black Sabbath, Motorhead and Metallica, so my new aim is to catch a Cavina full set… maybe in the Semi Finals, eh?
London trio Butcher in the Fog woke me from my slumber of being late. They get me with solos from their bassist, their drummer keeps a beat to a hardcore flow, but these guys remind me of a prog metal band. The lead singer stands on stage with shoes off, socks on and he and the drummer swiftly remove their shirts. I hope this isn’t going to be a RHCP moment. How on earth can Yanni (guitarist/vocalist) handle the guitar strap chafing his skin? Anyway, I love this band, a great start for me and definitely a band to go and see in the future.
Up next is Dirty Ol’ Crow, based in London, and my judgmental side feels they could fit into a Scorpions tribute festival. I was wrong, these guys rocked the energy up to another level. Performing “Johnny Boy” and “How to Teach Your Master to F…” enticed the banged-out crowd, as the lead vocalist oozed his way around the stage blowing kisses to the ladies in the audience and singing about sexual prowess. The beat in the second tune feels like they could easily break into “he’s been dancing with… Mr Brownstone”, but they didn’t. I think it would be an interesting cover for Dirty Ol’ Crow.
On stage next are Annunciation, a death metal crew who formed in 2011 but never hit the live steps until 2014. After a few line-up changes they’re finally about to release their debut EP. These metal heads growl through the set with tracks such as “Genocidal Apathy”, but we also hear a nice little Inspector Gadget riff to lighten the mood. Their brutal pace will bring the flatline, so be aware when you know they’re coming to play, it’s going to be serious.
Final crew on stage before the two non-competitors begin are The Brood. Before you ask, no these guys are not those Attitude Era WWE faction of Edge, Christian and the leader Gangreal. They’re five guys based in London, who bleed hardcore with an essence of punk and death metal. Just a little introduction as they come on stage then these guys proceed with crunching riffs, heavy bass and vocals of pure aggression. If you’re a death metal fan, these guys will help your eardrums bleed.
Winners go through to the Semi Finals in June, so congratulations to The Brood and Dirty Ol’ Crow.
Photos by Danni Garner