Gig Review: Metal 2 the Masses Heat 4 – Sanctuary Rock Bar, Burnley (27th April 2019)

What a month April has been, 3 great heats for M2tM so far and here we are with another great line up for the last heat before the semi-finals. There have been some amazingly talented bands go through so up to now and we have 4 more bands tonight hoping to join them.

Shrike – (c) Drew Scott

First band to rip up the stage this Saturday night is Shrike a melodic thrash/death metal 5 piece from Lancashire. Immediately setting the pace fast and hard, clean guitar riffs and soaring solos, thundering bass and drums backing the intense deep gritty snarl of the vocals. Joel leans over the edge of the stage as he screams down the mic before leaping off the stage into the crowd. They deliver a flawless performance but don’t stand still for a second and certainly threw down the gauntlet to the rest of the bands on tonight.

  • Artificer
  • F.A.T.E.
  • The Void Stares Back
  • Snakecharmer
  • In Pursuit of the Wych
Daybreaker – (c) Drew Scott

Next on the bill is Daybreaker from Blackpool who recently had an amicable split with one of the guitarists and decided to carry on as a 4 piece. I have heard and liked them a few times previously with 5 band members, so was curious to see how they sounded. Well, I was not disappointed; Mark, the remaining guitarist did an outstanding job of delivering the band’s unique blend of groove metal and hardcore riffs and instrumentals. Tom as usual running his drums into the floor and Lynden adopting his trademark crablike pose while he batters on his bass. Sam struts up and down the front of the stage roaring into the mic while they egg the headbanging crowd on.

  • Path of the Righteous
  • Dying by Degrees
  • Descent
  • In Death
  • MOAB
  • Used God Salesman
Darkstone – (c) Drew Scott

Third band on the stage tonight are Darkstone a 4-piece heavy metal band from Lancashire, who change the tempo a little. They deliver a set of melodic classic power metal with undertones of Alestorm. Intricate solos and songs full of clean vocals reminiscing on Kings and warriors. With vocals from the hair-flinging, wide-eyed frontman Richard Powell, good technical riffs and solos from Si Pendlebury. Simon Priestland provides the bass lines while Dion Mills keeps all together on drums. They deliver a powerful set and make worthy contenders tonight, which keeps on delivering great bands.

  • Kings
  • Swallowed
  • Alive
  • Aversion
  • Warrior
  • Serac
Agent47 – (c) Drew Scott

Finally tonight Agent47 who have the honour of being the last band to play the heat stages before the semi-finals. Another 4 piece, this time from Manchester, they play a mix up of genres blending heavy metal and grunge then skip across a few others in-between and yet do it well, giving them quite a unique sound. With Rik and Mark sharing vocals around Mikes and Marks complex guitar riffs, they bounce around the stage and play off each other as the crowd forms yet another mosh pit. Rik hammers his bass while singing and Dan makes his presence known by trying to run the drums off the stage.

  • Dissimulator
  • Grinder
  • B0rk3d
  • Suffer
  • Breath
  • One Bad Day
  • Junkie
  • TRRS

The final band takes leave of the stage after what has been an epic night of great bands, the crowd vote is taken, and the judges deliberate. Compére Bobbie Davies takes to the stage to announce the bands going through to the next stage… Very well done to Daybreaker and Agent47 who go through to the semi-finals in May, the crowd cheer but wait there’s still a wildcard slot to fill and after much deliberation it was decided Shrike would go through semi-finals as well.

So, there we have it. Well done to all the bands who have competed over the last 4 weeks, there has been ear shattering, bone vibrating, muscle aching (mostly the neck from too much moshing), excellence across all genres from every band. But sadly, only so many can go though to the next rounds which look like this…

1st Semi Final – 11th May

  • Shrike
  • Agent47
  • Bloodmores
  • Detest
  • Daybreaker

2nd Semi Final – 18th May

  • Krystallized
  • Dimensions
  • Phantom Sea
  • Grand Elder
  • Fate of the Fallen

Photos by Drew Scott Photographic

Shrike: facebook

Daybreaker: official | facebook | instagram

Darkstone: facebook

Agent47: official | facebook | twitterinstagram

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