Uprising 7 Review: Saturday M2tM Bands

A bottomless breakfast, a few cups of coffee and a taxi ride later, we find ourselves outside the O2 Academy. The sun is doing its best to break through the grey clouds of the desolate and forlorn genericism of the city, but we head inside to find the press room to set up before the doors open. As always, the Final for Leicester M2TM is hosted as the opening of Uprising – it’s a fantastic way to include the local music scene and I’d love to see more of the small and medium sized UK festivals and events to incorporate something like this into their events. The M2TM final consists of four bands, all of whom have earned their position at this final and the levels of talent on show made picking a winner, an unenviable task.

First up was Running with Knives, who had previously made it to last year’s final. Their style of well-rehearsed and easy going metalcore (also referred to as cookie monster metal – thanks Will Tudor) instantly got the room going. Along with superb vocal harmonies and impressive crowd interaction, they pulled out all the stops and played an absolutely killer set, eventually coming out on top and winning M2TM! Congrats guys and see you at BOA!!

The second band up is a genre that is making a serious resurgence at the moment. Feral State take to the stage and blast anyone in a five mile radius with crushing grindcore. The guitar tones remind me of 80’s crust punk and the mix is nice and clean but I would have liked to see them interact with the crowd a bit more. However, they did manage to get a pit started within the first 20 seconds of their set which is always a winner!

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Next up is Independent Trucking (yes that is their name) – a 3 piece instrumental band with shades of sludge, stoner and groove, incorporating Toolesque time signature changes and riffs so meaty, they’d give an abattoir a good run. I thought their guitar tone was a slither too flat, and although the mix was decent, I felt they could have tweaked a few pedals. As an instrumental band, you always have the added difficulty of interacting with your audience but for them to have made it all the way to the final is a testament to how good these guys really are!

The final M2TM band is a hardcore band – Break Them. They broke everything they could get their hands on and I’m pretty sure there were even a few broken hearts as they did not win M2TM, but this is definitely a band to keep your eye on! With Tom Amos of Vendetta HCUK heading up the team, they pulled off a belter of a set, littered with spinning kicks, chunky riffs that would impress a Rhino, and breakdowns that nearly imploded the room.

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