The Heavy Metal Muppets is a place for all things Metal with a particular emphasis on the London Underground Metal scene. We are a bunch of friends who have been into Metal since the late 80's and want to share our enthusiasm with anyone else who's prepared to listen. The format varies and we hope keeps it interesting for everyone, so keep your eyes peeled for reviews, interviews, memoirs and live videos amongst other things \m/

Tuesday, 17 May 2011

Metal 2 The Masses (Quarter Final) - Obzerter, Kemakil, Seed of Detest, Mask of Judas & Parasitic Earth - Nambucca - 15th May 2011

Sunday night and it was time for another round of Metal 2 the Masses at Nambucca. I don't go to all the heats, only to see bands that I know and offer my support. This time it was to see Seed of Detest, currently in my top five. I was meeting my mate Will who isn't a big fan of Sunday gigs but I managed to tempt into this evening of heavy metal goodness. So we arrived at around the same time but without flyers. If you are attending Metal 2 the Masses don't forget the flyer. Apparently they don't want to let you in without it for some reason... So boys and girls, the moral of the story is... Don't forget those flyers. There was a pretty good turn out, but I suppose that's par for the course it being the quarter finals and all, and we were a bit worried that it was full, but we did make it in though, so that was cool.
Parasitic Earth

It appeared that most of the audience were there to see the first band, Parasitic Earth. These guys are an energetic bunch and pretty tight too. I dug their set of deathcore which is how I guess is best to describe it. The singer was wearing a weird kind of wrestling mask during the set. I get where they're going with it but basically, every time I see people doing that it makes me think of Slipknot, and I hate Slipknot. Last week at the Gama Bomb show we saw guys in Way of Purity wearing balaclavas and they looked like dicks. I think the only guys who can get away with it are Basement Torture Killings because of all the extra theatrics that they inject into their shows. Having said that, this is a minor niggle as basically Parasitic Earth are an excellent band who more than deserve to be in this competition. I enjoyed the set and very much look forward to seeing them again.

Mask of Judas
Second to grace the stage was Mask of Judas. This band surprised me. At first I saw this very young, skinny girl shuffle on to the stage to front the band and thought negatively straight away. She had a surly way about her which was slightly off putting to start with. They blitzed through the first couple of tracks and I wasn't convinced, however, her voice was remarkable. I really don't know where the sounds come from. She seems too small and fragile to be able to make noise like that. By the end of the set my mind was changed. They gave a solid live performance and over the few songs that they played I was slowly converted. Definitely one to see live because the stuff they have recorded certainly doesn't do them justice. Check this band out just to hear Jo's vocals, extraordinary.

Seed of Detest
Third up, Seed of Detest, and the reason why I was there. I don't know what to say, apart from unbelievable. Their bassist Chris was back (even though he'd just come out of hospital and his jaw is sealed shut) and it certainly made a positive difference to their set. This is the best I have seen them play so far (no mean feat I can assure you). I still can't get over their age and the short amount of time they have been together. They seem like such a well established band. I'm so glad I trekked up here to see them again. They are genuinely good blokes that deserve good things to happen to them. CHECK OUT THEIR STUFF. Earache need to sign them pronto.

Fourth on stage were Kemakil. I had already heard about this band from my friend Steve. They are an absorbing thrash band from Ipswich. Clearly the oldest here but with no less energy than the young ones. They played a sturdy thrash set that takes you back, in a good way. You can tell these guys have been at this game for a while, they're very comfortable on stage and engage the audience with ease. They don't take things too seriously and are basically old school cool. Definitely worth checking out. They go through to the semi finals on a wild card, so if you get the chance try and catch that show, again at Nambucca on 5th June.

Finally Obzerter, the last on stage and the winners of this leg of the competition. Like Mask of Judas it took a few songs to get into this band, they're quite experimental, lots of weird noises and disjointed songs. This is obviously the point and what makes this band fairly original. I enjoyed it to a degree but definitely preferred some of the other bands. If you are interested in checking them out their music on facebook is pretty much representative of their live show. Strange music but not bad. I'm not sure that they deserved to win but I don't begrudge them. They were a good finish to another excellent night at Nambucca.

I personally think that Seed of Detest should have won, but I know that you reckon I'm being biased. However, for any of you that have seen them you'll know exactly what I mean. Overall a truly entertaining evening, enhanced by Will and again worth missing the last train home for.

Check out thegreyman youtube page where I got these vids from. Nice!

Wednesday, 11 May 2011

Gama Bomb, Mutant, Way of Purity & Abadden - 8th May 2011 - The Underworld, Camden, London

In typical fashion we had these tickets for what seemed ages and we were both fired up for it come the night. I secretly like having to wait, it somehow makes it more exciting, like Christmas. This was my second time seeing Gama Bomb, the first time they were supporting Sepultura at the Scala and boy was I impressed by their performance. One thing Boojay did say to me afterward was “wait until you see them at a smaller venue”. He was right of course.

Eliska, Toes & Philly Byrne
I love the Camden Underworld for keeping it real. I mean, they serve you actual glass bottles of Grolsch with the flip top, real hefty m’fuckers you can take in the mosh and brain people with. Stage diving is positively encouraged with absolutely no restrictions on how you do it. You know what I mean right, like at the pool with the no bombing sign, there’s none of that here. How the hell they deal with health and safety is beyond me. In fact I think this added danger creates its own safety measures. Everyone knows you run on stage throw your hands in the air and wait for the crowd to do the same. There’s usually always a big bastard who designates himself protector and looks out for the crowd surfing dudes (usually Boojay). This is all great when it’s packed but when it’s the first band on and the crowd is only 3 rows deep you’re going to head plant, and I’ll be watching and laughing my ass off.

I don’t really understand how Abadden were at the bottom of this billing, I’ve seen them before and talented doesn’t really describe this lot. Anyway they were first up for whatever reason and they played as if they were top billing. I love their energy on stage and that seems to have paid off big time for them with a fast growing fan base that really appreciates this kind of commitment. They play Thrash Metal like it’s supposed to be played hard, fast, and great vocals. They’re a great bunch of lads with good stage presence and we think Metal Hammer who were there to see Gama Bomb will be very impressed. In the world of Thrash they will be big and we’re  going to be along for the ride. Sweet.

Way of Purity
Next up were Way of Purity. Errrr...Thrash gig with Death Metal band and a lady vocalist, well two actually and a keyboard. I’ll say that again “keyboard”. The blokes in the band spent ages setting up their shit then put on balaclavas for their set. Dude, we’ve seen your face already, what the hell were you thinking, is this some weird homage to Slipnot (more like Shitnot). That’s all I have to say about that, they’re making me angry or is it listening to Betzefer while writing this.

Up on stage next were Mutant. This is the second time I’ve seen Mutant but I only caught half their set when they supported Evile so I was particularly excited about these guys because what I did see was so good. I’m not sure what to make of them not being signed and apparently word on the scene is they don’t plan to be. As long as they keep playing these gigs I don’t really care, they’re amazing to watch with a well thought out over the top performance to match the band name. The vocals are very echoed which sounds so cool when they announce that the next song will be “TURBO...HYPER...ULTRA...MEGA...POWER”. They seem to have designed the songs around what they expect of the crowd. They want you to mosh faster each song and the crowd duly obliged. Amazing.

Gama Bomb
Gama Bomb make me smile every time I see them. Philly Byrne is so charismatic as a front man you can’t help but be drawn in by his easy style of banter with the crowd and big cheesy smiles. It’s almost a guilty pleasure seeing them at such an intimate venue when you know they are destined for bigger things. They absolutely rocked the joint, I hadn’t seen this much stage diving before, it was crazy. We were also privy to some never before heard songs which was awesome and maybe something to do with Metal Hammer being there to review them. It was the longest set they had played yet and I could have done with it being much longer. They are in a league of their own when it comes to gigs this size. Can’t wait to see them again.


Tuesday, 10 May 2011

Seed of Detest, Eyes of Mutiny & F.S.I. - The Scream Lounge, Croydon - 5th May 2011

Goddamn! I've been really busy so it's taken me a while to get to this review. Sorry. This time I was joined by Lady Toes and we bumbled off to Croydon to watch Seed of Detest (I reviewed them the first time from the Metal 2 the Masses Heat 10 gig). We live in Wimbledon so it was the first time we got to use the Croydon Tram link, which was cool because it felt like we were on holiday. It took about fifteen minutes to get there and a short walk through sunny Croydon to arrive at The Scream Lounge. When you first walk in to this place it makes you feel as if they've just had a Christmas party and forgotten to take the decorations down. We ordered a couple of pints that were really cheap by London standards, served up by some jovial bar staff.

Anyway, the gig was upstairs where they have a charming little stage. First band up was called F.S.I. They began with a weird keybord intro that evolved into a sort of sludgy, hardcore type of metal which is the best way I can describe it (think Mastadon). The guys in the band seem to have been doing this for a long time. They had a stage presence that made you believe that the unit had been together for ages. The guitarist, Dave, had me in stitches pretty much the whole way through their set with his onstage banter. I think the accord between bearded band members certainly endears you towards them. They put on an enjoyable show even though the music wasn't 100% my cup of tea. Entertaining for sure.

Eyes of Mutiny
Eyes of Mutiny are a metalcore band and they were second up. I am old school when it comes to my metal so I have the same niggle with this band as I do with almost every band like this. To me the whole fashion thing that goes along with this type of music seems odd to me, apart from the tattoos, the style seems to be akin to people on a beach holiday with clothes that don't fit very well. The band themselves seem pretty competent and comfortable on stage. For me it was only OK but that's probably because of my taste. The clear ability of these guys is not in question.

Boojay with Seed of Detest
Finally, the headliners, Seed of Detest. These guys are brilliant. Not only are they brilliant but they are also really good blokes. When Toes and I made our way up to the upstairs bar they made us feel very welcome. After chatting with them I was staggered at how young they were (19-20). They play like an extremely well accomplished assembly, both seriously tight and astonishingly engaging. The guys told us that their bassist Chris was out of action because he'd recently come out of hospital (our best wishes go out to him). This would be a problem for most bands, but not Seed of Detest. They played an excellent show and I'm very glad that Toes and I tripped over to see them. Roll on the next show, 15th May at Nambucca. I just can't ever see myself getting bored of this band.