Posted on by Oran

It’s that time of the year again when we can finally unveil the final 35 bands that will be taking part in 2019’s Bloodstock Metal 2 The Masses Ireland campaign.


With one of the biggest application responses we’ve ever received since taking over the running of Metal 2 The Masses Ireland, the 2019 campaign is shaping up to be one of the strongest years to date with a blistering line-up of multi-genre Irish metal.

Overdrive brings you the final 35 bands that will be taking part in 2019’s campaign with a breakdown of each heat, so sit back and get familiar with each band some of which you will know already and others not so much.

Heat 1 – Saturday, January 19th


Black Tree

BlackTree are a Doom/Sludge outfit hailing from Dublin, Ireland. They are a cacophony of all things Sludge, with ambiance and the worship of the riff. Taking influence from everything from Alice in Chains to Crowbar and Cult Of Luna they craft slabs of heft.

Brothers Dominic and Joey Smith formed the band with Adam many years ago, after a while Dave came into the fold. This line up then had the recent addition of Lawrence from the Bay Area on bass and Vocals.

Expect – Riffs with intent. The Distant, Murky, Sound of Despair. More info here.

My Soul Divine

My Soul Divine are a four-member band based in Kilkenny/Port Laoise

The band formed in 2008 under the name TheEdgeOfExistance but after some time we dismissed the project and 2 years ago we decided to reactivate with new and fresh music and also new name MySoulDivine. 

If you’re fond of brutal, crushing riffs that relentlessly pummel your face into a concrete wall, then don’t miss them on January 19th. Check out My State of Mind lyric video here.

Get more info on the band here.


New Age Messiah

New Age Messiah are a 5 piece metal band from Limerick City. Started in late 2016, they offer music crafted from vastly different musical tastes that have helped them generate a niche sound that they claim “makes us who we are“. With a new EP earmarked for completion by mid-2019,  the band assures us “we certainly aren’t going anywhere but into the ears of those who hear us!” (Obviously!) Chem ’em out on M2TM Ireland Heat 1.  More info here.

The Virgin Converters

Taking influences of extreme metal, alternative metal and Groove Metal, these three masked maniacs aim to deliver a mesmerising and powerful performance, all while provoking a typical WTF? reaction.

Their bio reads; “Formed many years ago as a school covers band and after many lineup changes, The Virgin Converters have morphed into a force that cannot be witnessed anywhere else.

With hard hitting dropped tuned guitars, mesmerising beats and a mixture of high squeels and low growls these three lunatics are destined to turn a few heads. Not to mention the assistance of backing tracks providing hard felt sub drops and orchestral backup.

The Virgin Converters aim to please both musically and visibly with energetic, sweat-filled performances.” More info here

Twisted Autocracy

Formed in October 2012, Twisted Autocracy are a four-piece thrash metal band from Dublin. Three being Dublin thrashers and one being a Kenyan drum machine from the sunny city of Nairobi, brought together by a love of making music with politically themed lyrics and drinking.

Their music is politically orientated because they like to sing about how they see the world and they love nothing more than writing music and playing gigs! More info here.

Heat 2 – Saturday, February 2nd


Describing themselves as “Modern progressive metal band from Dublin, strongly influenced by bands like Karnivool, Tool, and LeprousBrik consists of Antonio Miguez Vega (lead vocals), James Dunne (bass, back vocals), Matija Novak (drums) and Xavier Torregrosa Jorques (lead guitars, back vocals).

For more information, please visit this link.

Dirty Power

Dirty Power is a hard-rock trio, formed in 2015 by a collective of international rockers based in London at the time. They have been touring Europe ever since. Fist-pumping, mosh-pit rock for the mind, might be a way to describe it. Heavy riffs, with big rhythms and singable choruses, might be another.

The band’s musical influences include alternative, punk, metal, progressive and modern hard rock. The result sounds like Rage Against The Machine riffs, with Nirvana arrangements and intricate, progressive instrumental sections.

Dirty Power is driven by an independent, D.I.Y. punk ethic, in everything from the writing and recording process, to the approach to touring and performing. It is a collective of musicians, so the lineup is subject to change. It is a trio devoted, above all else, to rock music. More info here.


Fornoth are a death metal quintet featuring Celtic-inspired melodic lead parts and a blend of soaring clean and searing harsh vocals, all wrapped up in the bone-crushing heaviness.

For more information, please visit this link.

Grey Stag

Describing themselves as “a sociopathic groove tyrant with a penchant for dank riffageGrey Stag have been crafting their intense brand of progressive sludge metal since their formation back in 2017.

Returning to M2TM Ireland once again, Grey Stag don’t disappoint. Check out the band’s new EP ‘The Guide‘ which was released in September of this year. For more information, please visit this link.

© Down The Barrel Photography 2018

Peasant To A King

Originally founded in Athlone, Co. Westmeath in 2015, PEASANT TO A KING was a three-piece band. By 2017 they released their debut single, Requiem.

In 2017 the band consisted of Ben Doyle, James Casey, Lee Clarke and Evan Smith. By 2018 PTAK recruited their lead guitarist Stephen Keane. PEASANT TO A KING had their debut show opening for last years M2TM winners, This Place Hell, before long they opened for crab legends I Set My Friends On Fire. More info here.

Heat 3 – Saturday, February 16th


Horrenda started as an Irish experimental Black Metal solo-project but became a full band. Darragh O’Connor played bass, guitars, keys and did the vocals for the early demos known as the “Horrenda – Solum Demos.”

After “Neronian Times” was released, Horrenda started gigging and later found a lead singer in Arron ” Nomad” O’ Shaughnessy. And after a few lineup changes, Horrenda rounded out with “Crux” on drums and Keith “Donn” Smith playing bass. The first full band demo “Vile Lament” as released in 2017. More info here.

Holocene Extinction

Founded in early 2018, Holocene Extinction are an up and coming Post-Hardcore Metal band from the heart of Waterford City, Ireland.

The band is made up of four friends and great musicians bringing you heavy riffs and headbanging breakdowns. The members of this band include Richard Power with his crushing growls and melodic vocals, Daniel Wilmott Walsh and his intricate, rhythmic riffs. They are matched by newly inducted Craig Ryan’s eruptive bass playing, and last but most importantly, Samuel Cunningham’s with his thumping fills that connect the whole to make insanely heavy tunes.

Their debut gig opening for former Metal 2 The Masses winner, Animator, and also playing in Dublin several months later, Holocene Extinction strive to become a household name in the Irish Metal scene.  They believe their music will “make you jump, bang your head and mosh like you’ve never moshed before“. Influences include Traitors, Slipknot, Lamb of God, Architects and many more. Get more information here.

Old Season

Irish Epic Metallers Old Season have forged their own unique sound from merging NWOBHM, Power, Prog and Melodic Metal influences. Their latest album ‘Beyond The Black’ was released in 2017 and has met with international acclaim.

The release of their EP in 2005, ‘Volume One‘ saw the band gain attention and amass an international following. Following this, they gained slots with bands like Sodom, Obituary, Brocus Helm, Anvil, and Doomsword to name a few.

The band played Up the Hammers Festival in Athens twice, and The Day of Darkness Festival before settling down to record their first full-length album – ‘Archaic Creation’ which saw the band build further on their fan base.

In 2009, Old Season played The Hammer of Doom festival. In the following years, lineup changes saw the band take a hiatus from live shows, before returning to the scene in 2014, followed by the release of their triumphant new record ‘Beyond The Black‘ in the summer of 2017. More information here.


Founded by members Luke Menton (Guitar), Ainsley Kavanagh (Vocals), and joined by Ryan Doyle (Guitar), Ronan Murphy (Drums) and Luke Butterly (Bass), Scathed are a metal band based in Dublin. The band were recently hand-picked to open for Halestorm in Dublin’s Academy back in September.

By pushing boundaries and combining elements of classic and heavier genres, Scathed present a sound that can only be described as hard driven riffs built on a foundation of heavy hitting drums and explosive bass lines, all tied together by an emotive vocal.

More info here.

Photo – © Down The Barrel Photography 2018

Screaming Giants

Screaming Giants are an innovative and energetic four-piece alternative/stoner rock band from Dublin, Ireland, founded in 2013.

The band recorded their debut EP, Found Footage in Red Lake Sound Studios in early 2016, releasing it in August of the same year. The EP was launched to a large crowd in Fibber Magees in Dublin, with support from Dublin bands Slouch and Nervvs. Found Footage was well-received in press reviews both local and national and went on to sell to fans as far away as Finland and the United States.

The band’s most recent single, Kill The Secret, was recorded in Westland Studios (Weezer, Placebo) and was released in May 2018. The song will feature on the band’s upcoming second EP.

The band’s atmospheric and energetic live shows have drawn praise among music press. Notable shows include the Black Sabbath aftershow in Fibber Magees, which the band headlined to a full house, the Clutch aftershow in the same venue, and supporting Versive in the Hangar in Dublin.

With the release of their next EP, the band are aiming to expand their local and national fanbase and play bigger and better shows all around Ireland and the UK.

Screaming Giants are:

Hugh “Jazzer” Loughman – Lead vocals, bass
David McKinney – Lead guitar, backing vocals
Ryan Byrne – Rhythm guitar, backing vocals
Liam Kennedy – Drums

More info here.


Heat 4 – Saturday, February 23rd


AeSect is a modern metal band based in Dublin, Ireland. Formed in the Summer of 2011, it has been the band’s aim to make an impression right from the beginning.

After regular gigging, the band garnered a name for itself amongst the live metal scene in Dublin and began gigging regularly outside of their hometown. In 2013, the band released its first EP, titled ‘Buried In The Undergrowth‘.

This 5 track EP was made available for free download as soon as it came out. It was well received and features staple tracks in AeSect’s live setlists.

After some line up changes the band returned with ‘Devour the Earth’ in 2015. This 6 track EP is the efforts of a band hungry to thrive and grow. It is a statement of intent for a band continuing to gain momentum.

The band has shared the stage with international acts and taken part in almost every large metal event that Ireland plays host to. They maintain a professional attitude in an ever-changing music scene and are known for their energetic performances. More information here.


Dublin-based Crossfire specialises in ruthless Thrash Metal riffs with a distinct nod to the golden era of the genre.

Having played across the country, in cities such as Belfast, Cork and Galway. The band have also notably played the Siege of Limerick twice in 2014 and 2016, and played gigs alongside metal legends such as ex-Judas Priest vocalist Tim ‘Ripper’ Owens and ex-Testament guitarist Steve Smyth.

They are known mostly for their classic old-school thrash metal sound and attitude blended with intense screamed vocals, progressive solo and bridge sections as well and lyrics ranging from light-hearted takes on drinking and partying to more profound imagery of war, horror and mythology.

The band released their debut EP titled “Bound In Skin” online on the 9th of March 2018. Their newest single ‘Who Goes There’ was released on the 28th of September 2018. More info here.

Organ Blender

Organ Blender are a Galway-based Metal band comprised of, Jay Grimm (Jason Coniry) on drums, Jason Kealy on bass guitar and Padraig Mckeown on guitar and vocals.

With what started as a joke in school about this cliche death metal band who used way too many references with their own name constantly, Organ Blender is now a reality. Still inspired by the theme of ‘…people dying in blenders‘ and ‘cheeze‘ the music itself isn’t as straightforward.

Their bio explains “While we incorporate many different forms of heavy music our main focus is making a badass song different to the rest of the album (duh..), ‘its what I’d want!’ From what’s happening in the current metal scene we definitely offer a unique live experience with a balance of groove, atmosphere and crunch that creates something really abstract.

We have just released our debut album ‘Temple Of Human Destruction’ on Bandcamp and free to stream on SoundCloud. Our current plans are to play support shows this December into the new year where we hope to gain support and welcome greater opportunities.” More info here.


Dublin Rock n Roll outfit “OverLockers” burst onto the Irish Music scene in February of 2018 with their debut single ‘Magazines‘.

Drawing from a vast array of influences both old and new, their energetic live shows help them to deliver on the no bullshit approach to revamping the Irish Rock n ‘Roll scene.

Overlockers” released their self-titled debut EP this summer which is available on all major platforms and have since been gigging extensively around the greater Dublin area. After a series of lineup changes, Overlockers are now set to take 2019 by storm. Get more information here.

Pain In Vain

Inspired by the likes of Bring Me The Horizon, Darkest Hour, Suicide Silence, The Black Dahlia Murder, Amity Affliction and Of Mice And Men, Pain In Vain bring their own stylistic mix to the contemporary end of the metal spectrum. 

As of October 5th 2018, the band released their debut full-length album Immolation‘ via. all streaming platforms.

They launched its release in the Irish capital’s Academy 2, which proved to be one of the bands most successful headline shows to date. Get more information here.

Heat 5 – Saturday, March 2nd


Antidotes is a band that has experienced a lot of change in the last year. With the departure of longtime frontman and songwriter Stephen Cannon (This Place Hell), the band has been forced to invoke radical change to its lineup.

For more than four years, the band has played around Ireland and developed a reputation for being a captivating metalcore group who prided themselves on hook-driven songwriting combined with heavy riffs, harsh vocals combined with clean vocals.

This style was especially apparent in the 2017 release ‘Just a Taste‘, the band’s debut EP. As Stephen was such an influential songwriter and performer, the band were faced with what seemed to be the impossible task, replacing him. They decided to replace Stephen with 2 members who would help bring out a heavier side to Antidotes.

With the new lineup, the band are ready to mark their return with the release of new music. New single, ‘Alone‘, will be  released in the coming months, showing people the direction that the band has decided to go in. More info here.

© Down The Barrel Photography 2018

Black Shuck

Formed from members of “Negativ Result” and “Na Cruithne“, “Black Shuck” is tight stripped down metal from Galway, a 3 piece outfit that is focused, heavy and ferocious formed in 2017, with the aim to go back to basics and to be forced out of the comfort zone of previous projects,

The bands the name chosen for the legendary hound – The Black Shuck. Expect an intense performance from these guys. Get more information here.


Coroza are a 4-piece Stoner/Doom/Sludge band hailing from Cork. Formed in 2015, they finalised the line-up in 2017 all the while writing riffs to pummel the masses into submission.

Coroza encompasses a wide range of influences whilst retaining the ethos of sounding like no one else. A well-received demo was released in 2017 followed by a series of gigs in Cork and beyond. After playing a successful gig at the Siege of Limerick in October 2018, Coroza plan to release their debut album, “Chaliceburner” in early 2019.

Coroza abides by one rule – “Tune Low, Get High“. For more info, please visit here.

Sixth Extinction

Bringing southern thunder from the heart of Tipperary since 2013! Founded in Clonmel by Greg, Wojtek and Dave, Sixth Extinction did not have a clear direction until the arrival of vocalist,Liam Ryan in 2014 .

Since then Beer and Monster energy fueled breakneck grooves and harsh, but melodic vocals have been the signature sound .

After releasing the debut self titled ep in 2016 writing began on the debut album, during those sessions the singles Vivid Black and Emerge And See were released to showcase the bands evolution and what to expect next.

The debut album  X and Why ?  was recorded at Antfarm Studios , Aarhus, Denmark with acclaimed producer Tue Madsen in the summer of 2017 and released in april 2018 with the focus on spreading the album as far and wide as possible.

According to the guys “Expect to leave Sixth Extinction shows with ringing ears, broken necks , a bruised liver and a severe dose of the Hangover Blues!!” Get more info here.


As their bio proclaims, “Limrock Metal – Featuring members of Shardborne and Three Hour Ceasefire.”

Trenchknife specialise in blast beats, distortion and death. Get more information here.

Heat 6 – Saturday, March 9th


Archaós are a four piece alt-metal band formed by four lads from Cork after meeting each other during their time at CSN’s Music, Management and Sound course.

With influences from a wide variety of Rock and Metal influences they began to mould their own original sound. Their passion for songwriting and hard-hitting music twinned with energetic riffs began to gain a lot of interest from the Cork metal scene.

They released 2 singles and their debut EP in 2017. They recently have released their latest single “The Chosen One” and are currently working on their follow-up “Liberation” EP which they plan to release in early 2019. Get more info here.

Dead Van Drivers

Dead Van Drivers started back in 2013 playing heavy riffs with the accompaniment of beer. Lots of both. With a few lineup changes over the years, Dead Van Drivers have crafted a unique, alternative hybrid or metal and punk with elements of multiple genres that have a tendency to grab the listener by the short and curlies and drag them down a dark wormhole. Get more information here.

Element X

Element X is a five-piece independent hard rock band active since 2014. The band released their first E.P. called “The Prologue” in 2015 and have played many gigs around Ireland since then.

As of 2018, Element X are hard at work on writing material for their second studio release, and also keeping very active in the live rock/metal scene. Get more info here.

Immaculate Deception

An aggressive, no-holds-barred live experience that made quite an impact during this year’s M2TM. Immaculate Deception are like taking a rusty blade to the throat while soaking in a cold bath filled with the guts of punk, hardcore and the beating heart of 80’s thrash.

We’ve been assured that they will be bringing a lot of piss n’ vinegar to the stage next year, so don’t miss ’em! Get more information here.

© Down The Barrel Photography 2018

Vendetta Love

Vendetta Love are a 4-piece rock n’ roll band. Formed in 2015 through a mutual love of loud rock n roll, they have been cutting their teeth and honing their craft on stages round Ireland and any rehearsal room that will have them.

Influenced by the late ’80s and early ’90’s binge of the Seattle and LA sound, they fuck their own mix of sweat, piss and beer into the test tube and the result is their own brand of love. A sickening, bastardized version of it.

With the recent addition of 2nd guitar player, Chris Craig, in early 2018, VL have been relatively quiet on the gig front recently, playing a few select shows such as with The Courtesans in Dublin in July and the Old Fort Festival in Laois in June.

Choosing instead to lock the world away, they have been focusing on writing new material to follow ‘Malachai‘. Whilst enjoying the reverie of their creative doomsday bunker, these cunts are hungry for the stage. Soon. 

More information here.

Heat 7 – Saturday, March 30th


In February 2010, four boys started a band with the dream of becoming a somewhat successful rock band. After one show, they realized we need a fifth member to make that happen.

Now, many years later and after events as troublesome as looking for a new singer and bassist who travelled as far as Spain to find himself, Creep have returned to try and recapture that dream of moderate musical success.

Piecing together musical influences from 90s grunge groups like Alice in Chains and Pearl Jam, classic hard rock legends from Queen to Guns & Roses, and a dash of doom metal, such as early Black Sabbath and Electric Wizard the boys have become men and are in the business of bringing heavy riffs with melody to the masses. And cans, plenty of cans.

Get more information here.


Imrama are now a 3 piece blackened thrash metal band based in Limerick. 

Formed in April 2017, they have just released their first demo, ‘Katyn‘ which is named after a massacre caused by Soviet forces and claimed the lives of 22,000 people during WWII, most of which were Polish P.O.W.s.

The band has been making headlines in both local press (Limerick Leader) and online articles. Burning metal had this to say;

Imrama are a band on the rise this year. They’ve been making their name the old fashioned way, by playing gigs around the country and are already starting to establish themselves as one of Limerick’s best up and coming bands“.

Get more information here.


Jenova are Irish Death Metal. Est. 2018. Having gigged relentlessly all over Ireland, Jenova has carved out a reputation for intense and exciting live shows.

They self-released both their debut single “Nail The Eye” and their EP ‘The Less You Know The More You Sleep’ in 2017 and have supported established international touring bands such as Pig Destroyer, Ne Obliviscaris, Oceans of Slumber, Unfathomable Ruination and Bloodshot Dawn.

Jenova was also delighted to received the ‘Metal Radio Ireland 2017 Best New Band’ award. Playing their first gig in November 2015 Jenova have gone from strength to strength. Definitely a band to keep an eye on.  More info here.

© Olga Kuzmenko 2018


Sectile are a five-piece progressive metal band from Dublin, Ireland. Drawing inspiration from a medley of different musical backgrounds, the classics up to contemporary metal, they are wholly committed to their songwriting craft: from light to dark, the band revels in every part of the spectrum, seamlessly alternating between soaring soundscapes, heavy ear-worms, to hard-hitting riffage.

Main influences include Opeth, Tesseract, Leprous, Gojira, Mastodon and Porcupine Tree, among others. Their 4-song debut EP was launched on November 2017 to much praise from independent press, being featured on radio shows such as ProgMetalMadness (UK), Heavy Elements (UK), CraniumTitanium, Rebel Radio and The Moshpit (Ireland).

Sectile have played the renowned metal festival ‘Siege of Limerick’ on April 2018, and twice played the final of 2018’s Metal 2 TheMasses Ireland. Their latest single ‘The Hunt’ was launched in October 2018, with the upcoming album in the works for a 2019 release. Sectile are now ready to rise higher and bring their music to wider audiences in Ireland and abroad. Please use this link for more information.

Zhi Ren

Spawned in the depths of West Cork, have emerged from winter’s cold embrace to impart onto you the fruits of their frigid seclusion. The newly formed four-piece are shedding the skin from past genres, creating a sonance that will take you through their twisted world.

Get more information here.


So, there you have it. The full line up for Bloodstock Metal 2 The Masses Ireland 2019. One of these bands will be playing at Bloodstock Open Air over the weekend of August 8th/11th with the most popular metal media on site, twenty thousand metal fans and sharing a bill with the likes of Sabaton, Scorpions, Cradle of Filth, Code Orange, Skeleton Witch, Hyprocracy, Queensryche, Metal Church, Rotting Christ, Death Angel, Dee Snider and many, many more bands that have yet to be announced.

Irish Metal at Bloodstock!

Each M2TM heat will be judged by a panel of judges and of course, you! The first seven heats are FREE ENTRY with official voting cards on sale from the judge’s table for €3.00 (One per person).

The semi-finals will have an admission fee of €5.00 per person which includes the official voting card and the final on May 18th will be an early bird admission of €5.00 from when doors open and then €10.00 thereafter. All shows will be taking place in Fibber Magees on Parnell Street in Dublin city centre.

Overdrive will also be hosting raffles for tickets to some big shows at each event with the purchase of the official voting card and sponsors will be announced in the coming weeks, so stay tuned to Overdrive for all the exclusive information.

For all enquiries, please email: with M2TM as the subject matter.

For your chance to bag Earlybird tickets to Bloodstock Open Air 2019, then use this exclusive link or click the graphic below for a discount price. Please note that this offer will expire in early January.

Oran O’Beirne 2018