Kicking off the night was Polish death metallers Pedophile Priests. Based in Dublin, the trio hammer home some gut-wrenchingly heavy and thunderous riffage from the first beat. There are tones of early Sepultura from the Max Cavalera period throughout their entire setlist. They’re loud and tight, and the fills between verses in their first few numbers like “The Kingdom Hospital”, and “Modern Capitalism” are stunning. “Live on Own Way” I feel is their best song (but that’s just my opinion, as their followers lap up every tune going). Frontman Piotr “Niemiec” Niemczewski, shreds it up on stage and the sound is incredible, as the backing track of melodic synth plays in the background. Their debut LP “Dark Transgression of the Soul” is available on bandcamp, and is DEFINITELY worth checking out.
For more information on Pedophile Priests, just click on this link.
Second on the stage is Soothsayer. Another band from last year’s heats who have returned with even more power under the hood! They waste no time in revving it up again and bringing their sludgy doom metal all the way from Cork. “We are the Soothsayer” rings out as their signature intro starts their set list and it is full steam ahead. Warpaint at the ready, their numbers are long and odyssey-like. “Umpire”, The Greatest Lie”, and “Lunar Correspondence” make up their entire show, but its music that you can stick on and let it take you wherever you want to go.
The tone and duration of their music, allows the listener to drift off and still listen and concentrate all at the same time. It’s certainly worth putting on in your living room and closing your eyes for the full effect. It is also deathly effervescent – it is far from dull! Nobody ever said that metal has to be played at 100 miles per hour, and the lyrics are thought-provoking. There is little in the method of crowd interaction from barefooted frontman Liam Hughes, but it’s hard to headbang when the beat doesn’t allow it. But nevertheless, an awesome band and highly talented. I was happy to learn that they were on the bill, as I had a great chat with them at last year’s competition. Catch that here.
Next up is Jenova, from Dublin. These lads are serious contenders, because you can tell they have the smell of blood in their nostrils, and go for it. The riffs are amazing, the drums are thick and heavy, and the lyrical delivery is flawless. Talk about tight! The extra rehearsals are obvious here. Both guitars harmonize perfectly, as Jenova grab Fibbers by the throat and squeeze hard. Vocalist Brian Harrington’s voice is a gift – at one point he doesn’t even need the mic to be heard.
Proclamations of displeasure with Ireland’s current government are made, as well as multiple thanking verses to the audience, who are now the liveliest that they’ve been all night. There’s a level of heavyness with this band that touches the bottom of the deepest of ocean’s and you can hear it as they belt out their selection of Satanic lullabies, like “No Clean Hands”, “The Final Tide”, and “Nail The Eye” to name a few. The audience is now in full movement and the band loves it. Once there is any silence though, Harrington makes sure that the crowd know that votes count and urge the counts in their favor.
Following that smashing set is Bisect, a multinational band from all over Europe. At this point in the night, the crowd is starting to dissipate and it’s a real shame, because Bisect are nailing it. They are 100% a band that has their shit together. They have a record out called “We Are The Migrants” and it’s tremendously catchy stuff. The riff brutality thing is not easy to master and it’s damn close here. Their dose of grindcore, with a dose of punk here and there, is serious stuff indeed and bass player Maciej is losing his shit onstage which just adds to the bands performance. It’s a sign that the guys who write these tunes are heavily invested in them, both physically and emotionally. They enjoy their work and revel in the chance to express themselves in front of a larger crowd. Powerful stuff!
Last but not least we have Vendetta Love, a little bit slower than their predecessors tonight, but that pace picks up quickly. Lead guitar/vocals Shawn has the air of a Seattle grunge musician about him and the others follow suit. The type of metal they play is a mix of metal, hard rock and old-school grunge, which pleases me immensely. There is serious heaviness in their delivery though. Things don’t go smoothly for them unfortunately. Between string breaks (and you really can’t tell there’s anything wrong here, because like true professionals, they just grit their teeth and dig in), mic malfunctions and other sound problems, many would expect the band to take time out and fix what is troubling them, but time is precious here, and the clock is ticking.
They have 30 minutes to impress as many as possible here and they go on all guns blazing. They’re made for the stage. Their single “On and On” is perfect toe tapping and head-bobbing gold and I could listen to it all day. The crowd however disperses even more and it’s taking away from the atmosphere that was so lively 90 minutes ago. But its Saturday night I guess. The night is young, so are Vendetta Love, and their future is bright.
And so to the winners of Heat 2. Once again, the judges hold their heads on their hands and lament on the decision to send one band through, and it narrowly goes to Vendetta Love. Jenova get the crowd vote and we will see these guys back in April. Heat number three is on Saturday February 6th, in Fibber Magees, and the competition is already heating up.
Join us on February 6th for Heat 3 of the Bloodstock Metal 2 The Masses Ireland campaign and you could be in with a chance to win a pair of tickets to see SLIPKNOT and SUICIDAL TENDENCIES in The S.S. E, Belfast Arena on February 15th! To be in with a chance to win, simply come down to Fibber Magees on February 6th and receive your exclusive voting slip when you pay the €5.00 cover charge. Write your name on the back of the voting slip and hand it in to the judges through out the night. A winner will be announced from the stage on the night after all the bands have performed.
For more information on SVET KANT, SAINT SLAUGHTER, THE TAILOR MADE, TWISTED WRATH and AINRIAIL performing on February 6th, simply click on the graphic below.
Metal 2 The Masses Ireland will be sending one band over to play the New Blood stage at this years Bloodstock Open Air Festival in Catton Hally, Derbyshire. The winning band that will be playing at this years Bloodstock Open Air Festival, will be chosen by official Bloodstock Booker / Promoter Simon Hall and will also be in for consideration to play at next years Metal Day’s in Slovenia, to follow in the footsteps of 2014 winners Psykosis and 2015 finalists Dead Label.
The festival takes place from August 11th through 14th and will play host to some of the most crushing bands in the metal kingdom, including Slayer, Anthrax, Mastodon, Twisted Sister (last ever UK performance), Fear Factory, Behemoth, Venom, Gojira, Paradise Lost, Dragon Force and many more! Check out this video montage from last years gathering! Tickets are now on sale for BLOODSTOCK OPEN AIR 2016 and you can get yours by clicking this link now!
Bloodstock tickets are now on sale and can be purchased from this link or by clicking on the graphic below.
Heat 2 Metal 2 The Masses Ireland Photo Gallery by Down The Barrel Photography © 2016
Words – Shaun Martin.
Photography – Down The Barrel Photography © 2016
Content – © OVERDRIVE 2016