Opening up tonight’s showcase are The Virgin Converters, who waste little to no time in burying the venue with their creepy circus sideshow-inspired performance. Having witnessed The Virgin Converters for the first time last year, this was a major step-up for the Dublin based duo as they launched a furious sound from the stage while in full creepy-clown/Jason Voorhees style character masks.
The recent release of their debut EP ‘The Murder Hotline‘ proves to be the main cornerstone of their setlist with a suitable tasty performance of the title track, ‘You’re Alone‘ and ‘Toxic Psychology‘ ripping through the venue like a freshly sharpened blade.
The Virgin Converters blow a sizeable hole in tonight’s performance with a captivating and delightfully brutal performance that generates a sizable crowd who scramble for their custom-made condoms which vocalist, Luke Butterfly flings from the stage at the end of their performance!
Next up is the Dublin-based progressive metal outfit, Sectile. Having entered last years campaign, the five-piece have since released their debut EP in November last year, there is no question that a surge of confident has exploded within the ranks, as they proceed to smash out a setlist that leaves jaw’s agape throughout the venue.
The undeniable vocal talents of frontman Gabriel Gaba dominate as he covers a range that most would struggle to compete with. Guitarists Mark O’Reilly and Michael Sheridan shred a web of Queensryche inspired gems from the stage, as bassist Cormac Hennigan lays down railway tracks made of a solid low-end groove for drummer Zachary Newman.
Sectile are a very powerful live band that has aged with tenacity and brashness and should never be underestimated.
Black Shuck open things up with a short introduction in which they announce this as their first show in Dublin. The venue’s capacity has escaped to the confines of the smoking/beer garden during the changeover, however, when the Galway three-piece unleash their brand of groove-based metal, a steady flow of curious punters begin to flock back the front of the stage.
Black Shuck are tremendous! Their engaging stage presence is gripping the audience tighter and tighter with each track off their unfortunately short setlist. Imagine a hybrid beast that was part Pantera/Lamb of God with a dose or two of Machine Head thrown in for the craic and smothered in groove with a tinge of hardcore here and there! Black Shuck proved to be a strong contender for the judge’s decision ahead of the final performance of the night from Grey Stag.
Finally, we come to the last band of the evening and it’s already been a nail-biting selection of showcases from this evenings running order. Grey Stag come out of the traps with a totally formidable sound which they themselves so accurately describe as “a sociopathic groove tyrant with a penchant for dank riffage.”
Imagine a prog-fulled beast that gallops across the barren landscapes of hell with a vocal sound that lives in the darkest corners of Lucifer’s backyard! Yes, folks, Grey Stag have it all and then some! For a three-piece, their sound is simply massive and loaded with enough sludge entwined with outrageously filthy riffs and guttural vocals that tonight’s audience were practically floating in a hypnotic haze. Keep both eyes on these guys, as their future looks bright.
With all performances completed the judges came to the difficult decision of Grey Stag with the crowd vote going to Sectile. Both bands will be appearing in the Bloodstock Metal 2 The Masses Semi-Finals which will be taking place next month. Please check the links below for all three events.
Full photo gallery courtesy of Alicia Goncales Photography © 2018
With Friday night headliners JUDAS PRIEST, Saturday headliners GOJIRA and Sunday’s bill toppers NIGHTWISH announced, as well as EMPEROR, AT THE GATES, DEVILDRIVER, WATAIN, SUICIDAL TENDENCIES, WEDNESDAY 13, JASTA & FRIENDS, FOZZY, COMBICHRIST, BLOODBATH, VENOM INC., MR BIG, ORPHANED LAND, KAMELOT, DORO, ORDEN OGAN, SEPTICFLESH, EXHORDER, PALLBEARER, MEMORIAM and many more, we’re more excited than ever for BLOODSTOCK 2018!
BLOODSTOCK will take place at Catton Park, Derbyshire on 9th-12th August 2018. Get additional information at www.bloodstock.uk.com.
© www.overdrive.ie 2018