CRACKING REVIEW OF THE MANCHESTER GIG!!!
Thanks to Carolyn Davis at Quenched Music for the kind words…though now we have to write songs called Ease The Pain and Alabama Hotpot!!!
Initially feeling slightly out of my element here, I warmed up pretty quickly and even had a little mosh in the end. I stayed clear of the pit action though, something tells me it’s not advisable to join in with a pen in your hand.
We arrived just in time to join Jucifer on the third gig on their UK tour; melding doom metal and hardcore punk with a hint of southern rock from their early Georgia days to create their distinctive sludge sound.
I’m not sure sound control could have withstood the usual 60 amp set up that Gazelle Amber Valentine’s (great name, it has to be written in full) guitar usually runs through, but for only two people Jucifer managed to reach earth shattering levels.
There’s no interlude between songs, preferring to have Edgar Livengood’s rock-ride cymbals take us straight into the next track and relying on theatrics rather than banter to win the crowd over, with dramatic back-bends and hair flicks leading to the horned salute (which warmed my nostalgic heart) this was definitely the right crowd for that; even I joined in with a couple of appreciative head nods.
Grifter followed, a bit more my glass of ale, Ollie Stygall has the right amount of reverb working for him, a growl somewhere between AC/DC and Black Sabbath.
Ease my Pain compels the mosh pit to get a bit rowdy, while Alabama Hotpot is down and dirty filth (pun intended).
The tempo changes are subtle enough so as not to jar, but build you to the perfect climax.
The banter is a welcomed relief from the dramatic tension of Jucifer, ‘don’t be afraid to dance and if you’re female don’t be afraid to dance in front’, fat chance of anyone prying the hardened fans from the barricade at the front though. The place is filling up fast and I’m not surprised.
Quiet simply Grifter are good old fashioned Rock, meaning; great musicians coming together with a mutual love of all that is good and unholy.
As Orange Goblin takes the stage, we have lift-off. I’ve taken cover from the pit (which has gone into mosh overdrive) back firmly to the wall – this crowd mean business.
It’s reassuring to have Ben Ward commanding the crowd with his giant-like awesome presence, he could stage dive without having to leave the stage (I’m not really sure that makes a whole lot of sense, but I stand by it).
With the help of a few strategically placed red lights, there’s a blood bath on stage for the tribute to John Carpenter ‘The Fog’ from their 17th studio album A Eulogy for the Dammed.
But creative lighting aside, there’s no frills and no pretence to Orange Goblin just the mammoth riffs from Joe Hoare, the driving force of Chris Turner on drums and Martyn Millard on bass; who can flip the pace with a bang of the head, add that to the feral roar from Ben Ward, make this one of the best metal bands I have seen in a long time.
We may have waited 5 years for this new material, but it was certainly worth it.
Following the gig I left and sat in a quiet room, until the tinnitus subsided.
Words by Carolyn Davis”
ORANGE GOBLIN/CHURCH OF MISERY/GRIFTER/DOPEFIGHT REVIEW FROM BRISTOL!!!
Here’s a review of the Fleece gig from the Orange Goblin tour from The Venue
Fleece, Bristol (Sun 8 Apr)
It’s Easter Sunday and a sweaty, sold-out Fleece is worshipping Sabbath. Rather too literally in the case of the pleasingly named Dopefight, who play a song that sounds suspiciously like ‘Sweet Leaf’ in a different key. Mind you, this power trio certainly serve up the riffs and make the most of their 30-minute set. One suspects this is the maximum they can survive with a reviving puff on the bong.
Pleasant surprise of the night is Plymouth’s jolly, cider-swilling Grifter, fronted by a portly chap who resembles Jack Black’s older, hairier brother. They work hard to fit into the stoner vibe of the evening, but their heart’s really in classic rock and you can’t help but feel that they really want to let rip and, well, boogie. Witty songs and banter too. “This a fictitious account of a bad encounter with a lady. It’s called ‘Bucktooth Woman’.” Marvellous.
This time last year, Japanese doomsters Church Of Misery easily blew away dull headliners Eyehategod. They face a tougher challenge tonight, but if anything they’ve got even better. The Miseries’ schtick is to perform songs exclusively about serial killers in the style of very early Sabbath, generally with slow, psychedelic intros followed by monolithic riffing. Vocalist Hideki Kukasawa also wrangles sounds from a synthesiser of the variety not heard since Eno was in Roxy Music, Dik Mik was in Hawkwind and the BBC Radiophonic Workshop did the audio effects for ‘Doctor Who’. Mercifully, they remain below the hipster radar, or the place would be full of goatee-stroking tosspots clutching dog-eared copies of Julian Cope’s ‘Japrocksampler’. The metal audience loves ‘em, and rightly so. Best gurning of the evening too.
When Orange Goblin first played the Fleece, they supported Queens of the Stone Age. Don’t even try to pretend you were there, because the place was only half full. Since then, the road-hardened quartet have gone on to stake their claim to the ‘people’s band’ mantle, gradually building a rabid audience. They’re super-tight, with a great guitarist in Joe Hoare. Objectively, the weak link here is hulking Ben Ward’s one-dimensionally gruff vocals. But as he supplies 90% of the band’s personality, they’d be lost without him. New album ‘A Eulogy for the Damned’ is their best yet, largely because, by their own admission, the Goblins actually put the work in this time. So we get plenty of songs from that, including the splendid ‘Acid Trial’ (which is “about taking as much acid as physically possible”) and the epic ‘Death of Aquarius’, alongside old crowd favourites like the neo-psychedelic ‘Time Travelling Blues’ and Motorhead-esque ‘Some You Win, Some You Lose’. And how could anyone dislike a band who play a song inspired by John Carpenter’s ‘The Fog’? (Robin Askew)”
SLEEPING SHAMAN INTERVIEW!!!
Almost forgot about this. Here’s an audio interview Ollie did with Mark from the Sleeping Shaman back in January that has now seen the light of day. It makes for fun listening.
ALL ABOUT THE ROCK REVIEW OF THE MANCHESTER SHOW!!!
Here is a killer review of the Orange Goblin show at Manchester’s Sound Control.
“Future Noise Presents: Bastard Of The Skies, Jucifer, GRIFTER and Orange Goblin @ Soundcontrol
Wednesday 11th April 2012 at Sound Control, Manchester.
Live Review by Chris Key
A truly impressive set of bands was due to lineup at Sound Control, Manchester and us guys at AATR were positively salivating at the prospect of a serious sludge metal and classic metal fest! Craig our resident interviewer was on his way down to the venue in anticipation of meeting the some of the nights mighty metal heroes to be, the videos of which can be seen here!!
Dave of Future-Sound let Craig and Andy in for the first round of interviews, Andy soon set up shop in the basement (a cold one may i add!) and we welcomed Bastard Of The Skies shortly followed by Gazelle Amber Valentine from Jucifer. Once the equipment and lighting was in place Craig went straight to business. A short time later Ant then interviewed Grifter & three members of Orange Goblin as the domineering front man was negotiating with some of the establishments toilet facilities. Photos and a handful of questions with each band were soon over and then it was back to HQ for refreshments prior to doors opening.
The night started out like all good nights, a quick trip to the place that is fast becoming the AATR office, The Salisbury rock pub, Manchester.
After we sunk a few pints of the golden nectar!! After the usual “what time is it?” “crap!! Down the lager” scenario, we hot footed it to Sound Control to get in prime position for what was due to be a night of musical treats, with varying degrees of influences and styles thrown into the metal melting pot!!
So for the curious of you out there, a little bit of background on the bands on the setlist.
Bastard Of The Skies: “Hailing from Blackburn, Lancashire, Bastard Of The Skies formed at the beginning of 2006 to play heavy, loud sludge rock.
Since then the band have bludgeoned audiences across the UK along with bands such as Baroness, Kylesa, Today Is The Day, Jucifer, Black Sun, Truckfighters, The Freezing Fog, Volition, Bersekowitz, Apes Fight Back, Nightmare Visions, They Are Cowards, White Fang, Sonic Lord, The Gods Of Hellfire, Larkin, The Sontanan Experiment, Grimpen Mire, Alunah and many more.”
Jucifer: “is a two piece sludge metal band signed to Relapse Records. The band’s members include Gazelle Amber Valentine on lead guitar and vocals, and her husband Edgar Livengood on drums. They travel in an RV and are “nomadic in nature”, preferring to tour constantly, living in their tour vehicle, rather than following the normal practice of album release/tour/time at home. Jucifer is notable for the extreme volume at which they perform, and the gigantic wall of amplification used for Valentine’s guitar, as well as the dichotomy that has existed between much of the recorded material and their live shows.”
Grifter: “Formed in 2003 Grifter have been tearing up the asphalt round Britain and playing kick ass gig all over this sceptered isle.” Simple as that really!!
and… Orange Goblin: “Inspired by the gods of hard rock, heavy metal, punk rock and underground extremity, from Sabbath, Motörhead and Thin Lizzy through to Celtic Frost, Danzig and Black Flag, Orange Goblin were initially seen as major contenders amid the mid-90s stoner rock explosion, but it soon became apparent that this band had much more up their collective wizard’s sleeve than red-eyed boogie and flapping flares.”
Now we’ve done the public service bit, let’s get back to reminiscing about the gig! The crowd was filling up, in this intimate, clean and super cool venue, filling up a lot quicker than gigs of this size would ordinarily, there was a buzz!! First on would be Blackburn lads (& lady) Bastard Of The Skies. Describing their music as like “A soundtrack to drowning in your own s**te” the guys went hell for leather delivering some uncompromising hard-hitting sludge-metal. The band made an instant connection with the crowd and belied their position as fourth on the lineup. A set that was full of aggression and constant energy and attack on the guitar, when the band loped off the stage I was left wanting to explore all of their material.
Next up was Jucifer. Jucifer have very much defined the sludge-metal genre. With a very unique selling point and dynamic within the band, they are a fearsome husband and wife metal combo of epic proportions! With a frontwoman with one of the best names in metal Gazelle Amber Valentine the scene was set for an intriguing set. Gazelle has a kind of devilish good looks and drummer Edgar Livengood is a hairy animal thrashing away manically on the drums. The set was quite progressive in its nature with one sludge-metal dirge melting into the next. The fantastic rock poses struck by Gazelle drew constant attention making for a fantastic spectacle. They also received good support from the crowd who seemed more than happy to join them as they embarked on some lengthy sludge-metal tracks.
After hearing great things about Plymouth based rockers Grifter and having a massive laugh with the guys backstage, we were right behind the guys with their high energy classic, balls out rock and roll sounds. Bouncing onto the stage, Grifter were greeted like kings and immediately set the crowd alight with gorgeous guitar licks and riffs with a stomping bluesy rocky feel!! The special thing about Grifter is they have the talent and sound to make everyone in the room feel instantly amazing and WISH they could be that rock star!! Thoroughly looking forward to getting our hands on some full length kick ass album material really soon.
After Grifter had positively ripped up the stage it was up to Orange Goblin to literally dismantle the place with their patented Stoner Metal.
Having toured around the world and support absolutely massive names on the metal scene such as Down and Queens Of The Stone Age these guys were bound to be pros. They took to the stage, instantly owning the crowd. Lead singer and man mountain Ben Ward was an absolute party animal and made sure he connected with the crowd in one way or another. Whether it was his bear-like arms reaching out to embrace the now frenzied crowd, or taking a swig of much needed water and spraying it around, he interacted! The riffs were absolutely insanely brilliantly. Guitarist Joe Hoare was as Ben described “A riff machine.” He started with a killer riff that hooked you, then proceeded to show you he had about 10 different variations of this riff, all awesome, all memorable, meaty and metal as f**k.
The night was a showcase of all things good about independant gig nights, a truly amazing and interesting collection of rockers who were all as cool as you like and all executed with the minimal of fuss, it was just all about the music. The metal was king and that is after all, what really matters!!
8 out of 10″
DESERTFEST REVIEW FROM THE OBELISK!!!
Big thanks to JJ from the Obelisk for his kind words about our Desertfest appearance.
“Though by the time Grifter were getting ready to roll, I was tired and I could feel myself being tired. For a soundcheck, the three-piece jammed out a bouncy, low-key riff — it reminded me of something Asteroid might have extended for another six or seven minutes the night before in the same room — and inadvertently hooked the crowd, so that when they stopped, the room erupted in cheers. It was awesome, though kind of a bummer they didn’t just pick up from there and keep going. There were still a couple minutes before their set actually began, but when it did, it was worth the wait. Like last year’s Ripple Music self-titled full-length (review here), the live show showed them as a no bullshit heavy classic rock band. They played a couple older songs off their first EPs, which were well received, and were a cool way to finish up the night. I think a lot of people had gone off to the pub or decided to call it quits on the evening, but those who stayed for Grifter were definitely rewarded for the effort. I did, anyhow. Their set was like the destination I’d been running to all day, and I suppose it was. I’ll be honest: I didn’t make it through the whole thing, with time wearing on and knowing this was going to be the giant slab of probably typo-laden copy it has turned into. As as been the case many times so far this weekend, though, I was glad I saw what I did.”
ORANGE GOBLIN TOUR!!!
Well, the Orange Goblin tour is now done and dusted and was an incredible experience all round. We kicked off headlining the Black Heart stage at Desertfest on the Saturday night to a packed room of people all up for having a good time and finished the following Saturday playing in Oxford to a packed room of people all having a good time!!!
We are all blown away by the incredible repsonses we’ve had from the crowd every night and have met some lovely people along the way…not to mention receiving offers of gigs left right and centre. The rest of the year could be busy for Grifter!!! There are some nice things in the pipeline as a result of all of this so watch this space!!!
We want to say a huge thanks to Orange Goblin…Ben, Joe, Martyn and Chris for taking us out, showing us a lot of respect, kindness and generosity as well as kicking our arses every night with incredible sets…it’s been a lesson for us!!! Also a massive thanks to the crew, Big Al, Griz and Steve for their awesome help and friendship through the week.
We still have CDs and shirts available from our web store so head over for a quick look