Tag: Orange Goblin
ORANGE GOBLIN/GRIFTER LIVE REVIEW FROM SWANSEA!!!
As the saying goes, better late than never. This review of our show supporting Orange Goblin at The Garage in Swansea back in April has just surfaced…and rather nice it is too!!!
“So here we are again at The Garage, Swansea to watch another big name act take the stage, thanks to the people at South Wales Heavy Metal Community.
First to take to the stage are Pembrokeshire boys Hate Gauge, who welcome a new drummer in the shape of Richie. Yet even with the new drummer in tow they never seem to miss a beat. Mixing songs from both their albums Another Day in Hell and Hope, Envy, Love and Lies. A strong ballistic missile of a set, and as always a 110% commitment and energy from the hate gauge boys. If anything their set was over too quickly.
Next to take the stage were Swansea’s own power trio Prosperina,who combine a classic rock style with modern influences. The set is a feast of musical influences as their powerful anthems are mixed with doom and sprinkled with pop, it really is a kaleidoscope of sounds. Helped in no small part by each individual member’s unique craftsmanship. Gethin woolcock’s vocal gymnastics are amazing to behold, while his dynamics on guitar are masterful. Owen Street’s Control of the low end on bass is controlled and skilful, while Yotin Walsh is the topless wild man on Drum’s providing the bands beat.
Next up to take the stage are Grifter. Who are a mix of classic balls to the wall rock, that just smashes you in the face from the very 1st note to the last note. Ollie Stygall has a the look of a giant grizzly and vocals to match. Ease my Pain and Alabama Hotpot prove that Grifter are good old fashion rock and also accomplished musicians. It was plan to see from the crowd’s reaction that Grifter know how to play a crowd.
Finally it’s time for the band everyone has been waiting for Orange Goblin. From the minute charismatic frontman Ben Ward hits the stage the crowd go wild as Ben controls the crowd like some giant puppet master. Frontman Ben Ward simply dominated the stage last night, with his band producing a master class in heads-down, hard rock that had everyone on their feet. Ben Wards forceful growl and crisp vocals is supported by immense riffs from Joe Hoare, and the powerful force of Chris Turner on drums and Martyn Millard on bass. The Fog based on John Carpenter’s film of the same name is a great track. But my favourite was watching the crowd sing along “We are metal, we’re the outcasts and we always will be!” from Time Travelling Blues. Orange Goblin’s reputation as one of the UK’s best live acts is never in doubt if tonight is anything to go by.
Words and photos by Frank Hinley”
Cheers to Frank Hinley for this
NEW INTERVIEW IN SLUDGELORD!!!
Ollie recently did an interview for the very fine Sludgelord webzine. Big thanks to Steve Howe for doing this and to Lee at The Sleeping Shaman for hooking us up.
“Today on Sludgelord I am interviewing Ollie (Vocalist and Guitarist) from Grifter. The awesome Blues Rock/Stoner Rock Combo who have gained a whole load of praise for their superb S/T début album which I reviewed earlier this year.
Q1 – For People not in the know – Can you tell them how the band came about, When you formed etc…
Ah, this tale goes back to the mists of time. We formed in September/October 2003 in our original home town of Plymouth. Phil (bass), Foz (drums) and our original singer Nev were in a band called 16 Stone Mullet and I was in a band called Conrad. I was sick of my band and their guitarist was going to university so we hooked up and started jamming. By December we had a set together so we played a gig…then Nev walked off stage and left the band right there and then. Exactly one month later we were back at the same venue as a three piece with my good self taking over the vocal spot…and that’s the way it’s been ever since.
Q2 – How would yourselves describe your sound.
We always get called stoner/classic/blues rock or whatever…and that’s fine if it gives people something to hang on to as a description. But I think Phil summed it up best when he was talking to someone at a gig and they asked him what sort of music we play and he just replied Rock And Roll. That really sums it up but if I wanted to flesh it out a bit for people so they don’t go away expecting us to sound like Elvis I’d say dirty heavy rock and roll.
Q3 – Which bands influence you on your music.
I think like most bands we have direct and indirect influences. The direct influences would be bands like Black Sabbath, ZZ Top, Led Zeppelin, AC/DC, Motorhead, Clutch, Aerosmith, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Mountain…etc but between us we have a huge range of music tastes from 90’s grunge to reggae and ska to punk to NWOBHM to blues to thrash to hip hop to 60’s soul and all of them have little creeping influences on what we do even if they may not be entirely obvious. It may be something as small as suggesting a bass line that draws from reggae even if the guitars are heavy and stuff like that.
Q4 – Is the band a full time project or do you have full time jobs to contend with.
I’d say it’s a bit of both really. We all have full time jobs…I work for an energy company, Phil works for a metalwork design company and Foz is in construction. On the other hand the band is pretty much at the forefront of our minds most of the time and we’re always thinking about some aspect of it whether it’s the music, promotion, business…etc. Fortunately the band pretty much pays for itself most of the time and any money the band makes goes straight back into the band.
Q5 – What is the song-writing process like in the band. Is it a whole band collective or individuals that write the music.
The song writing process is pretty much as it comes. Sometime songs just come out of jamming or sometimes Phil or I will come in with a riff…Phil tends to come in with a few riffs that work together in a sequence but I’m more likely to come in with a verse and chorus complete with vocals. We then get together and start to put flesh on the bones. Foz will find the groove, things will get twisted around a bit, the groove will dictate maybe what sort of middle section we’re going to use and it all gets built up from there. It’s very rare that anyone will come in with a whole complete song as we’re of the mind that one person’s ideas aren’t necessarily the best all the time and it’s everyone’s input into a song that makes it what it is. Even if someone does come in with a whole song it usually gets ripped apart and put back together again.
Q6 – You have received a whole load of great praise for your excellent début album. That most of took you by surprise. Are you happy with the response you have got so far.
The response to the album completely blew us away. Out of all the reviews we’ve had, which I think is getting on for about 40, we’ve had only 2 more negative reviews, maybe a couple that were a bit non committal and the rest have raved about it which is incredible. What really amazed us is when the end of year best of lists started to appear on various websites and we were on a whole bunch of them like The Obelisk, The Soda Shop, Heavy Planet, Chybucca Sounds…etc. We totally didn’t expect that and it’s quite humbling really to think that three scruffy buggers from the west country can plug away in quiet oblivion and turn out a bunch of songs that people rate as one of the best albums of last year.
Q7 – Your début album was released by the excellent label Ripple Music. How did you hook up with those guys. Great Label and run by a bunch of cool guys.
Ripple is an awesome label and we hooked up with them really at the start of their journey. They hadn’t even released an album when they asked us to work with them so we’ve been growing together. Basically they ran a review site first The Ripple Effect, and I sent them a copy of our previous EP for review. I’m not even sure at that point I was aware they were doing a label. Anyway, they loved the EP, gave it a rave review and then started to ask how we were fixed label wise and would we be interested in being part of a vinyl compilation they were thinking of putting together with Stone Axe, Sun Gods In Exile and Mighty High as all 4 bands had some links by playing together or releasing split vinyls…etc.
Q8 – What has been the reception like to your live gigs. Has it all been good responses. Any major live highlights so far. (I saw you guys perform an excellent performance when supporting Orange Goblin earlier this year).
At the risk of sounding big headed…and I really don’t mean to…the response to our live shows is always pretty amazing. Even if we play to crowds who don’t really know who we are we always seem to win them round and get a great reaction. I’m not sure why this is. Maybe it’s because we actually engage with the crowd and try to get some sort of rapport going with them rather than staring at our feet plus, playing the style of music we play, it makes us want to move and we’re passionate about it and I think that sheer enjoyment comes across to an audience.
Gig highlights? There have been loads. Obviously the Orange Goblin tour was incredible, we had a total blast and were really taken aback at how good the reactions were every night…people chanting the band’s name…etc. Headlining the Black Heart stage at Desertfest was also a killer gig as was playing the Freak Valley open air festival in Germany. In 9 years worth of playing gigs we’ve been lucky enough to play with some incredible bands and play some killer shows.
Q9 – Do you get many gigs in your home. Or do you have to travel around a lot.
We could get a lot more gigs at home if we wanted but we prefer to spread them out so we don’t burn out the local crowd. We’d rather make the hometown gigs a bit more special and get other quality bands on than just do everything that’s going. It is difficult there though as venues have taken a hammering and so many have disappeared but a few people are still flying the flag and keeping it alive. Most of our gigs are further afield. We prefer to do that as it’s more fun for us to get in the van, have a road trip and get to play to new crowds and meet different people/bands.
Q10 – Does your family and friends support your band.
Our families are tremendously supportive. Phil and I are both married with kids and the band sometimes takes us away from them but they put up with it all and are very proud of what we do. Apparently I’m some kind of hero at my eldest daughter’s school!!!
Q11 – What is your opinion of the current state of the UK Sludge/Stoner Metal scene. Great bands coming through. Not enough cool venues across the UK to put them on.
There are some amazing bands who are working very hard to put out quality releases and gig as much as possible and keep the scene afloat. Venue/promoter wise it’s a lot harder but there are some that keep things going and they do seem to be able to put on good gigs and get good turnouts so there is definitely a scene there to build upon. It helps when magazines like Metal Hammer devote an entire cover mounted CD to up and coming UK bands of this genre as they did recently as it shows that people are taking notice. It would be great of there were more venues and promoters who could pay the bands for the travel…etc but I’m hoping it’ll pick up slowly.
Q12 – What are your fave bands around at the moment. Any new ones you can recommend for ourselves to check out.
Of the UK bands we have some amazing talent here. Mother Corona from Oxford have released an amazing album and the new Alunah album is incredible. General are band from Birmingham who’s new album has just come out on Catacomb Records and is a real killer , they have an awesome vocalist. Other ones to watch are Desert Storm from Oxford, Steak from London, Undersmile from Oxford, Smoke Pilot (formerly Medamaki) from Evesham, Trippy Wicked and the Cosmic Children of the Knight and Stubb from St Albans, XII Boar from Aldershot, Admiral Sir Cloudesley Shovell from Hastings…the list goes on.
On an international scale Ape Machine from the States are incredible, they have 2 self released albums out and are hooking up with someone very cool for the next album. We’re hoping to get them over to tour next year. Also The Lord Fowl album on Small Stone is a killer. I also have to give mention to our label mates Stone Axe, Mos Generator and Mighty High from across the pond for all releasing amazing stuff and our buddies in Sun Gods In Exile. Also check out Doctor Cyclops from Italy who have a new album out now on World In Sound…we toured with them in Europe and they totally rule. Finally check out Bushfire from Germany who have a killer sound and amazing front man.
Q13 – What are the most and least rewarding aspects of participating with the band.
The most rewarding are things like writing a killer song in practice and the buzz that we get from that, playing awesome gigs to amazing crowds and meeting new friends, getting amazing feedback for our album…etc. The downside is having to deal with all the business stuff and stressing about being able to afford to do stuff…we’d like to do a video but that costs, we have a new album to record and that costs…etc. Trying to get gigs that will at least cover petrol costs. It would be great to have someone on board who could deal with all that stuff for us so we can concentrate on the music as the bigger the band gets the more that side of things takes over. We’re getting there though, we’re building a good team.
Q14 – What is your view of bands and blogs giving away music for free. Lot of bands and people have different perspectives.
This is a tough one. I’m guilty of downloading stuff myself …though it tends to be older obscure hard to find stuff or stuff I already have on vinyl though I have grabbed downloads of other stuff to check out. It is certainly one way of spreading music far and wide and getting bands heard and I don’t think any band will turn their noses up at an increased fan base…it’s particularly rewarding when you get positive feedback from people about your stuff. On the other hand, being in a band is a huge financial commitment, similarly running a label, and bands need to make a return on their investment into their music to be able to continue doing it and illegal downloading does draw income away from the bands and labels so people downloading everything are running the risk of killing the industry.
Q15 – What advice or words of wisdom would you give to upcoming bands and musicians who are about to start a Sludge/Doom/Stoner Rock Band.
Make sure you have decent gear so you can get a decent sound from the off…stop using Matamps and Big Muff pedals, everyone has that sound now, you need to stand out. Also, don’t set out trying to be a stoner/doom/sludge band. Listen to a range of stuff and play what feels right to you not what you think will fit into a scene…don’t just copy your heroes as you won’t stand out from the pack and people like sincerity and a touch of originality. If you write a riff that sound like a dead ringer for Fu Manchu or whoever then bin it or rework it into something of your own. It’s a hugely over populated market and you need something to stand out…don’t forget all modern rock music springs from the blues, go back and listen to the source.
Q16 – Finally what are the future plans for the band. Do you have more tours planned or new releases we should be aware of.
We’re constantly working. At them moment we’re writing songs for album number two, we have nearly 7 songs in the bag now and we’ll look to maybe get another 3-4 written before we plan to head in and record. We’ve road tested some of the songs and the response to them has been amazing so we’re confident the album will be pretty strong. Ripple want to release the album and we have some plans to give it plenty of promo like shooting a video…etc Also Ripple have grown hugely as a label since the first one and will be able to make a bigger splash when this one drops.
Well guys thanks for answering these questions. All the best from all of us at Sludgelord.
NICE REVIEW FROM OXFORD ORANGE GOBLIN GIG!!!
Here’s a pretty cool review of the Oxford show on the recent Orange Goblin tour. Cheers to Tom for the kind words
“Last time Buried in Smoke and Pure Concentrated Evil brought Orange Goblin to Oxford it was in the grand and spacious expanses of the Regal, a venue that was perhaps too large to ever fill with Orange Goblin fans, especially in Oxford. This time, however, the promoters brought the vintage stoner rockers to the upstairs room of the O2 Academy, a venue far better suited to the band’s fan-base and brand of sweaty rock and/or roll.
The venue was respectably – if sparsely – populated when opening act Komrad took to the stage, but more and more people piled in throughout the course of their set. Pound for pound, Komrad had more musical ideas going on than all of the other bands combined – often in the space of one song. Opening track ‘Robotmen’, for example, sounds like the soundtrack to a broken circuit and could probably be compartmentalised into an EPs worth of material. Watching guitarists Jimmy Hetherington and Russ Blaine shimmy up and down their respective fretboards so nonchalantly is quite disconcerting and I come away with something akin to penis envy. The rhythm section of drummer James Currie and bassist Dave Cranwell lock into some incredibly shifty, tumultuous grooves while James Greene half screams, half croons about parking restrictions in seaside towns and various other gripes. It’s hard to describe what Komrad do really – they’re kind of like Captain Beefheart’s Magic Band meets Faith No More. ‘Cowley Necktie’, their perennial set-closer and the band’s twisted ode to Cowley Road, is the song that finds the band at their most triumphant, head-nodding, crowd-pleasing best. An odd but excellent start to the night.
Oxford’s crowning stoner rock titans Desert Storm waste no time kicking into some mighty sand-swept grooves with frontman Matt Ryan temporarily transposed into the form of a whiskey-soaked and highly volatile Southern deviant. ‘Ol’ Town’, ‘Cosmic Drips’ and ‘Astral Planes’ all contain riffs that are pretty much too good to be true, kicking up almighty dust clouds along the imagined dirt-roads that the band are traversing. Sure there are occasional hints of Clutch, Kyuss, Sleep and Pantera throughout their set but one of Desert Storm’s strengths is being able to balance their influences with their own take on the genre, all with a sly sense of not taking themselves too seriously. They nod in unison, Chris Benoist rocks out with his legs spread dangerously far apart and Matt Ryan riles the crowd into a beer and Orange Goblin sized frenzy. It’s fair to say that the Oxford lot have done themselves proud tonight and Desert Storm prove that no-one in Oxford cuts a groove quite like these guys.
Next up are Orange Goblin’s touring mates, Plymouth’s good-time party band Grifter. One of Grifter’s biggest selling-points is frontman Ollie Styall who is as good an entertainer as you could ask for, the perfect hype man to get the crowd ready for Orange Goblin. In between songs about Guinness, buck-toothed women and “rock n’ roll” Stygall talks about Guinness, buck-toothed women and rock n’ roll, and wins the ever-cynical Oxford crowd over – no mean feat. Musically the band touch base with AC/DC, early Slade, Motorhead, even Spinal Tap on a few occasions (that’s no insult, Spinal Tap fucking rule) and even knock out a damn fine cover of ‘Fairies Wear Boots’ by Black Sabbath. The guys then reveal that one of their songs, ‘Sweat Like Horses’, is going to be used in the new series of Dog: Bounty Hunter. You get the picture – these guys aren’t out to change the world, they’re just making good ol’ fashioned rock n’ roll and the now-packed O2 Academy lap it up.
Orange Goblin. Got to be honest, not a massive fan – some of their stuff I can listen to, some of their stuff I tend to tune-out for. Last time they played in Oxford at the Regal I thought they were abysmal and over-hyped beyond belief. Tonight, in the smaller, cosier confines of the O2 they actually came across far better in contrast. Frontman/giant Ben Ward spends the first five to ten minutes of their set stomping around the stage, drinking beer, pushing the microphone stand out into the crowd and shaking his beefy arms in the air (presumably to appease/arouse the gods of rock or something) before the band cut into a set heavily composed of the new album with a handful of oldies thrown-in for, y’know, the oldies in attendance. The new album, apparently something of a return to form for the band after a few misses, is best represented by ‘Red Tide Rising’, a song designed to get the crowd moving. But it’s one the evening’s mellower moments that really wins me over – ‘Time Travelling Blues’, one of the band’s most beloved songs, a sort of homage to the lazy, nostalgic rock n’ roll of Lynyrd Skynyrd et al. But if the best that be said about your set is that it’s highly derivative or ‘alright’ then something is clearly off. The musicianship throughout is excellent but the content is too safe, too stale and too predictable to warrant the heroic reception these guys receive.
By Tom McKibbin”
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)”
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″
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
DESERTFEST LINE-UP DETAILS ANNOUNCED
The line-up details for Desertfest have now been announced. For those of you that live under a rock and don’t know, Desertfest is a new festival organised by the guys at Desertscene Rock that will run for three days from April 6th to the 8th over the Easter weekend in Camden. The festival, which looks set to be the UK equivalent of Roadburn with a quality line-up to match, or maybe even exceed its Dutch cousin, occupies three venues on each day; the larger Underworld, the slightly smaller Purple Turtle and the slightly smaller again Black Heart. All three venues are within walking distance of each other…with the Black Heart and the Underworld within spitting distance.
The weekend features a pretty stunning array of bands from across the stoner/doom/psych/sludge/classic rock spectrums including Orange Goblin, Corrosion Of Conformity, Karma To Burn, Church Of Misery, Roadsaw, Black Pyramid, Rotor, Leafhound, Truckfighters, Black Cobra, Zoroaster, Asteroid, Gorilla, Valiant Thorr, Gentlemans Pistols, Orchid, Samsara Blues Experiment, Lord Vicar, Greenleaf and many more…50+ bands over the whole weekend.
We are very pleased, surprised and honoured to announce we will be headlining the Black Heart stage on Saturday 7th April. Timings have been arranged to allow for minimal overlap between bands so Orange Goblin will finish in the Underworld by 10.15 then it’s a short walk to the Black Heart to catch our set then when we’re done it’s a 5 minute walk to the Purple Turtle to catch Slabdragger kick out their sludgey doom.
See you all there!!!
Full line up