Every once in a while here at The Revival we like to put all those big name bands aside and look back at the music’s roots. Whilst we all love to be in a concert hall or arena watching that named band we love with 10,000 people, where are the next group of bands who will fill these venues going to come from? The answer is a simple one, the next generation of arena filling bands are the ones putting in the hard graft right now, working the dark, dingy venues to sometimes sparse crowds. Those young bands are playing night in, night out up and down the country slowly building their fan base and trying to get up on the next rung of the ladder.
In every major town and city around the UK, small independent promoters are putting on these shows, nurturing their local talent, giving young bands that helping hand up.
This evening we are covering one such gig, the Ovation Music Management show at the Slade Rooms in Wolverhampton. Concert hall this not, but breeding ground for future stars it certainly is.
Opening the five band bill are Influens, a band I can honestly say I have never heard of before, even on the local
scene. But as is ever the case with these shows, you will always make a discovery, that band with an abundance of talent that you’ll tell all your mates about the next day. Influens are exactly that, a magnificent sound, similar to Prong in places and Jozsef Szakacs vocals certainly have a hint of Tommy Victor about them. Thrashy guitars with an almost industrial twist pave the way for a fast paced, angst driven set to kick off the evening.
Following on are The Revival favourites SID, who released their debut album last month, a review of which we have up on this very website. The progressive groove metal outfit add more than a small dose of Mastodon’s influence to their sound and song writing. Tracks from the Path of the Don concept album dominate the short set. Tri-vocals from messers Mooney, Corbett and Cross add a depth to the overall delivery that few other bands offer. The only disappointment being the time constraints of the evening resulting in Burbalang being cut from the set list, one of the stand out tracks from their new release.
Disarm Goliath have been doing the rounds on the scene for many years now, and have earned their spot high up tonight’s bill. An out and out heavy metal band they open with a faster thrashy number that borrows a riff or two from Anthrax’s Madhouse. The energy this band exude mesmerises, despite the thrash driven opening track the real sound of his band is your traditional NWOBHM; imagine Saxon crossed with Iron Maiden. Ferocious guitars accompanied by showmanship a plenty is exactly what any gig going fan wants.
Ram arrive in Wolverhampton as part of a full UK tour with headliners Hostile. Hailing from Sweden, RAM formed in the late 90’s born out of a mutual distaste for the heavy metal scene at the time. Having signed for Metal Blade back in 2011 the band have gone from strength to strength but are yet to make that big break through in the UK. This tour is doing wonders for them, their own brand of heavy metal, similar to that of early Judas Priest, goes down incredibly well with the black country crowd.
Warbler Oscar Carlquist clad in leather commands the small stage in the venue, his vocal range outstanding as he hits all those high notes yet in equal measure to the gruff undertones. The powerful performance with dual guitars and the craziest drummer Scandinavia has ever produced deliver a full-on assault to the senses, oral and visual.
After a short break we return to the nights action with headliners Hostile. The local lads done good on a full UK headline tour having just been out supporting thrash titans Megadeth in Moscow. This is a big home coming for them and the fans tonight pack the venue to see them.
Their sound, reminiscent of their heroes Pantera, is pure groove laden heavy metal with a good thrash mix. Jay ever the ultimate front man steers them through their full hour on stage whilst his brother, A.J. shines on guitar with faultless technical solos in between his thunderous riffs. The sheer brutality of songs like Lamb to the Slaughter and the self titled Hostile are wondrous with limbs flailing in the pit from the assembled masses. From start the finish the five piece show they really are suited to the headline slot and this UK tour will do wonders for them and their burgeoning careers.