Friday, 28 March 2014

Metal 2 The Masses 2014: Heat 2

My last review ended speaking about people outside a venue and not going in to watch the bands even though it’s free entry and if that’s bad enough they don’t even use the bar etc.
That may have upset a few people so I’m probably going to upset a few more with this review.

Metal 2 The Masses is another free event organised by The Ivy with Bloodstock Open Air and here is an exact copy of what I posted on the Facebook event page for all those attending.

"To all attending M2TM at The Ivy.
This is a great event where you get to vote for the best band of the evening.
Whilst many will be going to see their mates play and vote for them please take a moment to think.
Was another band that played better than your mates?
Whilst you would love to see your mates play Bloodstock was that other band better than your mates?
Think about the quality of the songs, the stage presence, crowd interaction.
You get the thing.
Basically, use your vote wisely.
Thanks for reading and let's get THE BEST OF THE BEST to Bloodstock."

 I think that was a very fair and honest comment with quite a lot of people clicking the ‘Like’ button.

What’s that got to do with people not watching bands? I hear you ask.

Here goes.

There were four bands playing tonight.

Whilst Pressurehead were playing I think there was about ten, maybe less, people watching. I took a quick look outside and there was more than ten people.

The same with Word Of Nod but this time a few more outside.

Near Ruin had a few more people watching them. I think they managed to get a few mates to come along which is great.

When Los Alcatraz played the majority of people that were outside were now inside watching them. This is great too that they brought a crowd with the but I refer you to my Facebook entry which is exactly what I am talking about.

If they had watched the other bands they may have discovered another band that took their breath away.

I know I did that night.

Rant over and if I haven’t upset you too much I’ll crack on with the review!

Pressurehead come from Gravesend and I’ve never heard of them before which is somewhat strange as I have been going to The Red Lion since 1985.
They start their set with a Pearl Jam sounding song which was really cool and clearly showed where their influences lie but this is M2TM and I’m looking for originality in M2TM.
They continue with some blinding songs, some did and some didn’t sound like Pearl Jam, and they certainly raised my eyebrows and got a smile from me especially seeing them enjoying themselves and having fun.
I especially like the fun filled “Living Dead Cock”. Cracking!
For the first band of the evening and being this good the other bands had better be bloody good if they’re going to get my vote.

Click Here For More Photos Of Pressurehead

Playing next is another band I’ve not heard of before.
Coming from the Kent / Sussex border it’s Word Of Nod.
It’s difficult to describe a genre for them if, in fact, they even have one.
Heavy Rock? Alternative Rock / Metal? Indie? Who knows?
But what I do know is that they were pretty damn fine and completely different from any other band I’ve seen enter M2TM before.
And What's not to like about a song called “Starving To Death In The Belly Of A Whale”?

Click Here For More Photos Of Word Of Nod

I saw Near Ruin quite some time ago in Chatham when I thought they were okay and got a thumb up from me.
Unfortunately tonight they don’t do much for me.
They don’t really appear to have progressed any since I last saw them. (See my comment about Vulgate in Heat 1.)
They brought their own light show which is something different and gets a bonus point from me but in general the songs lacked originality for a band that have their sights set for Bloodstock.
However I was impressed with the guitarist / keyboardist and the way he switches between them during songs.
A lot of people say that keyboards don’t belong in Metal but the way Near Ruin have added them I kinda like it.
A good show by Near Ruin but I’d like them to come up with something a little more original for next year if they enter.

Click Here For More Photos Of Near Ruin

The final band tonight is Los Alcatraz.
I’d heard of them but not seen them before.
Those that know me will know that I don’t like to judge a book by the cover but when Los Alcatraz took to the stage and their mates came to the front it became apparent to me that they were a hardcore band.
And those of you that know me will also know that I quite like hardcore and have done since the early days and I especially like local hardcore monsters Pay No Respect but there was something that I didn’t quite get about Los Alcatraz.
I don’t know what but I just can’t put my finger on it.
I know hardcore is a sub genre of Metal and a lot of people will say that if it wasn’t for hardcore there would be no thrash metal but M2TM does stand for Metal 2 The Masses, not Hardcore 2 The Masses and I really wanted to see a Metal band. Or at least Rock.
And I have to ask, “What’s with this two step thing?”

Click Here For More Photos Of Los Alcatraz

The winner of tonights heat was Word Of Nod. And deservedly so. They are different, whacky, and, well, bloody good.
And well done to Pressurehead for making the semi-final.
I couldn't have agreed more with the outcome.

Don't forget to check out and like my Facebook page and subscribe to my YouTube channel where you can see the videos of this gig.
Support your scene by going to local gigs and buying merch.
Remember, They're your bands.

Photos used with kind permission from Nathan Hammond Photography.

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