The last live show I attended was on February 22nd, 2020 watching Opeth at the Apollo Theater in New York City. It was a magical night, but little did I know that was going to be the last live music I was going to be watching perform in a year. I miss live shows, as I’m sure every single one of you does as well and I was particularly reminded of this since the beginning of last week. Having said that, when The Ocean Collective announced that they were going to play a live stream show of their amazing album Phanerozoic I: Palaeozoic (Pelagic Records) in its entirety, I immediately jumped to my feet and said: “I NEED to watch that”, I knew it was going to be magical as everything the German band does.
In a time when the world must take a break from live concerts and events to keep our peers safe, there are few ways for bands to keep their connection with the fans alive. Melodic Death Metal quintet Avatar, however, have found an effective way around that – one in which they not only perform multiple livestreams of full shows but have their fans select the songs they play. Thus, Avatar Ages was born.
Avatar took my live stream “virginity” away in this concert Ages|Madness from their series of Livestream concerts titled Ages, which has been running since January 9th and will end this upcoming weekend on January 30th. The Swedish band demonstrated why they are one of the most popular and entertaining bands in the genre right now by giving a performance that very well is worth the “price of admission” that COVID normalcy has given us for these types of events since we cannot go to live shows for the time being. Avatar was able to set a tone and ambiance like no other with this performance which was concentrated on tracks from the albums Black Waltz (Gain Music Entertainment)and Hail the Apocalypse (eOne Music).
On a chilly New York night, legions of fans gathered under the moonless
sky to witness the return of the British beasts of extermination, Cradle of Filth. They ascended to a sold-out Irving Plaza to witness the destruction during the Cryptoriana – The Second Coming Of Vice tour, which is a continuation of support for their 2017 album, Cryptoriana –The Seductiveness of Decay. Supporting the tour were Hollywood shock rockers, Wednesday 13 and LA’s own Dark Metal carnies, Raven Black. Together, they put on an unforgettable show.
Another early doors gig, as Hoobastank and Buckcherry hit Manchester, with support from Adelita’s Way. A bit warmer than my visit a week or two earlier and time for a chat with joint headliner Hoobastank prior to the gig – with Doug and Dan proving to be excellent company for the almost 30 minutes I end up chatting with them, the results of which will be on an upcoming Ghost Cult Podcast. After the chat, it is back down the stairs to take up what almost feels like my reserved spot at the barrier, ready for some entertainment.Continue reading
Following the previous night’s splendidly named Super Blood Wolf Moon Eclipse, a still virtually full moon hangs in the sky over Birmingham, accompanied by rapidly falling temperatures and icy gusts of snowy wind. So, what better way to keep warm on a wintry January evening than with some werewolf themed German Heavy Metal.Continue reading
After being somewhat spoiled with three support acts the previous night at Skid Row in Manchester, it’s a bump back down to a single support for this evening’s fare, with Canada’s Blood Ceremony touring in support of Uncle Acid and the Deadbeats at Birmingham’s O2 Institute. The room is not quite sold out, though very busy, with the intimate feel of the venue lending itself to a really good atmosphere. After a far too early arrival, allowing unneeded extra time for snow, it was time for some doom and gloom in my ears to warm me from the cold. Continue reading
A four band bill on a cold Tuesday evening seems like the perfect antidote to the winter blues, so with Skid Row bringing the heat… sorry, bringing along H.E.A.T. alongside Vega and Backyard Babies on support on their latest tour, it seemed like the perfect evening. A quick trip across to Manchester later and it was time for the rather early doors. Continue reading
And so, to Architects at Wembley Arena. You start off with one of those angel/devil on your shoulder conversations about how this could be a really great way to spend a Saturday night or, conversely, rather like Roger Murtaugh in Lethal Weapon, you find yourself wondering whether you really are getting too old for this shit; a feeling that seems to continue as you take the tube northbound, past semi-frozen shoppers heading to warm homes and warm food, to the glorified cattle shed that is the SSE Arena, or Wembley Arena, as most of us still know (if not love) it.Continue reading
Putting together a good bill is a difficult task. Sometimes the stars can align, schedules are free and the world gets Trivium with Code Orange, Power Trip and Venom Prison. Other times you get Dizzee Rascal supporting Muse. Yes, that did actually happen. When a band as fluid with genre boundaries as Enter Shikari announces a tour, wild speculation breaks out about who will be joining them, or indeed, why a certain band is on the bill. Tonight is no exception as a varied line up graces the frequently gig-bereft Leicester City.Continue reading