Last week, the popular Manchester venue, Rebellion, hosted one of the most admired names in extreme metal, NAPALM DEATH. Supported by the grind-core super group, LOCK UP as well as America’s thrash masters, POWER TRIP and Mexico’s bandana-wearing beasts, BRUJERIA, Rebellion provided Manchester with a tight packed, sold out show of hardcore greatness.
First band opening on the night was grind-core, side-project/super group, LOCK UP. The band are best known for their harsh, fast sound and captivating yet rare live performances. Promoting their new album release, Demonization, LOCK UP subjected the northern crowd to an array of blast beats, chunky riffs, demonic, harsh vocals as well as an interactive stage presence. BRUTAL TRUTH member, Kevin Sharp joined LOCK UP as a vocalist, and Sharp’s vocals proved nothing but fierce during last week’s gig. Guitarist and founder of the Chilean death metal band, PENTAGRAM, Anton Reisenegger brought a newer, more intense sound to LOCK UP, complimented by Shane Embury and his admirable bass style. The band were also joined by Nicholas Barker, best known as the drummer CRADLE OF FILTH, who seems well adapted to the band’s death-grind style.
Rising artists, POWER TRIP made an appearance in the UK for this year’s NAPALM DEATH tour. Although seemingly not as extreme as the other bands on the bill, POWER TRIP definitely gave a performance to remember. Whilst sadly being one of the lesser known bands on the scene, the band are definitely one of the most deserving of praise. By the time of their entrance, Rebellion had begun to pack up full of fans awaiting the upcoming performances of BRUJERIA and NAPALM DEATH but were pleasantly surprised to witness the energy and enthusiasm of the Texas thrashers, encouraging crowd involvement and mosh pits. Whether crowd members were stage diving, pitting or stood appreciating the band, it was obvious that POWER TRIP were greatly appreciated by the Mancunian crowd.
Providing as main support, BRUJERIA took the stage. Expectations were set high for the theatrical Mexicans, considering their popularity and tight studio sound. Whilst bass performance was satisfactory, the vocals were slightly off. Despite being a pair, the performance from the vocal duo was somewhat sloppy and uninteresting. However, over time, the performance from BRUJERIA seemed to become progressively more enjoyable. Especially with Shane Embury featuring on bass, again the band managed to push back. With their unique stage personalities, wearing balaclavas, bandannas and masks for disguise, immersing themselves in their stage personas and chanting anti-Trump propaganda, the band gave an overall interesting performance.
Appearing at the late time of 10pm, long anticipated, NAPALM DEATH finally made an appearance. Starting with the opening track on their latest album Apex Predator – Easy Meat, the band’s excitement was evidently reciprocated by the crowd, especially upon the appearance of vocalist, Barney Greenway. The band managed to perform a various amount of songs from a number of different records (given their lengthy discography), even tracks that featured on their debut album, Scum. With sharp guitar sounds from Mitch Harris, the tracks were revived with a resilient energy that was most certainly appreciated by the audience. Like BRUJERIA, NAPALM DEATH used their stage to promote a political message. Barney touched upon the issue of refugees as well as his dislike for the Tories. Typically though, the band did not disappoint, exerting an angry enthusiasm and powerful performance, as is always expected of NAPALM DEATH.
Check out our photo gallery from the night’s action in Manchester from Sabrina Ramdoyal Photography here: