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Soulfly @ Club Academy, Manchester

Photo Credit: Katie Louise Needham
Photo Credit: Katie Louise Needham

WORDS: James Weaver PHOTOS: Katie Louise Needham

Despite the monstrous showers drenching the streets and people of Manchester throughout the day, Club Academy was bursting with people ready to bear witness to a night of metal covering numerous styles and sub-genres.

One of the notable aspects of the bill was the supporting acts all fall under the category of local support, a nice touch from Max Cavalera and co. Opening the proceedings, Cheshire’s THIS IS TURIN embarked on a deathcore assault with massive riffs, breakdowns and a superb display from frontman Darryl Jones. With a large majority of the crowd sporting logos from metal’s more extreme end of the spectrum, it came as no surprise that THIS IS TURIN went down a treat to the Manchester masses. The intricacy of guitarists Davey Langford and Anthony Hayden demonstrated the band’s skill whilst bassist James Kinnear and drummer Edwin Jones kept the rhythm at a blistering pace. THIS IS TURIN’s performance demonstrated that the UK underground is stronger than ever.

Rating: 9

THE THREAT have experienced growing success over the last year or so, with a performance on the New Blood stage at last year’s Bloodstock Festival being a particular highlight. Yet the Manchester four piece failed to make as much of an impact as direct support to SOULFLY. Whilst riffs were solid from Sam Evans and Lewis Tyson and Chris Sellers’ guttural vocals packed an almighty punch, it certainly seemed that THE THREAT didn’t carry any threat at all. With the band utilising musical characteristics of progressive metal, death metal and jazz to create a unique sound that sounds fantastic on record, in a live environment it just didn’t translate too well. It’s not that THE THREAT were an earache, they just failed to replicate their crushing studio sound.

Rating: 6

Max Cavalera has been active in metal for decades and now and judging by SOULFLY’s performance, he is showing no signs of slowing down. From start to finish, SOULFLY pummelled out riffs and huge choruses that covered all aspects of the band’s 18-year career. New track, We Sold Our Souls To Metal, from the upcoming Archangel sounded mincing in a live environment and fan favourites such as Tribe and Prophecy. With a nod to his earlier work in SEPULTURA, covers of Arise, Dead Embryonic Cells and Roots Bloody Roots sent the crowd into a frenzy demonstrating clearly how respected Max Cavalera is in the metal community.  With a tight gelled band, SOUFLY’s sound was absolutely massive, Zyon and Igor Jr Cavalera both excelled in their respective fields of drums and bass, Marc Rizzo demonstrated technicality laced with brutality and Max Cavalera’s vocals roared over the assault. It led to one truly spectacular performance, showcasing that SOULFLY are still a force to be reckoned with.

Rating: 9

Check out our exclusive photo gallery from the night’s action in Manchester

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