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Black Acid Souls

Zombie Hut Corby 20th March 2015.

Tonight we were invited all the way down to Corby to a new venue for us, the Zombie Hut which is located on the Rockingham Road – and that says it all really! It’s a pretty cool rock venue which shares a space with the local rugby club and looking around the venue I could see that it’s a popular venue for metal bands to play at, as I recognised many familiar names who we’ve regularly enjoyed watching and reviewing. If it wasn’t so far away and had slightly better stage lighting, I’d probably consider going to more shows at this venue but who knows!

The first band up tonight, I’m gonna call them TBC’d, simply because that’s what it said on the gig flyer and also for the fact that the lead singer tried making me look a dick during their set. There’s a saying ‘don’t bite the hand that feeds’ and for this reason I can’t be arsed to find out anything about them or waste any more of my precious time talking about them.

My best mates Fury were part of tonight’s line up and they too had made the long journey from Worcester to play tonight’s gig in Corby, they even stayed right to the very end to show their support for Black Acid Souls, which speaks volumes and solidifies my belief that these are some of the nicest guys in metal.

Julian Jenkins - Fury

For my troubles and getting down here tonight, I was awarded with a new track from these guys, called “Star Trippin”, which continues to tell a story that started with the track “Out Beyond the Stars”, which features on the band’s latest album ‘The Lightning Dream’. The band have got a busy year ahead of them with many shows already scheduled in, so be sure to check out their Facebook page and website for more information. I love this band so much, they will be big one day, they’ve got the stage show to support playing larger shows, they’ve even got the long pause between guitar change overs covered, as I saw tonight, when Jake the snake ripped into a masterful guitar solo, keeping us all entertained! Seriously, check um out!

Jake Beesley - Fury

Rest of the set consisted of: In To The Dark, Star Trippin’, Warrior’s Prayer, Out Beyond The Stars, Britannia, Prince Of Darkness, Haul Away and Drunken Sailor.

Black Acid Souls have been a little quiet of late, mainly because they’ve been locked away in the Studio along with the legendary producer Mr. Tsangardes, recording their new album ‘Shadow Walker’. We were lucky enough to be given a promo copy of the new album ahead of its official release date in May and after giving it several listens in a row, I can safely say this album will be received greatly as it has some awesome tracks on it. Personal favourites so far are ‘Bitter Taste Sweet’ and ‘Fight Back’, the later of which is an absolute belter, with some great air guitar moments in there aswell!

Tonight’s gig was the first time I’d been introduced to the bands new guitarist Zed. Fans of the band who’ve yet to see him in action, all I can say is he’s a very competent guitar player and you’ll not be left disappointed!

Zed - Black Acid Souls

I was a little shocked to see Dean the bands vox master, come onto the stage in his pants tonight and when I asked the reason why, he stated ‘If my girl friend wasn’t at the front, I was going to strip off’ thankfully, she saved us all the embarrassment of watching Dean’s bollox for an hour or so long set! ahhh… young love!

Flakey - Black Acid Souls

Chubbs was on another level tonight too, with his guitar playing being second to non, a very talented young man indeed, who loves to stick his very long tongue out – a lot…

Chubbs - Black Acid Souls

Hearing the new stuff live really helped me to understand this new album as the live setting is were it’s at – but we all know that and I’d strongly suggest getting yourselves a copy when it comes out in May, as it’s a work of art!

Hoff - Black Acid Souls

Until next time music fans!

Review and Photography by Jay Hawkins (JJ Photography UK)

The Answer

Rescue Rooms Nottingham 19th March 2015.

It’s not every week that we at get the chance to review a number 1 selling artist, but this week The Answer’s new album “Raise a little Hell” has done just that and topped Radio 1’s Rock Album Chart, great stuff and congratulations to them, it’s also well deserved as it’s a great album.

Before we get onto The Answer though, we had two great bands providing tonight’s support, the first one being the German duo The Picturebooks – oh, and their charismatic manager, who is was their third band member tonight aswell as also controling how these guys sound on stage!

As stated, there are only two members to this band, Fynn Claus Grabke – vocals, guitar & Philipp Mirtschink on the drums, but where they are lacking in numbers, they make up for it with true passion as every note is played with conviction. Philipp is either really angry or really loves playing the drums, as he kicked the shit out of his kit tonight! As you’d imagine, the bands sound is minimal yet rhythmic, which conjures though provoking images as you watch in amazement! These guys won’t be everyone’s cup of tea and initially I didn’t quite know what to make of these guys but after listening to their new album ‘Imaginary Horse’ I’m warming to them, a lot!

Philipp Mirtschink - The Picturebooks

Bad Touch next then and a band I first came into contact with at HRH 8, who I may have over looked slightly at that event and as tonight’s performance was great, we now have them firmly fixed on our radar for the future! Originally from Norwich, (The same town as The Darkness, ah it now makes sense) the band have won some pretty prestigious awards along the way, aswell as playing some major UK festivals, Download, Steelhouse, Legends of Rock and, as mentioned Hard Rock Hell – twice!

Daniel Seekings - Bad Touch

If I was to sum these guys up in a nutshell, I’d have to say something like “A very original rock and roll band, with great on stage presence” Stevie, on vocals is another charismatic character and a great front man, yet he’s still only 23 years of age. For a young band, they are mature for their years and an example of this maturity was seen by all tonight, when someone shouted something from the crowd, Stevie reassured the band “never ask” hahaha!

Stevie Westwood - Bad Touch

I have to give Mark Drewry, the bands manager/driver and father to drummer George, a massive shout out for finding and keeping safe a piece of very expensive camera equipment that I’d left at the Rescue Roomsand I’m happy to say, I managed to retrieve my property two days later, so thank you sir, you’ve managed to restore my faith in humanity!

So, before tonight’s show, we got exclusive access to The Answer, in particular bass player Michael Waters, who’s turn it was to be interviewed! Funny, I was in a room with the band and said, “so who’ve I got?”, to which the rest of the band all pointed at Michael, haha, they all love doing interviews, clearly.

Michael Waters - The Answer

So, after the obligatory “hello’s”, I got to ask Michael a few questions and here’s how the interview went:

I asked how they were all doing since the tour started a week ago?

“Well, it’s the first week, with a year since our last tour, so we’re all pretty drained getting back into the tour life, but we all get used to it and back into the groove by the second week”.

Are you Northern Irelands answer to rock and roll, as they’re ain’t many bands from that part of the world?

“You’ll have to come to tonight’s show and find out won’t you! Yes, I will, did and loved it!

We did actually see you guys play at Hard Rock Hell, during your tour of the album New Horizon, which was fantastic, can you remember that show?

“ah yeah, that was towards the end of a very long tour, we remember there were a lot of drunk people at that festival! Always!

“Raise a little Hell” is deservedly a number one album this week, what was your inspiration when writing this album?

“Well, we all contribute to the writing process, we don’t like to make stuff up so we tend to write about love, life and experiences within the band. In fact, we wrote a lot of this new album whilst on the last tour we’ve just mentioned”.

Paul Mahon - The Answer

My favourite track off the new album is “Long Live the Renegades” which opens the album, which is your favourite track to play and to listen too?

“To play, it has to be the title track “Raise a little Hell” which is going down a storm on ourlive shows. To listen to I’d have to say “Strange kinda nothing”, it’s just a great track!

There is a Deluxe version of this new album, which features some nice acoustic versions and bonus tracks, do any of these feature in the live set?

“Yes, it’s the first time we’ve tried it. Half way through, we strip it right back and its a real highlight for the fans. For years, we’ve been playing the same songs, pretty much, but we’ve ditched a lot of the old stuff and added in a lot of these new tracks into our live set, simply because we feel they can hold their own. We even have fans coming up to us and thanking us for playing the new material”.

Which has been your favourite night on this current tour so far?

“Glasgow was really good, it was a crazy Friday night”

So not the Liverpool gig then, seeing as it was St. Patricks day? (not sure if you celebrate it)

“We did actually, Cormac emptied two full bottles of whiskey, into glasses along the front row, so the crowd enjoyed it with us!

Cormac Neeson - The Answer

So what have you guys got on for the rest of the year?

“Well, we have the rest of the dates in the UK, then we head off to Europe for two months, basically were on the road until August now. Hell Fest is a big one for us, which were really looking forward to playing, as it’s one of the best festivals I’ve ever been to”

Who you looking forward to seeing play at that festival, if you get a chance?

Well I love ZZ Top, we’ve played with them a few times, in fact Billy Gibbs lent us one of his guitars to record some tracks on one of our albums once”. really, that’s fantastic!

I’ll finish with this, whilst on tour, do you guys having any games you play whilst on the road?

“Well, we don’t play many games, as such, but we all have a nasty habit of putting random objects in each others beds, which can get quite amusing!

As suggested, after trying to capture the lads on stage, I stuck around to watch the band rip through an amazing set, the new tracks are sounding great live. These guys have my vote, great stuff.

Review, Interview and photography by Jay Hawkins (JJ Photography UK)

Papa Roach

Rock City Nottingham 18th March 2015.

A quick little review of a lesser known band, Papa Roach (I jest) when they played Rock City the other week. Apologies as it’s taken me a while to get around to this, what with the sheer volume of gigs I’ve attended recently, it must nearly be festival season, can’t you tell?

The headliners had two bands supporting them tonight and sadly we missed The One Hundred who were on first, so apologies to them. We did get to see Coldrain though, which I was pleased about especially after tonight’s performance, as these guys, all the way from Japan are mental! Personally, I can’t think of a better band to warm up a crowd, what with their heavy, energetic metal. Speaking of energetic, these guys are like Ricky Hatton on speed, so I’m guessing it helps that their music isn’t all that technical as it enables them to run around and band their heads (A LOT) their riffs are basic, but do the job. Tonight’s lighting wasn’t good for these guys, which is a real shame as I doubt I’ll get to see them again in the UK any time soon, or will I…?

Masato - Coldrain

It seems Coldrain are regular festival goers, what with playing Download last year and this year they’ve already played the massive Soundwave Festival in Australia, so I wouldn’t be surprised if they are here again very soon! I know Radio 1’s Daniel P Carter has championed their new single ‘Evolve, and with such high profile support like Radio 1, major success should be immediate right? Still, it remains to be seen if they are bigger than their country (wo)man Babymetal though, but I can assure you their music is much better and the crowd tonight certainly enjoyed these guys! Their new album ‘Welcome To The Revelation’ is now available to preorder, just follow the link  here. The band consists of the following; Singing & Screaming – Masato, Lead Guitars – Y.K.C, Rhythm Guitars & Vocals – Sugi, Bass & Vocals – RxYxO, Drums – Katsuma

Sugi - Coldrain

With a short change over, it was the turn of the now legendary band Papa Roach. These guys are somewhat like marmite, you ever love them or hate them, personally I love the older stuff, that said this new album F.E.A.R has really grabbed mine and many others attention.

Jacoby Shaddix - Papa Roach

The band have been branded a bit of a teen band, but if you consider they exploded onto the music scene around 94, that was when I was a teen, so these guys have featured throughout half the time I’ve been alive and with tracks like ‘Last Resort’, ‘Between Angels And Insects’, ‘Broken Home’ and ‘Scars’ which are my personal favourites, it’s easy to see why these guys have stood the test of time and are still adored by many. In my opinion the album ‘Infest’ is a classic and still features in many of my playlists, as it helps to remind me of my days at university, trust me, I need all the memories I can get when it comes to that period in my life! So I can safely say I jumped at the chance to see these guys play live again, and to be given the chance to photograph them was a little bit special! I’m pretty gutted I missed the London show though, as they performed the album Infest’ in its entirety, you lucky lot!

Jerry Horton - Papa Roach

Tonight was the loudest I’ve heard a crowd at a Rock City gig – it was deafening, especial during the tracks I’ve previously mentioned. OK, it wasn’t so loud during the newer tracks that were played tonight, but the die hard faithful still knew the words and made as much noise as those that were probably hearing these new tracks for the first time.

Tobin Esperance - Papa Roach

I think I’m safe in saying Jacoby Shaddix is still a great front man, still very energetic and still a little bit cheeky, especially with a water bottle, I had to run for cover at one point as he was using it to squirt the crowd (and me) Jerry Horton, Tobin Esperance, Tony Palermo were also on top form tonight also.

Papa Roach

Having released not one, but four singles from their new album ‘F.E.A.R’, it speaks volumes to me that this album is very popular and is selling very well and in all honesty, I’m loving most of the album as it’s loud and it’s heavy with some very catchy tunes and great lyrical content. When you consider these guys are still producing music of this quality, some twenty one years since they started out, there ain’t many artists that can say that – long live Papa Roach!

Review and Photography by Jay Hawkins (JJ Photography UK)