Def Con One

With Support From Iron Knights and Intervention.

The Hairy Dog Derby 25th July 2014.

Tonight’s gig at the Hairy Dog, sadly was a sombre affair as far as attendance was concerned. I can only assume that was because metal heads are saving their pennies for the likes of Bloodstock  next week, shame really as the music was anything but sombre!

ADL Promotions kindly gave us permission to attend tonight, which we are eternally grateful for as the bill promised to be a right good mosh!

Kicking off proceedings were a local midlands based band “Intervention” who I’d never heard of, to be honest. On first appearances, they looked young, but looks can be deceiving. According to their Facebook page they established themselves back in 2012, so they should have something to offer? The band consists of Matt Hudson – Guitar/Vocals, Tom Threapleton – Drums and Phil Hoult – Bass.

Tom Theapleton - Intervention

If I was to describe their sound, I’d have to say early Mastodon, as their sound had a very metal/prog feel to it. Their own personal music taste was confirmed by the fact that Matt was wearing a T-shirt, with the album artwork from Mastodons first album, Remission, so an influential reference there straight away.

Matt had a little stage presence and tried to interact with the crowd and play up to the camera. He even announced we were going to have a metal waltz, of some kind, but went straight into another song, so he must of lost his bottle and carried on? Phil didn’t quite know what to do when I pointed the camera at him, I could see both fear and the concentration, in equal measure on his face, as to be fair it is a big camera and I’m quite ugly, so I probably unnerved him? Tom plodded along and kept everything going on drums. I feel these guys need to get a few more live shows under their belt, to give them a bit more confidence. Like a say, they’re still young, don’t give up lads, I’m sure Mastodon shit themselves, once upon a time?

Matt Hudson - Intervention

Next up were Iron Knights who thankfully, consisted of the same four musicians from when I saw them last back in February at The Vic. At that show, the then newly formed Iron Knights had only rehearsed 4 times prior to that gig, so they were noticeably well under rehearsed. I can confidently say tonight’s gig was a much better performance, with both Jamie – vocals and guitar and Wayne – guitar, looking a lot more confident this time round. I feel Jamie still needs to work on remembering his lines and needs to master co-ordinating himself better, I can only imagine how difficult it is to operate a guitar and sing at the same time (I’m not being sarcastic here) but in time these creases will get ironed out, I’m sure.

Jamie Gibson - Iron Knights

Both veteran musicians Paul on Bass and Larry on drums were excellent tonight, Paul especially looked to be enjoying himself, immensely and it’s always nice to see some who enjoys what they do.

What is reassuring is the bands newer tracks are sounding great, much better than their older material, so these guys are obviously working hard and well together. Tonight they offered the crowd a free track, which was nice. They also have a new track “Parasite” available on their soundcloud page, which is sounding very good and helps to give you an idea of the new direction this band are taking, it’s sounding very good indeed!

Iron Knights

Full set list consisted of;

1. Transparent 2. Destroyer 3. Falling From Grace 4. Jacob’s Ladder 5. Vicious Circle 6. Parasite 7. Bloodstorm 8. Genocide 9. Cry for Help 10. The Messenger 11. Blind 12. Snaggle Tooth 13. Jericho

During the intermission, I got the chance to talk with the headliners, Def Con One, which is always a pleasure and it has been way too long since we last spoke. In fact, the last time we talked was in March 2013 at Hammerfest V, where I also saw DCO perform and since then a lot has happened. The biggest news from these guys has to be the release of their second album II (or is that eleven? lol) This album was released around March this year, from memory and see’s DCO taking a different path musically, however, you still get that “Brute Force and Ignorance” we all fell in love with on their first album.

Def Con One

Apart from that, these guys have seemingly kept a low profile of late, that may have something to do with someone becoming a Granddad, (I know, hard to believe right!) someone getting married, congratulations and other life events have gotten in the way. Rest assured though, these guys never stop writing, so expect new material from these guys soon. The band have now joined the likes of Iron Knights under ADL Management and Booking Promotions, so it seems Anna is doing her stuff and getting these guys back on the road and into shows, where, quite frankly, these guys belong! You don’t have to wait too long either, as DCO will be supporting the mighty Biohazard on the 12th of August, at Trillians (Newcastle) and what a show that will be!

Antton Lant - Def Con One

As for tonight’s show, my goodness, what a show! Unfortunately the attendance was poor, like I said at the top of this review, but that didn’t stop them from performing out of their skins. They’d happily play at their best even if they had to buy one guy a pint to just sit there and listen but thankfully though, there were more than one of us!!! It was extremely hot, so the guys rattled through the set, which saw many comical moments, such as Davey jumping around like a mad man, which saw him land flat on his arse, which amused the rest of the band greatly. Being a great front man, Davey brushed this off with a comical remark “If you’re gonna do it, do it live on stage” I’m sure I’ve heard that somewhere before? We also saw Johnny doing a metal can can during one of their tracks, it’s always great to see everyone participate and enjoying themselves and enjoy we did.

Davey Miekle - Def Con One

Full set list consisted of;

1. Brute Force and Ignorance 2. 10 Bullets 3. In Death 4. Scarred for Life 5. March of the Dead 6. Strength 7. Skinhead Shaped Dent 8. Steeped in Pain 9. Soul Possessed 10. Broke 11. No More Hate 12. Warface

It was great to see both Iron Knight’s and Def Con One again tonight, all involved are stand up guys with a great work ethic who are also great conversationalists, but its on the stage these guys are at their best. I really hope to see either or both bands at more shows as they really give 110% and are really great artists, who produce great music!

Words and Photography by Jay Hawkins (JJ Photography UK)