Hils Ovation

O2 Academy3 Birmingham 25th July 2015.

There are some intriguing band names on tonight’s bill with none more so than first band of the night, Opheon! What exactly Opheon means, I don’t know but I can certainly confirm that it boasts four pretty impressive musicians in the shape of Liam O’Sullivan (Vocals & Guitar), Josh Warhurst (Guitar & Vocals), Daniel Jervis (Bass & Vocals) and Jonathon Potter (Drums). And when the opening band are as good and as captivating as these guys were – then you know that you’re in for a good nights gigging!


Our second set for tonight came from Secrets Of Mariana who describe themselves as ‘A female fronted rock band from Birmingham, combining metalcore and alternative rock to create a unique sound of their own’. First impressions of the band confirm this to certainly be the case as lead singer Amy Wyatt manages to combine both of these vocal styles in such a striking and fearless way, that a lasting impression was made for sure. Go check the band out and take a listen to ‘Chinese Whispers’ as it’s one hell of a track.

Secrets Of Mariana

Hailing from the Coventry area and marking the midway point of the evening were the groove/hardcore metalers, Inthroes. Their set tonight easily caught the attention of the O2 Academy3 audience, with its body of powerful vocals and brutal tuneage and I believe that a new EP is imminently on the cards from Inthroes aswell – so note made to self to keep an eye open for that one.


Our penultimate band for this evening were Vexxen and boy oh boy, do these guys know how to cook up the most perfect of metal storms. Their set tonight was intensive in both it’s composition and delivery and it’s the contribution of bands such as Vexxen that really does make the West Midlands metal scene as great as it is. Definitely a band to go see live if you’ve not seen them before!


Our headlining band tonight were Slaughter Horse and quite rightly so as the past twelve months has seen this band working hard at making a name for itself through an evolution that has to be applauded for it’s own bravery. In it’s present entity, Slaughter Horse stands as a deep and brazenly dark persona that shakes a fist in the visual face of conformity and you really do need to see them to believe it.

Slaughter Horse ..

The stage tonight offered the audience an open door into Slaughter Horse’s world of intense metal and surreal poetry and was the ideal showcase for the bands progression so far. The recording and release of a new EP is also on the horizon for these guys, so I genuinely anticipate what 2015 will continue to yield a further rain of hell fire and success for Slaughter Horse.

Slaughter Horse

So, in summary of tonight it really has been awesome to acquaint myself with several new bands and also to see the continued and promising progression of others and for me, that is exactly what a great Hils Ovation gig looks and sound like!

Review and Photography by Sue Wardle.