Our World Below?/ Under Blackened Skies/ Silence The Weak/
Rogue Reflections and Slaughter Horse.
The Slade Rooms Wolverhampton 12th July 2014.
It’s a double celebration tonight at The Slade Rooms as this evening serves as both Hils Ovations’ birthday bash and the launch of the new album from Our World Below? – ‘Democracy And The Illusion Of Choice’. History has taught us that Hils knows exactly how to throw a party so I’m sure that this one will be just as memorable as those gone by.
Tonight also see’s the debut gig from Slaughter Horse and it was so good to see a few familiar faces back on stage, those being Craig Keeting, Robert Greenfield and Jon Aymes, all formerly part of Stout Gentlemen. With a different sound and look than previously, Slaughter Horse gave us a well crafted set of songs that flew the melodic, yet raw metal flag. With this only being their debut gig, I can’t wait to see what is still yet to come.
Next up were Rogue Reflection who made light work of giving us our second debut gig of the night. With Rogue Reflection’s evolution being borne from the loins of the great Midland’s metal community, these guys are metalcore at its heaviest and brought with them a stage presence full of character.
It’s been said a thousand times that there is a great solidarity in the metal community and with Sean Westwood from Destroyed Beyond Belief getting up on stage to share vocals for one song, the proof of that statement, was certainly here to be seen.
There seems to be quite a buzz brewing about our third band for tonight, and quite rightly so as Silence The Weak are a band not to be missed as they posses exactly the right kind of raging talent that true metalcore basks in! Stand out track of the set was ‘Must Hang Sally’ and I was chuffed to hear that there is a video in the making for this one, so keep them peepers open for that one – I know I will be!
Under Blackened Skies are no newcomers to the metal community and with a repertoire of perilous melodic death metal that is savage to the bone, it was an absolute pleasure to witness their impact upon the growing audience here at The Slade Rooms. Front man Manu Patel, has a fearsome stage presence and a set of pipes to match, which when combined with the intensely brutal attack of Andy Davies on drums, simply make Under Blackened Skies, a band that you gotta see and experience.
I was stunned to discover that Our World Below? have only been together for just over twelve months as in my opinion, they have an exceptionally firm understanding of who they are and a strong knowledge of where they are going, which not all bands achieve in so short a time frame. With numerous musical influences and impressive individual experiences, Our World Below? draw out the many rich canvases of metal to create a dimension of their own and one which makes for endless potential.
Tonight’s christening of ‘Democracy And The Illusion Of Choice’ truly showered itself in glory with nothing spared in its attention for detail. From the onset of their broadcasted introduction to the outstanding lighting set up throughout, this was one launch that was guaranteed to notch up a milestone in the chronology of Our World Belows? and boy, was it something special to witness. I can honestly say that tonight they outdid their finest performance – this album is a killer!
And as to the birthday girl herself, well tonight was one of those rare occasions when Hils actually took a well deserved night off and let her hair down with the rest of the audience.
Words and Photography by Sue Wardle.