Tag Archives: fire red empress

Diamond Head

 The Robin2 Bilston 18th August 2016.

As the steam cools on the heels of Bloodstock tonight’s gig at the Robin2 is set to raise the metal momentum again with none other than the cult metallers Diamond Head fired up to raise some horns in true British metal style.

But first up and definitely a band never to miss were Fire Red Empress, whose enigmatic delivery of fully charged rock is fast becoming second to none.

Jen Diehl - Fire Red Empress

With the impending release of their debut album including a track co-penned by Brian Tatler himself, the song ‘Black Morphine’ was a must have and fitting inclusion in their set tonight and judging by the hearty cheers of appreciation it received from the Robin2’s audience, this song is set to become a firm favourite from the band.

Benny Picken - Fire Red Empress

Fire Red Empress are one hell of a great band to see live and tonight’s set from them has definitely gone down in my book as first class!

So what can I say about Diamond Head that hasn’t already been said over the past forty years – probably not a lot as here we have a band who have consistently and continuously made their mark on the NWOBHM scene.

Tonight’s set from the band was ablaze with adrenaline from start to finish and was a powder keg of songs that included the long standing crowd pleasing tracks ‘Shoot Out The Lights’, ‘It’s Electric’ and a particular rare live performance of ‘Knights Of The Sword’.

Brian Tatler - Diamond Head

But as much as those great songs will always remain iconic of Diamond Head’s achievements, it was the opportunity to hear some of their new material, including the songs such a ‘Diamonds’ and ‘Bones’ played live, which really did hit the spot for me tonight!

Andy Abberley - Diamond Head

There is something quite awesome about the bands recent writings and self titled release ‘Diamond Head’ as it marries both their ageless sound and style, which we all know and love, with a freshness of energy and to me, that all equates to the start of great things still to come from the band.

Dean Ashton - Diamond Head

As for the highlight of the evening, well for me that has to be without doubt, the most anticipated song of the set ‘Am I Evil?‘. A Highlight not just because it is synonymous to Diamond Head but because both band and audience gave it 150%, which really was the most fantastic experience to be part of.

Rasmus Bom Andersen - Diamond Head

The next couple of months will see Diamond Head touring the UK and judging by tonight’s performance for the band, what a tour that is going to be!

Review and Photography by Sue Wardle.

Hils Ovation

O2 Academy3 Birmingham 28th May 2016.

Tonight’s Hils Ovation gig has the making of a rather spectacular night, with performances lined up from Netherhall, Pelugion, Martyr De Mona and the remarkable Fire Red Empress – and you couldn’t want for much more than that!

Netherhall were our first band of the night and for me, this was a much anticipated experience as I had yet to see them perform live. With the band comprising of two former members of Glassbullet, I was holding my breath as to whether or not I would feel their evolution and for the first ten seconds I did have doubts, but those doubts were quickly erased as not only did they look different but they sounded different aswell. Netherhall’s sound is still heavy but with a deeper emotive edge to it that on occasion sent my mind reminiscing back to the classic strains of Robert Miles and never in a million years would I have expected that! Am I excited about what the future holds for Netherhall – yes, I certainly am as there is something very special emerging here and I can’t wait to see where it takes them!

Paul Berry - Netherhall

It’s been way too long since I last saw Pelugion and shame on me for that but tonight’s set was well worth the wait, as their performance was as wild and untamed as I’d hoped it would be. With their track ‘Serpent’s Mistress’ being a particular favourite of mine due to it’s mesmerizing guitar riffs and the brazen vocals of Andy Sweeney, I was pretty chuffed to hear it played in the bands set tonight. It was also particularly cool and pretty brave of the band to include a cover version of Megadeth’s ‘Symphony Of Destruction’ which was just about ten minutes old but then that’s Pelugion for you – fearless and creative to the point of no holds barred.

Andy Sweeney - Pelugion

Our penultimate band for tonight were Martyr de Mona who have been very firm favorites of the Midlands metal scene for a fair few years now but even with that degree of familiarity for regular gig goers, these guys always deliver a set second to none.

Josh Wooldridge - Martyr de Mona

Tonight’s performance at the O2 was indeed outstanding with the energy both on and off stage radiating an atmosphere that was nothing short of exceptional and the kind of experience that you really don’t want to end. You can catch Martyr de Mona at several great events over the forthcoming summer months, so keep an eye on their Facebook page for all the latest updates.

Louis Hale - Martyr De Mona

Time certainly is flying by for Fire Red Empress with it only being a matter of six short months since Jen Diehl made her debut appearance in the band at last years Midlands Metal Crusade and already Fire Red Empress have a new album which is just about ready for launching. Tonight’s set promised the opportunity to hear a host of new material from it along with a few firm favorites and for me, that was something not to be missed!

Ben Picken - Fire Red Empress

With the stage swathed in fiery red lights, the band were welcomed onto the stage loudly by the audience of a pretty packed out O2 Academy3 and what then followed was a completely addictive set that was nothing short of compelling to see and hear. This band have never lacked in the stage presence department but with Jen Diehl’s character, confidence and vocal ability truly shinning through, I can wholehearted predict that Fire Red Empress are destined for many great things yet to come.

Jen Diehl - Fire Red Empress

I left the O2 Academy3 tonight feeling like I had just witnessed something quite special, as not only had the bands given 110% but there was an atmosphere of excitement in the room which had rolled out across the audience and band members alike. And that my friend, is exactly what the thrill of live music is all about!

Review and Photography by Sue Wardle.

Midlands Metal Crusade V

The Slade Rooms Wolverhampton.

Today marks the occasion of the Midlands Metal Crusade V returning to Wolverhampton and at 3.30pm sharp, our first band of the day took to the stage.

Toward The Grave looked like a band well happy to be here and played a great set that was laden with brutal guitar riffs and the savage vocals of Russ Snipe. I greatly admire this band for consistently combining so many aspects of the metal genre and creating a style that has both darkness and groove within its core. No doubt about it at all, Toward The Grave gave the early crowd a first rate start to the day.

Next band up were Slaughter Horse and these guys were one of the must see bands of the day for me. Sadly, they were one man down with Jim Chilton being absent from the stage, but it was still game on for the band with Craig Keating picking up the vocals and keeping their set as ferocious as ever. Next date in the diary for the Slaughter Horse is 29th January when they will be supporting Evil Scarecrow back here at the Slade Rooms – and what a night that is guaranteed to be!

Craig Keating - Slaughter Horse

With the audience well ready for more, the third band of today were Our World Below? and with these guys being no strangers to the local metal scene, there was a fair size fan base waiting to greet them. Today’s set from the band was one of the best performances I’ve seen them deliver, with the vocals of Dave Riley exceeding already high expectations. I’m really liking the current line up of the band which now seems like their best fit ever, so roll on many more gigs in 2016!

Another band on my must see list for today – and also on that of quite a few others were Fire Red Empress, as this was to be the first live performance for Jennifer Diehl who has recently taken on lead vocal duties for the band. Seeing and hearing Jennifer own those well known and much loved Fire Red Empress songs today, confirmed my hope that this will be the beginning of a new dimension for the band and I cannot wait to hear what comes out of the recording studio next year!

Jennifer Diehl - Fire Red Empress

The half way point of the day heralded the onset of Eradikator’s set and no doubt about it at all, these guys were on top form as their metal was certainly molten tonight. With their new album ‘Edge of Humanity’ receiving some very positive reviews, their performance served to justifiably confirm those views and for those who didn’t get to see them today or simply want to see them again, Eradikator will be hosting a Launch Party at the O2 Academy 3 on Saturday 23rd January 2016!

Patrick Cox - Eradikator

Next up on stage were Burden Of The Noose and undoubtably, this band never fail to execute one of the most intense live performances to be experienced. Lead singer Andy Barraclough is a master of menace on stage with his never ending corrosive gaze deftly underpinning the ferocity of his vocals and always serving to compliment this bands musical brutality. An excellent set from the band tonight.

Gehtika are a band who need very little introduction as their ostentatious stage presence and extravagant metal is well known and well loved by many. Tonight’s set included several tracks from their recently released album ‘A Monster In Mourning’ and in true Gehtika style combined with the spirit of expect the unexpected, their was a spot of onstage appreciation from a fan too!

Topher O'Meager - Gehtika

Our penultimate band for this evening were The Heretic Order and after seeing them at a previous Crusade, this band have grown to become a firm favourite of mine. Tonight’s set from them was loaded with atmosphere and a good helping of audience participation aswell and for me, their set was over way too fast. With a new tour in the planning for next year, The Heretic Order are facing a busy 2016, so do check out their forthcoming dates as these guys are well worth the price of a ticket!

Lord Ragnar Wagner - The Heretic Order

One thing that every Crusade always delivers, is a headlining band guaranteed to surpass expectations and this Crusade was to be no different, with non other than Raging Speedhorn set to raise the Slade Rooms roof tonight. With the stage undergoing the required transformation, the audience numbers swelled but given this bands popularity and long standing achievements, that was only to be expected. Nothing was held back from the band or from the audience either as their set got underway and it really was a performance that put the hard in hardcore!

Frank Regan - Raging Speedhorn

Today’s crusade lacked for nothing apart from the unavoidable absence of Hils Ovation however the Slade Rooms raised a glass or two in appreciation of all Hils’ hard work and for making this great event happen.

Review and Photography by Sue Wardle.