Swindon Town Demonstrates Some Of Its Metal Talent
Swindon town, located about an hours drive away from the capital of Great Britain, London, isn't the first place one would think of when it comes to British metal. People would normally associate places like London, Birmingham, Newcastle and maybe Swindon rivals Bristol for that. Swindon itself is known more for having... roundabouts and trains. Cool eh?
However, within this growing town lies a movement, one that half of the towns youth follows like a rabid cult. That movement is the Swindon metal scene, and few people would doubt that Kilians Red rule that scene with an iron fist!
On June 30th at Swindon's most well known rock club, The Furnace, Kilians Red headlined a bill which would show any visitors to the region that the scene in Swindon is not be ignored. The show opened with a band named Death Of A Warlord. A band which wore their influences on their sleeve (quite literally as a member was wearing a long sleeved Burzum shirt!). Any fan of black metal was in for a treat as DOAW tore into their set with full power. Black metal may be joke to some but these boys were more serious about their music than any black metal band yours truely has ever seen. Indeed from first glance and from their proffessionalism, you would never believe the members are only thirteen and fourteen years old! One to watch for the future of British black metal!
After Death Of A Warlord's set, the crowd was clearly excited to see the next band, Blessed By Death. Although this band have only played a handful of shows, they are anything but inexperienced seeing as how they include members of a band which did alot for Swindon metal named Buried Beneath. I had witnessed Buried Beneath only once before and that was at their farewell show so I wasn't sure what to expect from Blessed By Death. However, as soon as the first note was struck, they proved that they weren't just Buried Beneath part two, they were Blessed By Death and they were here to conquer! And conquer they did as they tore into their set with blistering precision and tunes which are destined to become staples of the scene before long such as Watching You Die. Blessed By Death have an attitude that only they can carry in the Swindon area, one of "If you like us great, if not we don't care", other bands should take note of how they pull this attitude off without being too cocky. They also recruited one Lee Brennan of local metal heroes Ventflow to perform with them much to the delight of everyone. All in all Blessed By Death certainly won over some new fans on this night, myself included!
Next to take the stage were Black Skies Burn, although they often play in Swindon, they are actually from Oxford (as British football fans will be able to tell you, Swindon and Oxford despise each other), however there was no negativity directed towards them from the Swindon boys tonight and with good reason, they know their stuff! They were there to make a statement which they clearly did with their t- shirts alone (a picture of The Pope with bleeding eyes and hands with the slogan "God is dead, he gave up on mankind") but their music overshadowed the image strongly. Ripping into their set with standout songs like Born Of Hate and Cast Darkness Aside, they got the floor into a frenzy of pure hatred and aggression like no other. Expect Black Skies Burn to be headlining their own gigs soon, they deserve to!
Finally we come to the band everyone had come to see, Kilians Red. Although it was revealed after the set that this would be their final show with bassist Joe, no-one would have ever have been able to tell as they took to the stage with nothing but admiration being given to them by the crowd. They surprised everyone by charging full speed into a cover of Soil's "Halo" with everyone, including people who don't even like Soil shouting the title back at them. From the get go it was mosh pits galore as bodies flew everywhere in the name of Kilians Red. Indeed some people could hardly stand up when they left the carnage being caused on the floor! Kilians then launched into their own material, performing their new self titled EP in it's entirity. Standout songs of the night had to be "The Bleeding" and "Retribution". As any Kilians fan should be able to tell you, "The Bleeding" is a song written by Kilians Red for their fans and they showed how much they truely do appreciate the fans by playing this song with ferocity turned up to the max! "Retribution" is perhaps their most well known song and carries the message of standing your ground much better than any speech made by a character from the movie Green Street ever could. As if they didn't already have the audience eating out of the palm of their hand, they received their respect fuly aswell as they launched into Machine Head's latest single Aesthetics Of Hate with pure heart and soul. Then came something I had never seen before from a local band as the crowd demanded an encore and Kilians Red were more than happy to comply with this request as they brought Paul Elston from another local band who are recognized with nothing but respect, Prometheus, to perform a second Machine Head cover. This time they delivered a cover of Imperium with no prisoners being taken. A scorching end to a blistering night!
If you would like to check out any of these bands mentioned in this article then feel free to check any of them out on Myspace.com!
or if you are wondering what Ventflow and Prometheus sound like the check out:
Ollie Hynes has been a writer for Metal Underground.com for four years and has been a metal fan for ten years, going so far as to travel abroad for metal shows.
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