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Saturday, 23 March 2013

View From The Back Of The Room: Jagermeister Tour

Jagermeister Tour: Ghost, Gojira, The Defiled & Revoker, Bristol O2 Academy

Once again into the horrible Bristol Academy and once more on to the balcony for 2013's Jagermeister Tour. With tickets at £5 last year’s sold out in record time, this year’s however hadn't that could be due to the niche and admittedly mixed nature of the bands on the bill. They cast a wide net with the 70's style occultist rockers Ghost headlining over Gojira who had their own headline tour earlier in the year. However the place was quite full mainly due to the price although the amount of people fluctuated throughout the night.


All of the openers on this tour were local bands and Revoker are local to Bristol, apparently, even though they noticeably hail from the Rhymney Valley. All that aside they were a good warm up storming through a short set of their best songs and one from their long awaited second album. The band are tight and professional but still always seem a bit lost in big rooms. Still a good warm up act from this 'local' act. 7/10

The Defiled

A band that I've never seen and quite frankly I wouldn't want to see them again as they really did nothing for me. They came onto the stage like a militarised Goth band all black eyeliner and camo. The singer looked like Robert Smith/Nikki Sixx and sang like so many popular core bands which was completely at odds with his posh speaking voice. The rest of the band stood completely still in their delivery with only the preening 'keyboardist' AVD having any movement about him. As far as the music was concerned it mixed from breakdown heavy metal to self-hating emo-core. The Defiled had fans in the crowd I personally will not be seeing them again as they are a bit too boring for my tastes. 4/10


Finally the band that the majority of the crowd came to see, and the first that were a dead cert to be liked by everyone. Gojira are possibly one of the heaviest live acts on the circuit and even when above the stage you can still feel the heavy down tuned playing and wall of sound riffage that these Frenchmen are known for. This was a celebratory almost greatest hits set with Backbone, Flying Whales, The Heaviest Matter In The Universe, Ourobouros and Toxic Garbage Island all included in the set with three also coming from the newest album L'Enfaunt Sauvage. All of the songs killed causing huge pits to form in the centre of the room. the band were as usual extremely tight with the Duplantier brothers causing hell on rhythm guitar and drums respectively while bassist John Labadie jumped around the stage like a mad man. Gojira played their nine song set to perfection and easily destroyed all of the fans in attendance with their very heavy metal, it was nice to see them play a concise powerful set as they brought the pain with every song as their man set can become a bit too much with the constant brutality. 9/10


Then came the mass exodus, most of the venue emptied after Gojira's set showing that there are always perils with these wide net bills. Still the faithful stayed and after a lengthy set up the bells began to toll Ghost's arrival the intro of Jocelyn Pook's Carnival came over the P.A as the 5 hooded ghouls came to the stage and began busting out the hard rock riffage. The twin leads blazed and the organ was being flared up wildly for the first track Infestissuman which is the title track off their not yet released second album. They followed this with another new one in the shape of Per Aspera Ad Inferi both of these tracks fitted brilliantly and were explosive enough to get the crowd going from the off. The mysterious Papa Emeritus II (same man different character) still had the same slow theatrical stage crafted he exerts with cardinal outfit and skull mask still in place. His voice is highly vocoadered so and the band have lots of backing tapes so you can't really tell how good his voice actually is but Ghost are all about the presentation and they have a lot of that with their occult mystique. Most of their debut was aired with Death Knell, Stand By Him, Prime Mover, Satan Prayer and Ritual all still great live songs. However the real delight lay with the new tracks of which the two openers and Year Zero were the best but all of them bode well for a second album. Ghost can put on a great show and this has gained them a cult following, however they seemed out of place on this tour with three very heavy bands and they also need to get a slightly different stage shtick if they don't want to become a bit repetitive in the live arena. 8/10

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