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Monday, 3 October 2016

A View From The Back Of The Room: Orange Goblin

Orange Goblin, Electric Citizen, Poseidon, Lacertillia, The Globe Cardiff

My fist gig for a while and on paper it looked like an absolute blinder, four riff hungry stoner/psych/doom bands together in one show. Doors opened early and by 7pm local noise merchants Lacertillia (7) came Crashing Into The Future with their psych influenced stoner metal, the five piece played a set drawn from their EP and full length debut and barely stopped for breath due to the shortness of their set. As normal vocalist Matt was quickly topless and throwing himself around the floor of the venue as they blasted through their set. Every time I see Lacertillia they get better and even in a short set they make an impact, well worth catching again.

Next up were London sludge merchants Poseidon (6), they were plagued by some serious sound problems for the beginning of their set meaning that they struggled to get into the set, but once they started properly their thick, sludge riffage couldn't fail to get your head nodding, Poseidon were probably odd band out on this bill, crushingly heavy and drenched in feedback and discord, a few of the crowd struggled but most reacted to the aural battering the band gave The Globe. What was noticeable in the crowd was the sheer mix of punters, the beard to hair ratio was definitely in favour of beards, but along with the normal cast of Sons Of Anarchy, there were those that had hardcore punk shirts, more mainstream rock and also a surprising amount of fleece wearing oldies, that did seem to spend most of the gig going back and forth to the bar looking slightly bemused by the noise coming from the stage.

As the PA pumped out Clutch and Mastodon almost exclusively we waited for the main support, now I'd seen them before supporting Wolfmother on their last UK tour, but as good as they were they were let down by the sound a little, unfortunately when the Cincinnati, Ohio foursome took to the stage in The Globe, there was a similar problem. The vocals of Laura Dolan were muffled by the riffs of her husband Ross' guitar, Randy Proctor's bass and Nate Wagner's drums, things weren't starting well but Electric Citizen (7) took it in their stride and after the first song the vocals were sorted meaning that you could hear Laura's harmonious wails over the Sabbath worshipping music. I've bandied this term around but when I say Sabbath worship, I mean it, many of the songs they played were so similar to the originators of heavy metal that for those of us well versed in the Birmingham legends we were playing spot the riff. They got a rapturous reception at the climax of their set and served as the ideal aperitif for the headliners.

So the changeover and the classic "Long Way To The Top (If You Want To Rock N Roll)" burst out of the PA and Ben, Joe, Martyn and Chris took to the stage, Ben booming his greeting as they kicked into Scorpionica, Joe's guitar cut out four bars in leaving just the bass and drums with Ben's booming voice. There wasn't a quick fix so with apologies the rest of the band left the stage and there was a noticeable lull. Finally after a few minutes there was a chord and life an bang Orange Goblin (8) returned at full pelt, it meant a truncated set but as the ploughed into The Devil's Whip, Saruman's Wish, Made Of Rats, the evergreen Some You Win, Some You Lose and The Filthy And The Few we got the classic Orange Goblin staples but the band did seem a little more loose than normal, the sound problems continued with feedback on the mic, but most of the crowd couldn't care less they banged their heads, pumped their fists and threw their horns to They Come Back (Harvest Of Skulls) and Quincy The Pigboy. The crowd was reasonably big for a Sunday night but the sound issues found them a little muted at the beginning however by the time Red Tide Rising came to finish Goblin had the crowd eating out of their hands. I've seen this band so many times and they always give 110% but there was a little ring rust tonight, still like I said no one else gave a shit and partied until their necks hurt and that folks is what it's all about.     

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