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Tuesday, 20 March 2018

A View From The Back Of The Room: Turbowolf

Turbowolf, Puppy, Big Spring, Trinity Bristol

Into the converted church again this time for something a bit more crazy first out was the bristling alt rocking of Big Spring (7) with a myriad of sounds coming through. There's some Alice In Chains, some Smashing Pumpkins a touch of Royal Blood along with a lot of intricate melodies wrapped in big grooves. Vocalist had a great grunge drawl, guitarist made some odd sounds by mangling his six string and the rhythm section was big and heavy. An appealing set of confidently performed alt rock music getting everyone warmed up nicely.

Next up it three pretty unassuming guys took to the stage making a big noise. Puppy (6) have massive proggy riffs with an edge of Deftones and smattering of Muse, grooves galore as they set about to destroy the Trinity centre with sound not too dissimilar to American band 3, mainly due to the vocals which I accept can be a little Marmite, instrumentally though they are as heavy as a box of lead spanners. The drummer bashing his kit like it owed him money, the bassist locking in to some hefty bottom end rhythms and the guitarist, despite his singing, can let fly with some neat six string action. An odd mix of sounds if they were totally instrumental they'd be really good but the vocals are a little too whiny for my taste.

What came next was sheer madness from the first second, delivering one of the most incendiary live performances I've ever seen to a crowd that were well up to it, hometown heroes arrived on stage to a rapturous reception and proceeded to lay waste to the Trinity Centre prompting massive amounts of bouncing, clapping, shouting, pitting and waves after wave of crowd surfing (who were all safely handled by the road crew so cheers to them). Kicking off the night with the swirling psych of Capital X opening the show with a newbie is a risk but the partisan crowd knew every word, with Blake Davies locking in behind his kit the riffs came fast and loose from Andy Ghosh while Lianna Lee Davies buzzed and rumbled her basslines.

All eyes though were on Chris Georgiadis who while decked out in a very swish 70's inspired suit and shirt combo writhed, thrusted, headbanged and while doing all that also managed to manipulate his keyboard and never missed a single note with his great voice. The punk rock rumble of American Mirrors caused chaos before the funk rocking of Cheap Magic and Solid Gold hit the crowd with a head spinning array of colossal riffs, danceability and a mesmerising light show. The pace only dropped when the songs stopped, if they stopped, as live the band do like to extend their short stabs of madness with some jamming but this made the crowd want even more.

Halfway through the set and only half an hour had gone by, this was going to be a flier but with a band that have as much primal energy that any more than an hour and people may start to die from exhaustion. More snotty punk with Blackhole before the centerpiece of Ancient Snake/The Big Cut saw Chris enter the fray and command them like a cursed shaman to unleash hell on his signal. It was up to the groovy Domino to bring a sense of normality but after that it was straight back to it for the closing duo of the aggressive Good Hand and the riotous space thrash of Very Bad. After this we got a brief intermission played by the keyboard, it was the longest segment of stillness at the whole gig and it allowed a breather and water to be taken on board by everyone.

As it finished the rampage continued with A Rose For Crowns, Rabbits Foot and after a few thank you's from this well spoken, very appreciative band playing in front of their hometown crowd the finale of The Free Life gave everyone one last shot of adrenaline to really get things moving with 8 crowd surfers counted including Chris at the end of the song. I'd heard that Turbowolf's (10) domain is the stage and in a converted church in Bristol on a damp Thursday night there was probably nowhere else I'd rather be, even the sceptical Mr Hewitt agreed that Turbowolf were awe inspiring.

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