Alestorm w/Support @ Garage, Glasgow

Bands: Alestorm, Claim The Throne and Darkest Era

Location: The Garage, Glasgow

Date: 10th February, 2012

Having arrived at the venue a total of 4 hours early, escaping the tedium of normal life, I proceeded to get into a suitably piratey mood for the reason the horde had gathered (well, there were 6 of us at the time, but it grew). Having been backstage to interview Gazz and Elliot, grabbed a beer or two and engaged in all manner of forms of lunacy, I returned to the ever-swelling mass and entered Glasgow’s Garage on a mighty quest for gold, rum and Pirate metallers, self-proclaimed “Useless Drunken Bastards” Alestorm.

Opening the gig were Irish metal warriors Darkest Era, a personal favourite of my own. They thundered through a glorious half hour set, playing mostly from their new album, “The Last Caress of Light,” but “On the Crest of Doom” sneaking in from their “The Journey Through Damnation” EP. Whipping the Glasgow crowd into a frenzy wasn’t difficult with such incredible sings as “Heathen Burial,” “The Morrigan” and the 11 minute wonder of “The Last Caress of Light Before the Dark.” The latter in particular I didn’t expect to see, due to its epic scale, but it was somewhat more than welcome. One of my favourite bands certainly proved that night that they were more than worthy of the awesome reception they got. Get them back here, is all I can say!

Claim The Throne, of an Australian origin, followed. A band that I had not heard much of, until that point, they proved extremely entertaining, with the first use of tambourine at any metal gig I’ve been to.  The crowd loved them though; songs like “Set Sail on Ale” resulted in copious amounts of moshing. The appearance of Alestorm’s Gareth Murdock with a beer funnel went down with ecstatic applause, especially when the keyboard player drank the whole thing. While playing. She also got lost crowdsurfing at one point. Safe to say, this is a brilliant band, with a brutal edge and a horde of fans. No doubt they would be welcomed back with reckless abandon as well!

Of course, there was no stopping the onslaught of our Scottish (well, two of them are Scottish) brethren, and to the tune of a dance remix of “Shipwrecked,” Alestorm leapt heartily onto stage. Alestorm are one of those bands that it is desperately important in your life to drop everything to go and see, and without a doubt, it was one of those nights where everything went brilliantly.  “Shipwrecked” into “Wenches and Mead” into “Leviathan”… it was relentless, and all the better for it. Of course, one doesn’t just go to see Alestorm for the music, oh no… the in-between song banter literally had me in tears of laughter. When a Glaswegian crowd begins to shout “CHUG CHUG CHUG” at your buckfast-occupied hands, you’d normally do what they say… Chris Bowes dismisses this with “Yer all Dicks!” Getting “A wee bit slow… and homosexual,” they jumped straight into “Nancy the Tavern Wench,” which had the entire crowd swaying like Glaswegians on a Friday night… which, coincidentally, they were. Other highlights included “No Quarter” and it’s brilliant Pirates of The Caribbean theme, which had a massive singalong , the black metal brutality of the epic “Death Throes of the Terrorsquid,” a wall of death and the amount of crowd surfing indicated that the crowd would make incredible seamen… or, at least, were incredibly drunk. They go hand in hand really.

A truly brilliant gig, all in all, and one that had to be experienced… this review in no way does it justice. Get Drunk or Die!

Alasdair Dunn of Norderobring

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