Archive for Stereo

Flotsam and Jetsam w/ support – Glasgow, Scotland

Posted in Gig, Live with tags , , , , , , , on 12th July 2015 by Paul Macmillan

Circle Of Tyrants, Black Talon, Bliksem, Flotsam And Jetsam
Stereo, Glasgow (UK)
20th May 2015

Flotsam And Jetsam

It’s been over a month since Flotsam and Jetsam returned to Scotland – the first time in a couple of decades, none-the-less – and yet, their performance at Glasgow’s Stereo venue is still stuck in my mind, firmly holding one of the top spots in the list of memorable events. It seems only justified to put pen to paper, or text to internet in this case, to spread the good word.

Holding only a capacity of 300, the venue’s main gig room provided a very much up-close-and-personal atmosphere, aided in no small part by the fact that there are no crowd barriers for the three foot high stage, and members of Flotsam were quite happily mingling with the rest of the crowd. It’s testament to their down to earth nature that a band who have featured former members who went on to join the likes of Metallica and Prong, and who have played to massive audiences all over the world, still clearly see themselves as ‘one of us’.

Bliksem live - Stereo, Glasgow

The supports for the night are all very apt; Circle Of Tyrants step up first, receiving a warm response for their Testament-meets-Beholder stylings, followed closely by technical street-thrashers, Black Talon, promoting their fresh debut Endless Realities. There’s a constant stream of stage diving on the go, with enthusiastic thrashers repeatedly braving the possibility of cranial damage from the support pillars on the dance floor. When Bliksem take the stage, it’s much to the surprise of those few in the audience who have checked them out in advance. They blast out a sterling performance, which, according to the opinions of those in the know, surpasses the recorded works available from them online.

Of course, the crown absolutely and positively goes to Flotsam and Jetsam themselves. They know their audience well, and don’t try to push newer material on them as hard as some others may do in a similar position. In fact, it only seems to be Gitty Up which makes an appearance from 2012’s Ugly Noise. The initial focus is firmly on the early classics, and it’s a decision that sets necks a-snapping; No Place For Disgrace, She Took An Axe, Desecrator – even Der Fuhrer makes an appearance later in the set. Surprisingly, the crowd erupts even further when mid-nineties number, Smoked Out, comes powering in with its iconic opening riff.

 Flotsam And Jetsam live - Stereo, Glasgow

While it is a little sad that Jason B Ward and Kelly Smith (formerly bass and drums respectively) couldn’t make this outing, but the lack of their presence is more than made up for by the sheer enthusiasm of Michael Spencer and Shadows Fall’s Jason Bittner (again, bass and drums respectively). Throughout the performance, there’s no slacking. No making do. When it’s full force thrash, it’s full force thrash, no quarter asked or given. Where frontman Eric A K maybe can’t quite hit some of the high notes he could in his youth, he has developed equally as effective means of delivering the same power. The riffing is as fast, tight and furious as ever on all fronts, and younger bands could learn a thing or two here about dedication and determination. Flotsam and Jetsam may be a band that’s getting grey, but this ain’t no placid dinosaur! It’s a sabre-toothed cat the size of a school bus!

by Paul Macmillan

Jettblack announce special guests for UK tour

Posted in News with tags , , , , , on 3rd September 2012 by Nico Solheim-Davidson, the North Sea Poet

Night By Night – the five-piece hard rock band from London – will be guest support for Jettblack’s debut UK headline tour, set to take place in October of this year.

This run of dates is something we’re 100% geared up for, as it’s our first ‘proper’ headline tour of the UK; meaning we can deliver a set which represents both albums, ‘Get Your Hands Dirty’ [2010] and ‘Raining Rock’ [2012]. We’ve got more flexibility to put on a show, and not fire through the set at 100mph! It’s all about entertaining and leaving (hopefully) with a smile ear to ear, sweaty locks, and a stiff head-bangin neck! The last London date was a sell-out, so get in there quick! Hands shall be Dirtied & Rock will Rain! Can’t wait to see ya!” comments Matt Oliver, drummer of Jettblack.

Night By Night guitarist Ben Christo adds “We’re absolutely thrilled to be hitting the road with the mighty Jettblack. It’s gonna be a challenge to match their super-polished, high-octane melodic metal, but we’re ready to rise to it!

Tickets can be purchased here


10th – The George, Andover
11th – Bristol, Exchange
12th – Joiners, Southampton
13th – Bogiez, Cardiff
14th – Rock City, Nottingham
16th – The Stereo, York
17th – Trillians, Newcastle
18th – Voodoo, Belfast
19th – The Pint, Dublin
20th –Eric’s, Liverpool
21st – Slade Rooms, Wolverhampton
26th – The Underworld, London
28th – Exeter, Cavern

Jettblack are also confirmed to play Hard Rock Hell 2012, which takes place in North Wales from 29th November – 3rd December.

Cryptic Age w/Support @ Stereo [Live Review]

Posted in Live with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on 16th July 2011 by Nico Solheim-Davidson, the North Sea Poet

Bands: Cryptic Age, Lost Effect, Windrider
Location: Stereo, York
Date: 15th July 2011

The night was certainly a most anticipated event as it was Cryptic Age’s first gig as the headlining band. Originally four bands were booked for the night but one of them had dropped out. The doors were due to open at 7:30pm though didn’t open until nearer 8pm – Though this didn’t deter those who had already arrived for a night of metal.

Critically acclaimed folk metal quartet Windrider were the first to perform. Their usual guitarist, Lee, was absent due to injury so Windrider’s bassist Hallam filled in on guitar whilst Cryptic Age’s bassist Tom filled in as bassist for the night. At the beginning of Windrider’s set, the crowd was somewhat small though they soon filled in after the first song “In The Hall Of The Slain”. Despite playing a small stage, the band were extremely active receiving a great reaction from the crowd, especially with the performances of “A Warrior’s Tale” [The title track of the recent Windrider EP of the same name] and “Slaughter From The Shadows”. It was certainly an impressive performance.

The second band of the night were Lost Effect who describe themselves as “melodic metal”. Their set was certainly most interesting as they mixed brutalising riffs with melodic sections topped off with the clean, operatic-like vocals of the front woman and violent grunts and growls of their keyboardist. Lost Effect had a superb stage presence and clearly wowed the crowd with songs such as “Whispers” and “We Are The Damned”. The only down side to their set was that it didn’t seem long enough.

The headliners, as stated above, were York based power-folk quartet Cryptic Age. Their set began with a metal version of the theme song from “Game Of Thrones”. The vocals were strong, as is to be expected. Cryptic Age interacted brilliantly with the audience in between songs. Some of the highlights of their set include “Homeland”, “Paragons Of War”  and “On The Cold Bare Ground” [all of which can be heard on Cryptic Age’s debut EP “Homeland”]. Their performance of “Bring Down The Sky” was mystifying, almost haunting. Cryptic Age also played some new songs including “Aftermath” and “Maelstrom”. “Aftermath” sounded like a combination of Iron Maiden and Ensiferum due to the very melodic guitar riffs while “Maelstrom” had a very tribal sounding chorus, especially when the crowd sang along.

All in all, the night was certainly an energetic, metal fuelled night with immense performances from three bands. Keep an eye out for these bands as they could soon be on Scuzz or playing at Bloodstock.

Nico Davidson