• The Eighth Plague Tour

    Dez 7 2011, 12h27

    Sun 4 Dec – The Eighth Plague Tour

    Well. Where do I begin? Do I begin by belittling Bring Me The Horizon fans and Oli Sykes? Or how happy I was to see tracks from "Unto the Locust" performed live? I think I'll begin with the venue itself and the setlist times.

    Now I'm not one to look into fine details, which is why the ensuing tale is "entirely" my fault. The venue of the NIA in Birmingham seemed to be more than big enough to accommodate fans of all four bands on the tour. Which is the reason I was baffled to find it looking rather empty at the time I arrived with drips and drabs of loyal fans scattered about the arena floor. Ah, when I arrived... After Darkest Hour had played their set and as DevilDriver were just starting their final song "Clouds over California". I was quite upset by this. Not only had I paid £37 to watch 3 of the 4 bands, but I'd missed 2 whole sets. The ticket said 7.00 pm!!! But it did say "doors at 5.30pm" in rather small writing. I don't understand why a gig started that early but, as I said earlier, I take responsibility for why I was late. Besides, I was there to watch Machine Head perform their newest album.

    But first... I had to tolerate Bring Me The Horizon / Comprehend why they were on the Tour. Their set seemed weak and Oli Sykes's attitude throughout the set was rather immature. All my previous scepticisms were confirmed as he pogo'd around the stage spouting off random swears between songs. I have seen this band live previously (not out of choice), and I must say, they seemed to have a lot more energy then and seemed to be a bit more respectable (maybe it was because I was 14 I don't know). Anyhow, as their set dragged on the Machine Head fans became increasingly annoyed and as they took a break between each song the chants of "Machine Fucking Head" drowned out the dubstep/drum 'n' bass that was playing in between songs from the amplifiers. This eventually got to Mr Sykes who mock mumbled "Machine Fucking Head" down the microphone and capped it by insulting a fan by telling him to "Go eat a pie you fat cunt". As this came from a borderline anorexic I did indeed find it a bit rich. He then followed up his insult by going down to said fan and "saying it to your face". Yeah... nearly as annoying as his American-Sheffield forced accent or his less than par "Drop Dead" clothing range. I'll discontinue this rant now as not to offend any loyal fans that might be reading this and to (attempt) defuse any hate comments I might recieve. But you must admit, Oli is a prick. Anyway...

    Machine Head. Here is a band that know how to get a crowd engaged and are tighter than a Catholic Boys arse (before the sodomy from the priests). Their setlist consisted of songs from Unto the Locust and previous albums, ensuring they played at least one song from previous albums including "Bulldozer", "The Blood, The Sweat, The Tears", "Beautiful Mourning" and "Ten Ton Hammer". The set began with the "Sangre Sani" from "I Am Hell" followed up with "Be still and Know". Both were performed relatively well, but Robb was showing some signs of tiredness in his voice. But once his voice was warmed up properly the powerhouse didn't fail to deliver. I thought Dave McClain's drumming was excellent as well as Demell's soloing. Every song was delivered with what you expect from touring veterans such as Machine Head. Massive head banging anthems such as "Imperium" and "Aesthetics Of Hate" got the crowd heavily involved and the ballad "Darkness Within" seemed to engage not only the crowd but also Robb Flynn himself as he delivered the very personal meaning of the song to the crowd. The personal meaning of "Darkness Within" and its ballad style made it look certain to becoming a regular on Machine Head sets replacing "The Burning Red" and possibly even "Descend The Shades Of Night".

    As the set progressed, Rob took some time out to say a big thanks to everyone who was supporting on the tour. There was some comedy provided by this. As Robb announced : "A big shout out to Darkest Hour" the crowd roared in approval. The same happened with DevilDriver. But when Robb asked for the same support for Bring Me The Horizon the small minority cheering were instantly drowned out by ensuing "BOOOOO" 's from the majority of the crowd. At this point, Robb left out a wry smile to sort of say "Ohh c'mon" whilst Adam Duce was laughing quite uncontrollable as if to agree with the sentiment from the crowd. After this pause and the close to the set, fans were left chanting for an encore. Machine Head re-appeared on stage to reward the fans with two songs. The first of which, "Halo" prepared the crowd for the band's classic closer of "Davidian". The pit followed with the crowd giving their final bits of energy to ensure a powerhouse close to a well executed set.

    To summarise, if you haven't gone to see Machine Head yet - What the hell are you thinking? The band is always a joy to watch and the band to crowd interactions are not to be missed. A powerful performance from one of the leading lights of the genre and a show that prove that such a long running band remain loyal to their fans as well as the fans being loyal to them.