Clash Of The Titans – Thundasteel + Hazmat, Atomesquad & Fenrir @ The Lansdowne, 25/8/12

ImageIt can be tricky to try and find a good way to measure one’s enjoyment of a metal gig without sounding completely cliché. Neck-pain seems to be a good indication, because Steel Musik’s Clash of The Titans left me with a neck seemingly made of jelly. If someone asked me to turn my head side-to-side right now, I really couldn’t do it.

Kicking off the festivities was Folk/Thrash five-piece Fenrir. Having recently lost axe-man Jordie Cissell, one of the band’s alumni, Riki Matsuo took the stage this evening to ensure the band were at their strongest. From my understanding, the band is still looking for a permanent replacement – any six-stringers out there looking to join a band?

A little over half-way into the set, the band announced they had hit 500 likes on facebook, and as such built a shield, which they’d be giving to the mightiest mosher in the audience. Head In A Jar guitarist Nick Coady thrashed like a motherfucker and was given the shield, a nurf sword and what looked like a penis painted on his head, but what singer Duncan Therkildsen Jones swore was Thor’s hammer.

ImageOnce the blood had dried and the punters had recovered from Fenrir’s face-melting set, power trio Atomesquad laid waste to the crowd with their unbelievably heavy, thick and tight set of melodic metal. The band’s sound is very eclectic, and seemed to be equal parts Jag Panzer and Queens of The Stone Age. I’m a real sucker for three-pieces that are so god-damn tight, because when there are only three guys, it is much harder to cover up mistakes – Atomesquad seemed to avoid this problem by playing flawlessly from start to finish. Now if only they had a longer set. Hopefully these guys have got a headlining gig coming up soon.

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Hazmat put on, as always, a fantastic show of hard hitting rhythms and indomitable leads. The quartet swayed towards their groovier, heavier numbers tonight, focusing less on their more folk/country influenced songs. In doing so, the band simply prove that they are fitted for any stage, anywhere. Whilst a thrash band at their core, the band is versatile enough to play alongside bands of pretty much every aspect of the metal spectrum. If there ever was a band whose riffs could snap necks, its these guys!

Headliners Thundasteel brought things together nicely with a solid set of no nonsense traditional metal. The band’s banshee-screams and mind-bending solos let the crowd know that the group is more than happy to harken back to the old school of metal, writing and playing anthems fit for the arena. And hey, who doesn’t like a W.A.S.P cover?

The absence of full-time drummer Dean Curl didn’t slow the band down, and although perhaps there could have been a few more headbangers in the audience that night, the true testament to any band is their ability to tear the roof off no matter the size of the crowd. Thundasteel, and the other bands of the evening, all lived up to that.

So, when is Clash of The Titans Pt. II?

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