The best way to keep warm last night (at minus no need for this degrees) was always going to be in the CLUTCH moshpit, I was only semi-brave, standing just to the side stealing some residual heat, a stray shove and the occasional beer shower, man that crowd was epic though. I’ve got to give a massive shout out to the support bands too, TIGERCUB from Brighton (saw them last year supporting ROYAL BLOOD, fantastic) and GREEN LUNG from London who were new to me but absolutely marvellous, didn’t know quite what to expect from a psychedelic Satanic metal band but I was very pleasantly surprised, a touch of medieval keyboarding and guitar, heavy drumming and outstanding vocals, they certainly have gained a new fan.
CLUTCH were undoubtedly phenomenal, Neils voice must have had some sort of magic spell cast upon it to sound so fierce for a full tour (really hope I haven’t just jinxed him). Although we all enjoyed those LIVE FROM THE DOOM SALOON streams during covid, nothing beats seeing this band on stage doing what they were born to do, entertaining their loyal fans and witnessing them singing every line to every song back at them. Apart from the tracks on their latest album, SUNRISE ON SLAUGHTER BEACH, it was anyone’s guess which songs they were going to hear at the gig because the setlist has changed for every night, definitely covering the substantial back catalogue they have amassed since 1991.
I was half and half, having only started listening to them 4 years ago, but Im pretty sure their die hard fans were more than happy with last night’s track choices. EARTH ROCKER was the first I was able to fully sing along too, well kind of, who else can make those strange wobbly noises like Neil??
RATS and X-RAY VISIONS were the beginning of the moshing and it only increased throughout the night, no ballads at this gig!! Former OPETH keyboardist PER WIBERG joined Neil, Jean-Paul (drums) ,Tim (guitar) and Dan (bass) on the remaining tracks from BURNING BEARD onwards and the main set ended with SPACEGRASS, a totally trippy head banger of a track which I was made up to hear live.
Neil Fallon has to be one of the best frontmen around, oodles of personality and not alot of chat, which is good, anything he does say is purely for amusement, last night he commented on how he loved the venue because he liked hanging around the student union scaring people. It is a great venue though, the staff are friendly and the sound quality and lighting is spot on, never had any issues there.
The encore wait was one of the longest I’ve known but was 100% worth it. 10001110101, ELECTRIC WORRY and THE FACE made my night, I would have liked THE REGULATOR too but I guess I’ll just have to wait ’til the next time I see them. Anyway if you haven’t heard the new album then do so and if you’ve never seen them live then definitely do so.!!
Words by Joanne Marsland
Photos by Philip Goddard
RED ALERT (BOSS METAL ZONE)
THE MOB GOES WILD
SEA OF DESTRUCTION
MICE AND GODS
THREE GOLDEN HORNS
(NOTES FROM THE TRIAL OF) LA CURANDERA