Leeds’ very own Beasts have been about for a few years now, and are no less abrasive than they were when they started out. They powered through their setlist with reckless abandon and at high energy too, pulling mostly from their self-titled debut album. It’s effective stuff, but the sparse crowd didn’t really help matters and nobody seems willing to get moving to their racket this early in the evening, despite their enthusiasm. They deserved a bit of moshpit action at least for a more than competent performance.
Despite some technical problems affecting their bassist, fellow Leeds crew End to Empires soon got into their stride and delivered a stunning set by any means. They stepped in for original support act Closure, who were forced to pull out a few weeks prior. They more than made up for that loss with uncompromising hardcore that stirs the crowd a little, although some still seemed to be holding back for the headliners. They finished the set with the rousing ‘Blackties’, featured on their original demo. With a well-received split with Lavotchkin recently released, they ought to be ones to watch in the future. On this form, they can demolish anybody.
The room was a little more packed by the time Black Breath take to the stage, and despite starting a little late, they quickly got the crowd going a little more with openers ‘Black Sin (Spit on the Cross)’ and the crushing ‘I Am Beyond’, designed for solid headbanging throughout. They unleash a ripping version of ‘Escape From Death’ before playing a couple of newer songs, both of which were well received and are great signals for the forthcoming new album. The remainder of the set dipped back mostly into material from ‘Heavy Breathing’, save for ‘Razor to Oblivion’, which entices more people forward as circle pits began to open up. The set closes all too soon with ‘Wewhocannotbenamed‘, its slow build up perfect for unleashing hell once vocalist Neil McAdams roars ‘We have no name!‘. A perfect end to a damn fine set.
Though they were late on stage, one thing you can’t accuse Black Breath of is being tardy in their approach. The performance was all guns blazing. Guitarists E. Wallace and F. Fundler make an impressive team and Wallace in particular has to be one of the finest shredders around. The riffage is precise and devastating in equal measure, backed up by the equally killer rhythm section of Elijah Wells (bass) and J. Byrum (drums). And those McAdams didn’t engage in throwing himself into the crowd as he does on occasion, he was no less vociferous in his delivery.
Off the back of their recent Sonisphere show, it’s a shame there wasn’t as many people out to see Black Breath tonight as you might have expected by now. They’re a live force to be recommended with and with a new album on the way, it’s only a matter of time before they’re playing in bigger venues and wrecking more necks along the way. All in all, though, woe to those who missed out; this was a cracking show in all and hopefully it won’t be too long before Black Breath are back on these shores.
Remaining Tour Dates:
July 16 – Nijmegen, NL @ De Affaire
July 17 – Münster, DE @ Cafe Lorenz
July 18 – Stuttgart, DE @ Club Schocken
July 19 – Hamburg, DE @ Hafenklang
July 20 – Berlin, DE @ Jagerklause
July 22 – Helsinki, FI @ Tuska Open Air Festival
July 24 – Pilsen, CZ @ Fluff Festival
July 26 – Arese, IT @ SGA
July 27 – Bologna, IT @ Altantide
July 28 – Bern, CH @ Dachstock w/ Neurosis