As promised, please find below a selection of images captured at last weekend’s ‘Kin Hell Fest at Vox/Eiger Studios in Leeds. We weren’t there for every band as you know, but we did catch numerous bands over the Friday and Saturday. They’re not the highest quality but hopefully they capture the awesomeness of this weekend. Just like the fest itself, our approach was very DIY – no fancy lens or expensive kit, just a standard digital camera with a dying battery, and a mobile phone trying to do the job of a professional. Tsk. Anyhoo, enjoy!
@Vox/Eiger Studios, Leeds, 02/05-04/05/2014
The day has finally arrived. ‘Kin Hell Fest 2014 is to start today. The sun in shining, anticipation is full to bursting, and nothing can throw a spanner in the works. But family life so often gets in the way, and then there’s the issue of public transport. In the end, everything conspires for me to only arrive around 4:00pm. As a result, I miss the opening salvo of bands that get this festival properly underway. So apologies to Death Tripper, Ephemeral Foetus, and Pist, all of whom I never made it in time for.
Thankfully, I’m not to miss any of the remaining undercard and, having finally arrived and newly armed with a couple of tins of Guinness, it’s time to watch Necro Deathmort. The London duo play it slightly safe, sticking to the doomier side of their material, rather than the electronic stuff, most of which seems to be washed out by the constant reverberations from their guitars. That said, it is satisfying stuff and ‘Insecto!’ gets a great airing. It feels like the soundtrack to those forever falling dreams/nightmares, such is the sense of helplessness emitted from the vocalists’ yells. From one end of the country to the other, as Fife quartet Iniquitous Savagery bring the weekend’s first dose of slam death metal, chucking in lots of sub-guttural vocals and provoking some silly slam dancing in the pit – no feet being flailed though so it’s all good. Merely lots of invisible oranges and arms being jerked in near-robotic fashion which by the end almost induces a full on pit. As for the band, it’s decent stuff and with time I expect they’ll develop into even more brutal territory.
Haar live up to their name by filling the stage and front floor area with billowing machine smoke before they get going. It feels as though it takes a while before they really get going as well – as a modern proggy black metal band focused on their sound as opposed to showmanship, the occasionally angular riffs don’t feel like a most comfortable fit for this crowd, but eventually it stirs into something more and given a little more time this could well have proven to be a truly enthralling experience. Not such a problem for Evisorax keep it really brief – about 15 minutes, well below their allotted schedule – and it’s at this point that for myself, at least, the spark is lit and the crowd don’t need an invitation to go nuts just as the band’s vocalist paces up and down, jumping into the crowd once or twice, and at one point instructing individuals in the pit ‘kill him! to stir up the raucousness. When new song ‘Locust Breeders’ ends the set, it leaves everyone wanting more, which it seems the band didn’t have tonight. A minor shame, as this band took the day by the scruff of the neck and shook it senseless.
From the fast, to the slow, Oxford quartet Undersmile bring the pace right down with some of the finest doom/drone riffs you’ll likely hear this weekend, led by their two chanteuses whose collective drawls work in tandem to further propel the sense of slow motion sickness. There’s an art to watching this sort of music particularly as it drags on, bar a faster section that comes from nowhere late on, but there’s no way that Undersmile are boring or tiring. It’s an intriguing thirty five minutes.
Technical gremlins are afoot as Ingested prepare, leading to the first delay in the schedule. Fifteen minutes later, they start up and purge on for thirty minutes of ridiculous slam-death action. This time it’s a full on circle pit that gets their slam on and you can tell just how crazy Leeds are for this band.
Pentagram Chile will forever go down as one of those magic moments for this fest in my book. A UK exclusive and if you missed it, you missed out. Anton Reisenegger and crew are bang on form with their ripping old-school death metal. Tomas Lindberg joins them at one point and after slam riffs and drones all day, it’s good to hear a guitar squeal as Anton lets rip through the course of the set with wailing solos sandwiched between some of the finest death metal riffs to have been unleashed from the vault of metal history. 28 years is a long, long time to get your band up and running, but Pentagram are worth the wait and any true metal fan will realise their importance. More so now.
Of course, the band everyone is here to see is Napalm Death, and after a further delay – as all major headliners seem to incur – the biggest name in grind walk on stage and follow the opening ‘Multinational Corporations’ with ‘The Silence is Deafening’, and at that moment I’m as close as I’m willing to get to the stage without being annihilated. This is all top stuff – no barriers, it feels like an old-school show in the sense that bodies are flying everywhere. There was a brief stoppage during ‘Unchallenged Hate’ when Barney noticed someone on the floor and called for first aid. A few minutes later, everything appeared to be OK, and the song appropriately resumed smack in the middle, and all went nuts again. The ‘Utilitarian‘ material gets a good thrashing as ‘Everyday Pox’, ‘The Wolf I Feed’ and ‘Errors in the Signals’ all serve as further incitement to jump around and stage dive. Sadly I can’t stick around much longer than that owing to the last train home. Still, I leave following the end of a brutally urgent ‘Suffer the Children’ and the jog back to the train station as all the more worthwhile having witnessed another show of urgency and rage from the definitive band of the scene’s thirty years of existence.
This means I didn’t catch any of the last three bands either, including Famine, who by the time I’d left had nearly sold out of their limited editions of their new CD, each packaged in a coloured envelope with a different design. I have it on good authority from my long time co-conspirator Mike though that Lock Up were excellent, and that A Storm of Light, a last minute coup for the festival, played out a decent set, although the crowd by now had dropped owing to the early hours.
In the end, it turns out I did get to seeTrudger, and boy am I glad the schedule got moved back a little. Initially I can’t hear the vocals but that’s soon fixed and the lead guy is definitely a gruff growler. But they’ve got some cracking riffs, and the first time they properly drop the doomhammer, wow. They’ve know how to drop it.
Gets Worse are a tight, solid powerviolence band, but really need a bigger crowd or a smaller room to create an atmosphere of any sort, at this time of day at least. Not so much an issue for Wizard’s Beard whose guitarist and vocalist perform almost entirely on the floor in front of the stage. The descriptions of them as redefining heavy aren’t far wrong. The rhythm section – including two bassists – supports the floor duo in laying the thick foundation for their colossal riffage to unfold, the vocalist in particular really getting into it as he paces the floor, rocks out uncontrollably and at one point throttles himself with the mic lead. The last song of their set sees the band yell out loud in unison without the need for a microphone. This is without question – discounting anyone playing a blinder on the Sunday* – one of the sets of the weekend.
It never occurred to me that Keighley heavy metallers Arkham Witch had pulled out before the fest began, so it’s left to Monolithian to follow that up the previous set. The bass/drum duo from Falmouth do this very well, however, making up what they lack in numbers in sheer energy and power, combining sludge and doom riffs with some occasional injections of blackened crust. If you weren’t rocking out to this you obviously weren’t trying hard enough.
Upon re-entering the room it’s not the death metal troupeAcrania setting up, rather Dutch grind two-piece Jesus Cröst. Turns out Acrania pulled out as well, so now the bill is running ahead of schedule. This is my first time seeing Jesus Cröst, and it will be mine, and indeed everyone’s last – as they explain to the crowd, they chose to finish their career as a band in Leeds in tribute to Heresy, who also finished their career in Leeds. And so they thrash away through some of tightest grind going, with stop-start intervals and occasional signals from the drummer to incite a bit more from the crowd, who are getting down to the fast jams coming from the stage. It doesn’t take long for them to complete their set and depart from the stage for good – but wait. Cröst allow themselves an encore, and asking the crowd to give them the biggest circle pit Leeds has ever seen, they get a half decent effort followed by what has to be the first attempt I’ve ever seen of a human pyramid in the middle of a pit. It collapses upon the eighth person climbing atop the foundation, unable to sustain. But truth be told, the anarchy below is a fitting farewell to the duo, who certainly made a few new friends tonight just by being nice. And playing awesome grind. Good luck and adieu.
Whatever issues Grave Miasma had before starting up, seemingly with the cab? I’m no expert. Whatever the case, it eats into the time gained from Acrania’s cancellation so we’re back on schedule by the time they start up. It all seems ultra professional – incense sticks, goat skulls, band members in fake blood – but let’s not mock, these guys are the real deal in old school death metal, shredding riff after riff, in completely fist pumping, chest-beating glory. Pound for pound one of the tightest line-ups this fesyicalThe crowd get right into it, which sadly can’t be said for Deviated Instinct. It’s a relatively sparse crowd for them and there’s no lack of effort on their part, but whatever shenanigans are going on at the front of the pit, you get the feeling not everyone’s paying attention, for which a band so influential deserve better.
There’s still much japing around at the front when Hawk Eyes step up, but they seem to be engaging the crowd more at least, owing to being the most rock friendly act on the bill. They show why they’re one of the best rock acts in the country right now and their singer brings down the mic stand to floor level and moves it around at various points in the song to continue his performance amidst the raucous crowd. Though that act in itself is a prelude to Khuda, who may not be the biggest name on the bill but their name and reputation in these parts meant this was always going to be a special moment, and just as they did in 2011 when they played the original KHF, they set up in the middle of the floor and for one last time for this festival they play an incredible set. Encircled by the crowd, they jam out a fantastic set punctuated by some crunching and occasionally lovely chilled riffs, and tip top drumming, combining in superb fashion at the end with possibly the most beautiful way to close out a set of such intimate surroundings.
Time continues to tick away, however, and in the end Anaal Nathrakh are too long setting up for myself to feel it worth sticking around to judge them purely one one song, and so it was away for my train home I would go. And thus, missing out on Birdflesh, The Day Man Lost, and the not-so-secret band Sloth Hammer. That is where our coverage of proceedings here ends.
Hang on, you ask. Where is Sunday’s coverage? Well, my time is so often divided up between my family, work, running, and indeed this festival at this time of year. Last year it worked fine as my co-conspirator Mike could cover the Saturday last year while I did the Friday and Sunday. This time around, Mike is far more occupied as bassist/vocalist for Wort, bassist for Pist, and a promoter in his own right with Manchester-based CLDH. He was back on the road with Pist on the Saturday, and he always wrote for us voluntarily, and I would never hold him down to ensure a full report here. So that left me, myself and I, and owing to a clash of dates and occasions I could never commit fully to this year’s fest. Hence I appealed for anyone attending if they’d like to voluntarily contribute with a review of Sunday’s coverage that I’d be most grateful for. That has not been forthcoming yet, and so we can only leave it there. I hate for this review to be incomplete, but there are times when my family come above all else and Sunday was one of those days. So if anyone out there has anything to add, please do let us know. We may feature it.
Thanks once again to Paul Priest for making us welcome at this festival, and all involved in the organisation of the festival from promoting to playing and trying to make the thing run like clockwork. And cheers to the fans who like me came out in support of this fest. I will always remember the first moshpit human pyramid! I had a blast watching these bands and Mike I’m sure will say the same about playing the fest and checking out some of the bands too. We’ve been proud to support this festival from its origins as a one-dayer, and we are proud to have been there almost all the way to the end. Because sadly, as a follow up post will detail, this really is it, though we can always hope for its spirit to live on in the future should it be reinvented or reanimated in any way.
We will have a full gallery of photos from the fest during our attendance on Friday and Saturday very soon.
Welcome back to our comprehensive preview of ‘Kin Hell Fest 2014. If Friday’s line-up wasn’t enough for you, Saturday’s bill features no less than 15 bands, ranging from the fastest to the slowest, and indeed spanning the modern era of extremity to its very origins. There should be something for you all here. Doors at 12pm Saturday, first band at 1pm. Go!
Esoteric Youth – 13:00-13:25
Describing themselves as ‘the most evil band out of Manchester since Oasis’, this blackened hardcore crew who have been making inroads into the fulcrum of the UK scene since emerging with their demo in 2012 – their bleak crusty diatribes should prove a wake-up slap in the chops for anyone still recovering from Friday’s madness.
Gets Worse – 13:40-14:05
Another local act, these guys were named in our top 10 short releases for 2013 with ‘Negative’. They have no time for false grinders, pit violence, and indeed as Manowar, and a cracking Scottish blog might say, ‘wimps and posers, leave the hall’!
Wizard’s Beard – 14:20-14:50
Smashing stoner/sludge metallers in the vein of Iron Monkey, Weedeater, etc. who continue to raise the bar in what is deemed ‘heavy’. Blogs and zines have raved about their records ‘Pure Filth’ and ‘Four Tired Undertakers’, so buckle up and get your grooves on. This is about to get heeeeeavy.
Noise Complaint – 15:05-15:30
Cosmopolitan crossover thrashers Noise Complaint are rooted firmly in the UK, bringing together members from the USA, Italy and Brazil. Speed is the name of the game here and you’d be well urged to keep up. These guys are nuts.
Monolithian – 15:45-16:15
This Falmouth duo are creating welcome noise in the UK scene for their bleak and heavy jams that outgun and rise above more populous doom bands. Released a cracking split with hardcore crew Let It Die last year.
Arkham Witch – 16:30-17:00
Keighley-based traditional heavy/doom metallers with anthems of Lovecraftian horror, upholding metal values, mythology and famous comic books characters among others. Cracking retro worship.
Acrania – 17:15-17:45
Brutally pounding death metal from London featuring members of Pathology and Bloodshot Dawn. Brace yourselves – circle pits are coming!
Jesus Cröst – 18:00-18:30
Word is this is going to be the last show ever from the Dutch two-piece, who’ve been ploughing out good-time speedy grind for over 15 years now. With that in mind, let’s give them the ravenous send off they deserve.
Grave Miasma – 18:50-19:25
Fantastic old-school death metal crew from London who released the future underground classic ‘Odori Sepulcrorum’ in 2013. Being hailed as one of the flagbearers of the old-school renaissance of the genre by many leading blogs and zines, it’s time to fall under their spell.
Deviated Instinct – 19:40-20:15
For me, personally, these guys are going to be completely unmissable. Legendary 80’s crust-punks who reactivated in 2007 and put out their first record in 21 years with 2012’s ‘Liberty Crawls to the Sanctuary of Slaves’. This year marks 30 years since their inception, one of the true pioneers of the scene, and fans new and old can expect a raucous and furious show. Expect the pit to go truly nuts at this point.
Hawk Eyes – 20:30-21:10
Mad scientists of rock who incorporate elements of punk, hardcore, electronic and all manner of experimentalism to their sound, bothering mainstream rags and trendies as well as accumulating a rabid following. Hometown show for this lot, guaranteed to be packed out.
Khuda – 21:25-22:05
They’re back! Following their decision to disband early in 2013, Leeds’ post-rockers Khuda have reformed to record a new album and to play KHF, in doing so returning to the festival where they stole the show according to our occasional scribe Mike who witnessed them back in 2011. A truly awesome experience to watch and a swerve in direction from the madness that precedes it.
Anaal Nathrakh – 22:25-23:30
The reigning overlords of British extreme metal arrive in Leeds as Saturday headliners and ready to lay waste to the Vox Warehouse.
Birdflesh – 23:50-00:25
One of the most crackers bands to ever raise hell in grind, Swedish trio Birdflesh bring hell to town in a UK exclusive performance. Expect wild costume, bonkers antics and some classic grindcore from the scene freaks.
The Day Man Lost – 00:40-01:00
Preston grinders The Day Man Lost reformed to play the festival last year and emerged as one of its highlights. These guys are brutal, easily one of the most essential UK grind bands on the scene, and will provide a perfectly crazy end to the Saturday with short sharp blasts of purified rage.
+ We Must Obey officially supporting ‘Kin Hell Fest 2014!
We are very happy to confirm that once again, ‘Kin Hell Fest have added We Must Obey as one of its official supporters/promoters of its festival, after our coverage of the 2013 edition. We’re absolutely honoured, thrilled and suitably stoked to be part of the alumni, as the fest is set to be even bigger than ever before.
A lot has happened though considering our coverage dropped somewhat because of my running/fundraising exploits and generally a lack of access and family issues to contend with that has really got in the way. ‘Kin Hell Fest have indeed added more in the way of details since then and as such, I’ve constructed this mega-post to get you all up to speed with what’s going on.
What we know so far:
The latest additions
Some stonking bands were added to the line-up very recently, including perhaps the biggest name to be drawn to the fest so far, in the name of Birmingham’s harshest extreme metallers Anaal Nathrakh. Also added are Rot in Hell, hardcore merchants featuring members of UK scene legends Voorhees, as well as Dutch groovy grind/powerviolence freaks Jesus Crost, Falmouth doom duo Monolithian, brutal German slammers Pighead, and Derby’s twisted-punk psychos Ephemeral Foetus
We also got a self-confirm for the first time in the fest’s history, as Leeds post-rock duo Khuda, who split last year, confirmed their appearance at the fest in a one-off reunion set!
Just a couple of days ago, the festival organisers outdid themselves again, with the announcement of five more bands, including Swedish comedy grindnuts Birdflesh, playing their first UK show, a one-off exclusive, since 2006, and Leeds riff lords Hawk Eyes. Both play the fest for the first time and diversify the line-up further than ever before. Also making their first appearances are London’s old-school progressive heavy metallers Amulet, and UK-based crossover thrashers Noise Complaint, comprising members from the USA, Brazil and Italy. Finally, returning for seconds this year are one of 2013’s most impressive acts, Preston grinders The Day Man Lost. Man, they crushed the fest on the Sunday this year and by George, its great to have them back.
A pre-show will take place on Friday April 26th, 2014 to serve as a preamble to festivities. This show will take place at Eiger Studios in Leeds, with a line-up to be announced.
The main festival itself will take place on the weekend of Friday May 2nd to Sunday May 4th, 2014, at the Vox venue in Leeds.
27 bands have been announced so far:
Anaal Nathrakh; Wodensthrone; Birdflesh; Hawk Eyes; Deviated Instinct; Ingested; Khuda; Conquest of Steel; Crepitation; Evisorax; Pighead; Necro Deathmort; Jesus Crost; Acrania; Haar; XisforEyes; Amulet; Gets Worse; Noise Complaint; Iniquitous Savagery; Monolithian; The Day Man Lost; Rot In Hell; Wizard’s Beard; Ephemeral Foetus; Famine; Death Tripper
12 more bands still to be announced, plus the pre-show line-up which is set to be an all-dayer, with announcement of 11 bands for that show at the beginning of 2014, bringing the total up to 50 bands!
Early bird tickets for the fest are now on sale at a modest £49 for at least 39 bands. But be quick – they’re limited to 200 and likely to go quickly! Head here to get yours. More tickets will go on sale at a later date, for both the main festival and the pre-show. The fest are also exploring camping and travel options. Keep your eyes and ears on those if you live many miles away from Leeds.
The revamped ‘Kin Hell Fest website is now up and running for 2014. Bigger and better than before, go check it out for the latest news, tickets, band profiles and forum discussion.
Phew, that was exhausting. But rest assured, we aim to pick ourselves back up and support this festival loud and proud, heading into 2014 and beyond. Stay tuned for further updates!
Saturday 27th April
I set off on the walk back from the rooms we stayed at about 11:30 am. A car drives past me and swerves to travel through a large puddle, soaking me from head to toe. Feeling completely broken, we stop at a cafe to regather with a full English breakfast. It doesn’t work, so we make our way back to the venue in obligation and because I didn’t have a gun to shoot myself in the head. Slumped against a wall trying to prop myself up, I reluctantly await an onslaught of death metal. After getting back to the jam rooms the night before I found a corner in which I tried in vain to sleep. I watched the ceiling swim around while four un-intelligible Geordies had a snoring competition and occasionally tried to wake their friend for ketamine. I did not feel good, but one must persevere, and I was safe in the knowledge others were in the same boat.
Never the less, there’s a decent crowd assembled for the first band Masochist, who break the reluctant atmosphere with straight up death metal. It’s nothing new but there’s a good old school element to it and some good groove to get into. The frontman attempts to bring some animation to the gray faced crowd; “turn to the person on your right and shake their hand”, I cautiously eye my neighbour and take a step away, “now is not the time for the affection of strangers, now is the time for the proper observation on personal space”, I’m sure he understood. Masochist finish their assault and although people retreat to various dark corners, the day is starting to look promising with a steady stream of arrivals and the emergence of some yellow heat giving foreign object in the sky.
There is no remorse for those still feeling sensitive as Nu, Pogodi! take to the stage. This band should be predominantly credited first of all for remembering all their lyrics. Mid barrage, they must be going at least 1000 words per second. Utilizing an intense duel vocal barrage, the three piece bash out simplistic crusty riffs while the savaging beast occasionally turns into a very Sabbathian creature, slow and menacing, which mixes it up well. The lyrical content and stance of the band (explained between tracks) is cliché but correctly highlights some misogynistic views within the metal scene. How ironic it would be for the track ‘Fuck my Womb’ to be taken as anything but symbolic.
I walk outside and buy some cans of Stella from the commendably priced bar; gruelling work to get it down, but if there was any hope of feeling reasonable again, the answer’s somewhere at the bottom of one of these things. As I get back to the venue I’m greeted by series of strange electronic loops with bizarrely out of context monologue, seemingly powered by a sonic teapot; it’s time for things to get weird with Sloth Hammer. The band’s faces are all concealed, most wearing balaclavas with the exception of one member, wearing a gory pig mask and overalls. This porcine individual walked out into the crowd holding various pieces of drum kit, which he proceeded to hit as hard as he could with other pieces of unfortunate drum kit, as people around him looked apprehensively and flinched. There’s rattling bass that growls over harsh teapot noise picking up into evil doom rhythms, then accentuated by a double percussive assault, plus our piggy friend. I can honestly say I’ve never been subjected to such an odd musically orientated spectacle, made all the more surreal by the naked drummers who made visual contributions by putting socks on their nobs.
Time to soak in the heavy grooves of the BongCauldron. Massive Iron Monkey style throw downs punch out of more THC stewed lethargies or upbeat tight rock outs. The large hairy man at the front of the stage occasionally bellows about getting pissed and what not. It’s very satisfying and tightly executed, heavy but fun. Everyone in the crowd nods their heads enthusiastically safe in the knowledge that the next riff will be just as fucking catchy and large, I expect that you will see a great deal more of these riff demons in the near future.
Uplifted by the sounds of Bongcauldron and feeling better for guzzling, we’re thrown back into a pit of spikes with Prolefeed. Wide eyed crust punk relentlessly mauls any complacency giving us a good dose of thought crime. Leaning towards old school crust punk Doom vibes, its evidence that melody can work in true aggressive music; a great set and something that’s not done as much at the moment.
After soaking sun to help with the ongoing healing process its back into the cave for Regurgitate Life. The one man effort entails an endless string of breakneck widdlies and “ORGHHH”, to the drum machines obscure timings coming through the PA. Very impressive musicianship with absolute berzerkery, which didn’t honestly come that easy to listen to.
There’s a large crowd assembled for thrash-infused death metallers Cancerous Womb from Scotland, and there’s the first taste of good spirited violence in the crowd that sets precedent for the rest of the night. Chaos is fun and Cancerous Womb have got it as well as quality tracks. Who wouldn’t be charmed by such lovely titles as ‘Torn from Gunt to Cunt’?
Whilst plying myself with vodka outside some malignant noise spills from the stage (This noise belongs to Ishmael – PC). Notes linger with cavernous openings before striking again in discontent, with the precision of a giant cog fitting its next groove in some monolithic despicable machine. The pace is slow, titanicly hellish with harsh screams as a constant and bleak background. Absorbed in negativity, the crowd gaze on and sink into the floor. In a good way, probably.
Flayed Disciple is a tirade of palm muted thrashy death, energetic palm muted riffs with guttural vocals about killing people and jizzing on them, the kind of thing exclusive to this quaint genre. They actually sound to me like a death metal version of early Megadeth.
Rickenbacker and Flares in tow Asomvel wear their influences on their sleeves and keep it light hearted. Bass lines from somewhere in Motörhead’s back catalogue are as punchy and in your face as you’d hope while there’s almost a constant wah wah blues solo coming from the flares in the corner. A great deal of fun to watch and different to the rest of the bill. “We’ve got one more before you dullards get back to your grindcore or whatever it is you listen to now”. ‘Ace of Spades’ was requested for this finale.
“I looked up, and there before me was a Pale Horse, its rider was named Death and Hades was following close behind him”. If death didn’t like Johnny Cash and wanted to announce the arrival of the apocalypse less subtly, Palehorse would be suitable. Ground shaking low end provided by the two bassists is accompanied by the ominous drones of an organ synth, the player of which occasionally looks upwards and screams into a microphone. While the crowd collide viciously with each other a man with a bald spherical head and glasses attempts to keep upright in the middle as he shrieks and nasally preaches anxiety and despair as though from a blasphemous pulpit. An all around ugly experience, with fat rolling vibrations.
Alkerdeel bring harsh, minimalistic and bleak atmospheres with frantic vocalised desperation and the occasional Darkthrone esque groove dropped in. Unfortunately the sound was way off and it was difficult to make out any of the guitar, from outside I initially thought a doom band was on stage, the low end was so prominent. I’d like to catch this lot again for that reason.
I’m a fan of any band that have a track called ‘Can I Have 20p For a Cup of Tea’?, regardless of what they sound like, but as it happens The Afternoon Gentlemen, are one of the best grind bands around. The Leeds based pissheads combine blastery with groove that you’ll likely be spitting blood to. Tonight’s no exception; punk fuelled razor sharp power violence nastiness.
For a short break I decide to take a short walk in the moonlight, take in the beautiful sights, smells and sounds of the Templeworks car parks and have three, yes fucking three double vodkas spilt by various clumsy cunts that polluted my vicinity. During my anguish, the horrific sounds of a man drowning in tar reached my ears, upon further investigation I realised the noise was in fact, Rompeprop. Guttural simplistic grind and a good deal of banter make this band lots of fucking fun in between sustaining injuries and finding yourself on the floor. It must be said that at this point, the night takes a certain nostalgic haze for some reason or another, but I do remember the crowd bouncing to the jiggery like lunatics.
My night ended here with me having to leg it for the train at this point whilst simultaneously trying to keep a large quantity of liquid inside my body and realising I’m horribly unfit, so unfortunately Acoustic Womb, were missed, although I’m assured it was beautiful.
I’ll bet by this point Paul Priest hears people saying thanks in his sleep but it’s certainly deserved with effort gone through to make ‘Kin Hell Fest number II such a success, and creating a proper festival vibe at the well suited Templeworks. Well played all who contributed.
The Serpent Stirs EP
Groningen, Netherlands quartet Ortega have returned with the one-sided picture disc ‘The Serpent Stirs’, their longest track to date. Continuing along the lines of the nautical themes the band have explored previously, this time they attempt to connect it to something deeper, with the song described by the band as ‘a trial of battles with inner demons, which binds us in our mind’. As the title itself suggests, it is a stirring slice of post-sludge/stoner/doom, mixing these elements to create the lurking title-track of this particular release. And indeed, it’s the only track, an 18 minute colossus that ebbs and flows on the waves it creates, and often to very good effect. There’s little in tempo change but there’s a steady groove that pulses throughout the song with some enjoyable riffage to behold. While Ortega aren’t breaking any new ground, this is still an entertaining romp through the psyche worth exploring.
Sadly, all physical forms of ‘The Serpent Stirs’ – vinyl and cassette – are now sold out, with only 100 tapes available and 300 12” vinyls in assorted colours now all gone. This is still available as an insanely cheap download though, and you can stream it below before deciding to cough up at least that one Euro, sterling or whatever currency worth anything these details you can afford.
Buy/download ‘The Serpent Stirs’ here
Stream it below:
If our preview of Friday’s line-up for ‘Kin Hell Fest 2013 got your metal juices flowing, the Saturday will literally have your tongue on the floor. A huge fifteen bands will take to the stage from Saturday afternoon, heading deep into the evening.
Masochist – 12:30-12:55
Local tykes Masochist brought us ‘The Extent of Human Error’ late last year and set out their stall as another fine brutal death metal band, adding grind flourishes to their sound to provide an excellent mix that’s seem them backed to become one of the UK’s top extreme metal acts. Hopefully those of you still recovering from Friday’s antics will oblige these guys early this Saturday morning!
Nu Pogodi! – 13:10-13:35
All female kick-ass hardcore punk/d-beat crew full of political and sociological rage, doing it well in the vein of Discharge, Crass, etc. The definitive soundtrack to humankind plunging itself into further unrest and turmoil. Nu, nu, nu Pogodi!
Sloth Hammer – 13:50-14:15
Organiser Paul Priest’s other band Diascorium will no doubt have dizzied the audience on Friday but it’s with this band that he and his fellow crew will bring things right down to a torturous crawl with their improvised drone goodness. Their original release was entitled ‘Pure Unbounding Misery’, and that’s exactly what to expect, as they expel you into the abyss.
BongCauldron – 14:30-14:55
Winners of the vote on the final band to be announced, home town trio BongCauldron will bring, as their name suggests, a heavy brew of sweet stoner grooves, sludge bombs and doom hammers. Influenced by all things good like Sleep, Weedeater et al, riff out!
Prolefeed – 15:10-15:35
Noisy chaotic hardcore punk in vein of Vitamin X, The Horror, et al, Prolefeed are swift, fast, and raging. Their debut EP ‘Murder Rob for Cult Status’ was released earlier this year and was over and done with inside five minutes. Make no mistake, turn up even slightly late on this band and you’ll miss out on all the fun. If the first two bands don’t wake you up, Prolefeed will.
Regurgitate Life – 15:50-16:20
When Sam from Oblivionized isn’t delivering dizzying riffs of agony with his main band, he can be found here in his solo project Regurgitate Life, successfully managing on his own the power of four or five. Guaranteed to crush you all.
The Atrocity Exhibit – 16:40-17:10
Another band back for seconds following their fantastic performance at the inaugural edition of the festival, The Atrocity Exhibit, and off the back of 2012’s superb ‘What Time the Hidden Death?’ Come on over and get down to some fantastic crossover sludge grind!
Cancerous Womb – 17:25-17:55
Another member of the ‘Split Roast’ Five (including Diascorium and Magpyes) to perform here, this Scottish death metal trio who lavish themselves in the depravity the genre can bring from time to time will certainly bring crushing brutal riffs and blastbeats aplenty, all in poor taste and with precision par excellence.
Ishmael – 18:15-18:45
Wondering where the doom might be? Well look no further, this is where it begins. Plymouth’s Ishmael are quite simply one of the most agonisingly crushing doom bands in the UK right now, if not yet the world, and their debut album ‘Hell Is Empty and All the Devils Are Here’ is one of the most intense albums I can recall in recent history, a prime example of how heavy, bleak and thoroughly punishing the band’s sound is. Fronted by Dani Hawkins, a lady with the most uncompromising of vocal talents, Ishmael are without doubt going to be the most fascinating and evil-sounding bands you’ll hear all weekend.
Flayed Disciple – 19:00-19:30
Death-thrashers Flayed Disciple have made great strides over the last year, seeing their name spread in the wake of their phenomenal debut album ‘Death Hammer’ as well as their videos for ‘The Westboro Massacre’ and the sickening ‘The Shrine of Dahmer’. Another in the new wave of British death metal, their riffs of precision will greet Leeds mid-Saturday and will be sure to open up a great hole in the floor. Rumours that Steve the Zombie will appear on stage are unconfirmed.
Asomvel – 19:45-20:15
‘A dream to some…a nightmare to others’ is their motto, and these classic Yorkshire heavy metallers celebrate their 20 th anniversary this year. Expect old-school riffs and attitude aplenty, fans of Motorhead, Stuka Squadron et al rejoice! Grab your self a beer and bang thy head!
Palehorse – 20:35-21:10
Guitars out, bass in! Veterans of the heavy brew, South London’s Palehorse bring their relative years of experience and their crushing sonic weight to Leeds, promising a fantastic mix of crushing sonic waves, moments of relative serenity, steeped in sludge and sheer audible force.
Alkerdeel – 21:25-22:05
Belgian mob Alkerdeel are making the short trip over the Channel for ‘Kin Hell Fest, bringing with them raw, agonizing, black sludgy drone/doom, shrouded in darkness and misery. One of the cruellest crawls of the weekend.
The Afternoon Gentlemen – 22:25-22:55
The self-styled kingpins of ‘power joogle pogger violence’, Leeds’ very own The Afternoon Gentlemen return to ‘KHF to once again for the crowd to get wasted to before TAG lay Leeds to waste, having done so to venues across Europe and America for the last couple of years. This is what your booze was made for.
Headlining the second night by special invitation are the Dutch goregrind group Rompeprop. With below-guttural vocals, low-end riffs and subject matter not for the faint of heart or easily offended, Rompeprop are one of the heaviest bands who will play this weekend, but not without a fun element. Never ones to take themselves seriously, one look at their performance at Obscene Extreme Festival 2010 will show the band are happy to bring the party to you, and hopefully the ‘Kin Hell Fest will party just as hard as the Czechs did that day!
Acoustic Womb – 00:15-00:30
And after all that gonzoid madness, Cancerous Womb will reveal a more sensitive side as their acoustic alter egos Acoustic Womb. Lighters in the air for ‘Torn From Gunt to Cunt’ Anyone?
We’ll return tomorrow with the final part of this year’s preview, going through Sunday’s also amazing cast.
Supported by Terzij de Horde, Burial + Wode
In the dark intertwining back alleys of the Northern Quarter its safe to say I’ve lost faith in locating my destination. “I’ve fucking been to the place twice before”, it doesn’t help, the area is completely non descript. Luckily, before too long a man apparently sat in the middle of an alley sees our predicament and points at the venue about 5 feet away. How the hell would you know it’s here? No sign or acknowledgment of existence beyond a black door in a black alley of a side street. The Kraak Gallery is already fairly busy with a mix of people, ranging from trendy looking folk with hair from the 40’s and shirts that would make better curtains to a man who appears to have lost his way whilst hunting large game. The roof is draped with cargo netting and a ram’s skull sits on top of the drum kit, looking off the currently vacant stage as people stand idly or sit on the strategically placed couches waiting for the first band WODE.
The four piece from Manchester have an unrefined and elemental sound that fits well with the different aspects of their sound. Bastardized punk noise breaks up bleak and hypnotic interludes, for a minute or so at a time lulling, droning riffs with cold melodies and almost lethargic rhythms in the vein of Drudkh or Walknut absorb your consciousness, before being snapped back to the living with a more obnoxious kick of old school black metal punk fueled aggression, vocals drowned in filth and reverb. The crowd look transfixed for the entire set ands it’s apparent why. Despite not being around all that long or being very vocal about their goings on, (online at least) the band seem to have people interested. My only previous experience of the band was a gig at the Ducey Bridge, where it was so loud I thought I could feel the end of my spinal column wobbling my brain, and the only thing to be heard was a dull feedback that seemed to be coming from my chest. I’m glad to say with the band playing at sonic levels compatible with humans, they played a high quality set with a freshness that will hopefully continue vitalizing the UK black metal scene.
Veterans of the underground Burial are next to shake things up, injecting a significant amount of brutality to the night. Shredded minor chords, vaguely human twisted vocals and a relentless percussive assault paint a picture of morbid terror before being wrenched into heavy, ominous stabbing groove, that could pulp flesh into snotty little pieces of quivering meat, dragging you through the audio equivalent of murder on acid. That doesn’t sound very nice you might think, well, it isn’t, and that’s what’s nice about it.
A guilty pleasure of watching the ‘orrible trio was some trendy looking fellow that shouldn’t have bothered pretending to be interested in music for the night getting up on stage, unaware that his obnoxious and foolish behavior would see him ejected from it, quite violently. He hit the floor in front of the crowd with all the dignity of our scaly sea dwelling brothers, he got himself up, feigned aggression and skulked away quietly, realizing his existence was that of a fashionably dressed, well groomed exterior.
Although not attracting quite as much attention as some of the other bands, Burial’s loyal base of ferocity loving blackened death nuts were ever present, as is going to be the case with a gig like this in Manchester. The band’s material from their new album stood out as exceptionally grim and viscous in the overall destruction of their set. Purchase it and be smite into hell fire.
Terzij De Horde are a discordant bunch from Holland, with a style that would struggle to be any more oppressive. The negativity in their noise, projected through tangible distortion, is a mix of doom paced misery that plods, portentous, into frantic deranged riffing. When the band changes the pace there’s a strong punk influence but this doesn’t lose the apocalyptic vibe that the slower section’s builds. The vocals are all out continuous savagery for the entirety. The structures of the songs are similar in the way they mix between looming misery and then back into chaos, projecting the image of a joyless utopia that has an increasing number of people absorbed.
The band close with a song in tribute to H.P Lovecraft and as a introduction to The Great Old Ones, the band whom they’ve toured with. The bands compliment each other’s styles without treading on each other, Terzij being on the rougher, nastier side of things.
The Great Old Ones collect themselves on stage and play a simple introduction involving one guitar and effect that would be fitting for a decent, downwards, through endless pitch black narrow stairwells, into the weird and horrifying world of H.P Lovecraft. Despite there being three guitars in total when they kick in, the sound is clear and precise in timing. The layers are well utilized, frequently playing three different things at once. This doesn’t complicate the sound though, there’s no competing or over complicating needlessly with melodies and leads, the only crowding being in a physical sense on stage, maybe dodging the odd headstock. The band play music that building up, transcends to a powerful level using the layers of guitar and crashing drums; the crescendo comes and then fades away to minimalist foreboding notes and chords rung out into nothing. The style, although relevant of black metal, probably owes more to “post” styles, which is still too much of a generalization for the dynamics of the band. The dual attack of vocals are tortured rasps that fit well and emphasize the music; unfortunately lyrically I’m lost, but The Great Old Ones capture an atmosphere that could easily represent one of Lovecraft’s desolate and ancient cities, harboring all sorts of mind-fucking weirdness and malignancy.
The shouts for one more at the end of the night spoke for the quality of the band and the night in general at a great little venue that should be better used. People left happy and drunk, spilling across the various surrounding bars while I was forced to consider a far more evil prospect, waking at 7.30 to go to work after two weeks off, a terrible end to an awesome night.
Originally published for ‘CLDH’.Check them out here
Click here to view photos from the night (Facebook)
Limited early bird tickets for next April’s ‘Kin Hell Fest 2 in Leeds are now available, with 3-day and single day tickets available at a slightly lower price for a limited time only. Day splits have not yet been announced, although rising English black metallers Winterfylleth will headline on Friday 26th, with Dutch gore grind party crew Rompeprop headlining Saturday 27th. Head to the official ‘Kin Hell Fest site now to book your spot at the extreme fest of 2013!
It’s barely been a week since the sequel to the original ‘Kin Hell Fest in Leeds was announced, and already the festival has secured the first eleven bands for its new three-day format!
So without further ado, here they are:
Yes yes yes! That flyer does confirm shithot death-thrashers Flayed Disciple, drone overlords Bong, avant-garde black metallers A Forest of Stars and some ripping death metal filth from Cancerous Womb are just a few of the names confirmed to tear up The Well! Also announced, returning from last year’s fest are The Atrocity Exhibit and Foetal Juice, who smashed the fest a new one last year, and more new names in the form of Masochist and Nu Pogodi.
And for the first time, the fest is bringing over Euro acts for the first time, in the shape of Belgium’s Alkerdeel & A Den of Robbers, plus Holland’s party grind legends Rompeprop, whose name is most prominent on the above flyer and with good reason too! Wow, this is shaping up very nicely indeed!
Ticket prices will be announced shortly. The fest will run from 7pm-midnight on the Friday, from 12pm to midnight on the Saturday, and from 1-9pm on the Sunday, allowing plenty of time for that last train home.
The official ‘Kin Hell Fest site has all the videos and info you need on the bands, so get over there now and prepare yourself for one of 2013’s top extreme parties!