• Avenge Thee + Naime
  • Hunter/Killer
  • Skull Tank
  • Slaughtered
  • Hours To Destroy

Friday 31st May 2013 and I got an invitation to come along and chill out at gig.  One look at the line-up told me straight away that there was not a chance I would chill at this gig.  I had to work it.  Camera in hand off I went to a new venue for me, the Blind Dog in Canterbury, excited for the night ahead.

This started as a 4 band gig but Avenge Thee + Naime were added as a late addition so I knew this would be a lively one, having seen them on a couple of occasions before.  I’ve also seen Hours To Destroy a few times and interviewed Hunter/Killer for the GIGgle Pics Podcast (formerly called Kent Sessions) but there were two new bands on this for me.  Always great to see  new bands and one being a touring band from France, was a great opportunity to see something I’m not likely to again any time soon.

Before I write about the bands I need to say a little something about the venue.  As I mentioned, I’d never been to the Blind Dog before and although not the largest pub in the world, I love this place.  As soon as you walk in it just feels warm and friendly.  Not always the case with an off the beaten track pub, but here you instantly feel at home.  Lovely little backyard garden, the bar is cosy and wood laden and the staff couldn’t make you feel more welcome if they tried.  Very accommodating, from the off making it clear I could stand on furniture etc to get good photo’s and even suggesting I put my equipment behind the bar out of harm’s way of drinks etc.  Never once did they complain with me back and forth behind there, getting in their way.  Highly recommend if you are in Canterbury, popping in for a drink, I shall be going back for sure.

Avenge Thee + Naime – A two drummer, Metal/Experimental band from Canterbury, although the previous couple of times I saw them were specials with 3 drummers.  I reviewed those gigs and will post links to the reviews, I seriously suggest you go and read them, I won’t cover all those things again.  I will be brief here as I’ve comprehensively reviewed them before, but as those were 3 drummer specials you can’t miss them (07.03.13 Beercart Arms Review & 22.03.13 RokanRolla Review).  So this gig may have been a drummer less, there may not have been such a large turnout, but the standard was just the same.  That speaks volumes to me, this band is all about the drama of performance and they do not drop their standards when playing to a smaller audience.  I wondered whether they would struggle in a small venue, as they do require a lot of space but no.  Adam put on his usual quirky show which is both alluring and slightly uncomfortable all at once.  He really is an amazing show man and nothing I have ever seen before, I don’t think I will ever see again either.  The drummers are obviously a large focus and how they never manage to miss a united beat always astounds me.  So frenetic is their performance, not one passes without splinters of wood flying around the venue from the numerous stick breakages.  With the addition of a new guitarist you always wonder if the appeal will still be there.  Ronnie was previously in Artemis Redeemer who I reviewed a little while back, but he slots into this band perfectly, like he was always there!  Awesome, eye popping performance as always, a band I will NEVER tire of watching.

Hunter/Killer – A 4 piece Metal/Thrash Metal/Death Metal band from Herne Bay.  I’d not seen these guys perform before but had interviewed them as I mentioned before for my podcast show (listen to the interview here – lots of fun and all from a beer garden).  Already knowing these are really great guys and liking what they have recorded, I was looking forward to watching them.  Very new on the scene still and this being only their second gig I was slightly apprehensive for them.  The set did start with sound technical issues (none of which was their fault) so I stepped outside for a while until it was sorted.  It’s very easy to judge a band on the first sound you hear and I didn’t want to do that.  Once the issues were addressed I came back to enjoy what they had to offer.   Some hard hitting metal ensued, performed on guitars/bass that had other musicians in the venue drawling.  They certainly look the part.  Yes it is evident that they are still new on the scene but it’s also very evident that they have something here.  I know they struggle with busy lives and fitting in rehearsals can be tough, therefore I also know that listening to what they already have, this is going to really grow!  I certainly wouldn’t have known this was their second gig from listening and watching so all credit guys.  A band to watch for sure!

Skull Tank – A 3 piece … wait for it… Anti-Litter Hardcore Death Sludge band from Ashford/Canterbury.  Just reading their about section on Facebook brought a huge smile to my face, so you guys have seriously got to head over and check them out (click that like button too).  How I have not come across them before I do not know, and how they produce so much noise with only 3 is another enigma.  I have to say from the off that I thought this band were all kinds of awesome, so much so that I didn’t hugely analyse their sound or get too many photo’s.  Why because I remembered I was on a night off and for the first time in a long time, could be found head banging with hair helicoptering everywhere.  I’m still feeling the effects now a couple of days later.  This is hard hitting stuff and I don’t think anyone a fan of this genre could fail to not love it.  A set full of moshing, head banging and general metalness ensued all around, this is a band I need in my life.  Currently having their EP mastered, I’m sitting on the edge of my seat, impatiently tapping my toes and fidgeting waiting for this.  I’ve already asked them for one of the first copies (digital) so I can review it.  There you shall get your technical review, this night was not a night I was meant to review and therefore I didn’t take notes or pay particular attention to all the things I normally would.  Of that I’m really glad, I had the most amazing night and got to appreciate the bands in a way I don’t normally, as a fan.  I am a fan!

Slaughtered – A 4 piece open Death Metal band on tour from France.  Awesome guys and even more awesome band.  We all watched transfixed as these guys started up… this is metal at its best.  Hard hitting, thrashing, riffs, you name it, it’s all in there and they know how to perform it.  These guys totally love what they do and put on a show, real metal heads, head banging along to their own stuff and the photo’s show it.  Another mixed set for me, jumping behind the camera and head banging along myself.  I got so many good crowd shots on this set, everyone went mental, I’d defy you not too.  Hard, dirty metal at its best, deep dark vocals, thrashing pounding drums, oh and the bass… I can still feel the music from these guys pounding through my bones.  Screaming that sent shivers down my spine and hugely appreciative of their crowd which is always good to see. You really need to check these guys out on Facebook as they are still touring and I’m sure will be back again.  If they are, you can be sure I will be getting along to one of their gigs.  These guys are sick (did I really just say that, apparently I did but it’s been a long weekend so just ignore!).

Hours To Destroy – A four piece Experimental Metal band from Canterbury and I’ve seen them a few times now and reviewed them before.  Again I don’t like to cover old ground to much so I’ll post a link to the last review (Club Q Review).  Still fairly new on the scene but boy have these guys come a long way since they first started out.  I saw them at the beginning and its so great to have seen their growth.  A lot of bands start and stay static.  Not these, their sound has developed the more gigs they have done, although their visual performance has always been there.  This night they decided to dress up and the bassist sported a beautiful Pocahontas dress and headdress (after a little persuasion I must admit).  All the fun of the dressing up however did not detract from their performance and they have a slightly different style of metal to most bands.  I know what their influences are but I’m not going to tell you, I urge you to go and see them for yourselves and see if you can work them out.  I would also say what an awesome bunch of guys they are and they actually put this gig on themselves.  Not only fairly new to the scene, they are organising gigs, they are a really hard working band.  Go give their page alike and check them out on a live gig.  Their EP should be available very soon and I’m looking forward to hearing it!

So, not my usual review content wise.  I’ve not really covered many technical points of the bands on this one but then it was a night off and I wasn’t supposed to be reviewing at all.  Truth is, this was such an awesome gig with some amazing bands, that I simply could not let it run with nothing.  Great bands, great guys, great venue, great crowd, one hell of a sore neck and shoulders!

Sarah Quinn – GIGgle Pics

Avenge Thee + Naime – Ear Of The Horse

Find Avenge Thee and Naime on Facebook

Purchase albums here 

Hunter/Killer – Take Me Away

Find Hunter/Killer on Facebook

Find Skull Tank on Facebook

Find Slaughtered on Facebook

Find Hours To Destroy on Facebook 

Photos by Sarah Quinn – GIGgle Pics

As always this is a very small amount of photography taken on the night.  For the full nights photo’s, please go to Facebook, this gig only!

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