The Biker Rock Radio Gig of the Month

Thursday 1st of November 2012

The Green Baize, Weston Super Mare.



It was another wild wet night in Weston when I ventured forth into the brutal cold for another gig at the Green Baize, a place that is really starting to become a place of love for me. I don’t know about you, but I had been told that there was a metal gig in a Snooker club, I would have been sceptical, but yet for as much as the Green Baize should not work, it is in fact fantastic. You cannot fault the place, as you climb the stairs to the hall, it has that old cinema feel to it and then as you enter the hall, it is long, and spacious and ever so slightly unkempt in a reassuring kind of way. It is true, I have really grown to love the Green Baize and that they have chosen to support the Weston Rock and Metal scene is just more credit to them. So check them out, if you want to hold a gig in Weston, give them a chance because you really wont be disappointed.


The bands I went to see last night were as follows.


Ø     Book of Job


Ø     Made to Waste


Ø     Cambion


As a reviewer it is always hard to enter a venue, meet people and have a chat, after all, I am not there to just enjoy what I see, I am there to critically review the bands on stage. So when I meet young bands who want a great review, it can be hard, after all, what do I do if they are utterly terrible? At this gig, I had no such worries. From the start, every band that played was more than impressive.

Book of Job


From appearances, this band is fragile, young and sweet looking. As they strike their first note though, the sound that pours from the stage is mature, angry and violent. They appear to me to play the sort of super angry Hardcore Punk Metal Cross over, reminding me slightly of No Means No, but it is only a vague reference, but not by any means a poor comparison. As the music washed over me with the force of a storm surge, it was melodic, powerful and intensely angry. The lead vocalist does not look like he has the physicality to produce a sound as big as he does, yet the backing vocals are by contrast soothing and beautiful. The sound shredding from the stage was full of energy, they blasted along with a slick mechanised ease that was not only impressive but damn emotive. The signs of a well practiced, aggressive band are all there and then it struck me who that singer reminded me of. Do you remember Henry Rollins when he was young, when he was really fucking angry, well this kid is just that, he is like Henry at his most vitriolic and he has taken that influence and added to it, making his mark on music that will not be quickly forgotten, to be honest, I loved him for it. The rest of the band are just as slick and professional, this is not wedding band, this is a face ripping, spine shattering metal band and it was such a shame that the crowd that came to see them was so small. If you did not come to the Green Baize last night, you really missed out. So come of people, get off your arses and get supporting your local metal scene, Slayer are not going to last forever and who is going to knock them off their throne?

Book of Job Book of Job

Made to Waste


The first time I saw Made to Waste, they really impressed me. The arrogance of the lead singer who knows that his band is fucking awesome is not unjust. He stands there and he knows that the crowd that have slowly trickled in are there to worship him and it is no bad thing because under that arrogance of a Rock legend in the making, there is a deep current of calm and an absolute love of music that is sadly missing from many of the big bands these days. If there was anyone who could make an assault on the throne of metal that Slayer sits upon, fat and lazy, it would be this band. Yet Made to Waste have something that makes them unique, with that arrogance there is humanity and a great sense of humour. If that kid grows tired of music, the performing arts of comedy acting would surely welcome him, so self assured is his performance. As if to prove this, as the bassist tuned up, he was heckled not by the crowd, but by his own lead singer. It was hard not to laugh, but when he started to involve the crowd, the fight was lost and I gave into laughter. With any other metal band, such an act against one of their own could have led to a fight, but not with these guys, they know that the impish devilment of the lead singer is what also gives them so much energy.


The first song almost tore my face off, the noise coming from the stage was of a thousand cities being devastated at once, a gentle introduction led them into a blast beat howling chaos of elegant death metal. Yet with the aural violence came a melodic softness that soothed while flaying the inside of my ears. With impeccable guitar solos and vocals that could strip continents from planets, this band are going to make it big one day very soon. The warmth coming from the stage was aimed right into the crowd that they love, these lads are professional showmen and it really does shine through just how hard they have worked on making a sound that is all theirs.


Then came a cover version that once again showed that this band do not take the music they play too seriously. Electric Six’s Gay Bar, thrashed out in a death metal style is not only hilariously funny, but also thoroughly enjoyable. As the song ends, the lead singer divulged the small fact that due to their guitarist breaking a string, the crowd being asked to sing was to cover a missing solo, the joke being on us that we had not even noticed. Good one lads, you got fair and square.


There is one question that I want to ask though, how can music this brutal also be this much fun? I keep coming back to the Slayer comparison because Slayer are band very close to my heart, but you never hear the them play with this much passion. That throne is looking decidedly unsafe. The humour in Made to Waste is apparent through out the set, this band are charismatic and worthy of the adoration. Yet, the sudden admission from the lead singer that his act of  buying an acoustic guitar and was learning to really sing did not, he claimed, impress any “Chicks”, showed a delicate fragility to them. It is hard not to love Made to Waste. The irony though was that the crowd that had come to see this band was clearly over ninety percent young pretty women. I felt like an ancient wizened hag in a sea of beauty, thankfully the shadows of the Green Baize provide plenty of cover.


Made to Waste Made to Waste



The head liners to the show were Cambion, a well rehearsed, aesthetically beautiful band from Exeter. The soft name is not to be misunderstood, because this band has it its heart a brutal raw sound that impresses almost as much as it moves your soul. I really want you to check this band because quietly and gently they are creeping along blasting violently onto stage and performing the sort of mesmerising metal that is mature, textured and layered with meaning. They have a soulful quality that is usually found in bands who are considerably older and even the stage had an atmosphere that can make you weep joyful tears of loss.


I spoke to their manager while the lads were preparing to start their set and she is a small, powerful woman and deeply passionate about the band she not only managed but really cared for. Seeing such passion in the person who books their gigs and promotes them so proudly can be misleading though. Just because one person loves them, does not mean that they are any good. Yet when that band started their set, I was reassured almost immediately of just how cold and bleak existence really is. Their sound is dark, with hints of death and even post black metal and it is built upon a solid base. Even after one mournful song, I was addicted to Cambion.


The music is at times pummeling, blasting along with intensity and rage before dropping into gentleness and soothing heart wrenching melody. Musically they are elegant, well practiced and they perform with integrity, a trait that is going to make you love them. After the manic fun of Made to Waste, this is a soothing balm to the scars that life inflicts. More than impressive. This is music to get lost in, the main vocalist is part brutal demon, part angelic choir, his voice has a depth and emotion that is limitless it seems and sharing this, almost intimate personal, moment with them ensured that I did not want to miss a single second of their performance.


I found that I had stopped watching at one point because I was truly lost in the soundscape that they created, I could imagine that is what drowning feels like once the pain of it has passed, a claustrophobic crushing that sucks you down to the depths. The guitars were absolutely crushing, the drums were merciless, this was no mere gig. This was a message, a painful quest into the richness of metal played so well as to induce tears. It was a real surprise to find such an act and to walk away from a gig still feeling the resonance of a band is a wonderful feeling indeed. I felt like I had dropped down a deep velvet abyss and at the bottom found some light.


If you asked me if there was only one band from any of the bands that I seen this last few months that I would recommend to you, I would struggle to do so because I have been privileged enough to seen some truly awesome talent. However, Cambion have more than impressed me with their rich resonance, the elegant soundscape and the pure bleak emotion  that drips blood like from the stage. Seriously, go and check them out, you can find them on line at or check them out on Facebook. Currently they have a new EP out called Virus and to be honest, it is excellent, if you can only buy one album this year, make it this one.


Cambion Cambion

So it was with a great deal of thanks to The Green Baize for once again providing an evening of fantastic metal bands, but I am left with one troubling question. Where were you, the fans of metal? The room at the Green Baize has the space to hold easily enough people to make every band there feel loved and yet only a handful of dedicated people showed up to this awesome gig. I was deeply saddened when I was told by the tour manager, that the tour that Cambion and Book of Job are currently on, had venues cancel on them because they don’t value Metal Bands anymore. What the fuck!? The scene is made up bands like these guys giving it every ounce of passion that they contain and playing to a venue that has barely enough people inside to cover the cost of the lighting will see our precious gigs closed down. The weather last night was cold, wet and miserable, but inside it was warm, dark and safe. If we do not support new bands, if we don’t give them the credit they are due, bands like Metallica or Slayer will continue to sit on the metal thrones, growing fat from the proceeds of albums that all sound alike and yet I say this a dedicated metal fan. With out new input pushing boundaries, even our beloved Metal Gods can and will become stagnant.


So thank you to the Green Baize for being brave enough to put on shows like this and thank you to every band that participated and an extra big thank you to Nester the Soundman, who always manages to make every band sound superb, the guy is a genius. The show was blinding and to those of you who stayed at home, watching TV, you let Simon Cowel win with his X-factor bollocks. When the music industry is finally filled with nothing but auto tuned Celine Dionne clones and when no one will book a metal band again, you will have no one to blame but your selves. That may sound preachy, but I have been seeing it happen for a while now. Who then will replace the Dinosaurs of Metal when they too die out?

  Nester the Soundman