In 2013, True Thrash Metal Yorkshire lads – Evile released their 4th studio album- ‘Skull’. Having not been able to give this album the proper thrashing that it deserved, due to the departure of ‘Matt’s brother ‘Ol’ (and original member) going off into the big wide world on his lonesome – a hiatus was needed. The hunt was then on for a replacement ‘God of Guitar’ worthy of this league of extraordinary gents in thrash.
A scrupulous search for nothing less than genius would satisfy; ‘Piers Donno-Fuller’ joined the fold and a further postponement of a damn good ear pummelling that the Evile fans crave, is duly taken. However, these lads are professionalism on legs – ‘Piers’ is respectfully allowed time to adjust, bond and become an important element in this tight unit.
Finally, in 2015 the resurrection of Evile for an all out assault began, and after a couple of dates early in the year, the ‘Better Late Than Never’ tour sees the band hit 4 major cities throughout the UK, before heading to Norway.
The night’s merciless slaughter of brain cells began with Scimitar from Belfast, a band that seems totally incapable of failure to impress. The wielding of imitation weapons and the screaming of deathly tones filled the air, and gathered the mass of prepared and well seasoned neck breakers, front and centre. The small venue was quickly engulfed as the Scimitar savage delivery won the crowd over immediately, with the opening self titled belter ‘Scimitar’! Mayhem ensued. The first song the guys ever wrote ‘The Act Of War’ was a crowd pleaser and almost started a mini riot! The ‘Belfastians’ didn’t let up for a second and continued with confidence, even having the balls to fire in brand new song – ‘Unholy Forger’.
Psykosis aptly named… why? Because they are Crazy-Charismatic-Characters! Splitting your sides one minute with entertainment from guitarist ‘Tony Corcoran’ to splitting your ear drums with a vicious pummelling and thrashing the next… first time witnessing these guys was an experience and one that won’t be forgotten any time soon.
The Dublin quartet heavily influenced by their idols Exodus, Slayer, Annihilator and ultimately Evile, bludgeoned the audience with ‘Hunt To Kill’, Rise To Fall’ and ‘Driller Killer’, while ‘Grant’, ‘Tony’ and ‘Jay’ took turns having a wee banter to soften the blows. Drummer ‘Shane Byrne’ has legs and hair that move at 500 miles per hour – simultaneously; executing beats that could knock the stuffing right out of a chicken, while still in the oven.
This hard hitting band of aggressive pleasure seekers continued to rip the Voodoo Lounge a new one, encouraging growth in the mosh pit, with ‘Terror At 3am’ and ‘Toxic Fugitive’, thoroughly ensuring that the crowd had lost any timidity before the dominant and destructive force also known as Evile ,take to the stage.
Evile get up close and ugly, and I do mean up close, with their enthusiastic, energy-blazing loyal and by now sweat-drenched fans. Compact and bijou, the Voodoo lounge was the perfect, intimate venue, to welcome back the boys to finish the teeth grinding moshers off with a fearsome flogging.
The band laid headlong into the entirety of the Skull album; with clear melodies and a downright vulgar showing off of speed changes. Their set was truly epic, opening with head banging classic ‘underworld’ and finishing to chants of the almighty ‘Thrasher’. ‘Matt Drake’ holds his position as front man like a tough guy from a mafia movie, with no sign of relenting as he delivers the anthemic ‘Words Of The Dead’ and firm favourites, ‘Head Of The Demon’, and ‘Enter The Grave’ which are heavenly-rifftastic and wind milling beasties. I’ve never been to a Scottish festival where they go about throwing trees up and down a field (AKA toss the caber) but on the 25th of September I reckon I came pretty close. From the beginning of Evile’s set to the end, hairy bedraggled bodies were being launched on and off the stage and tossed up and down the venue like discarded rag dolls! ‘Matt’ on several occasions had to move to the back of the stage to accommodate the mayhem he was causing.
These guys definitely work hard on stage, Bassist ‘Joel Graham’ with flailing hair works up a sweat running back and forth chugging and swapping places with ‘Piers’ constantly, keeping up the momentum with the siege of bodies that seemed to drip from the rafters! That is until you witness a thrash band that dared to play a balladesque beauty like ‘Tomb’. The crowd welcomed the breather and ‘Piers Donno-Fuller’ stepped up cradling his V on his knee like a damsel he’d just saved, and got lost in the sweet solos.
‘Infected Nations’ and ‘Cult’ are, in the words of Jim Carey “holy testicle Tuesday” tight – as hell! All four members of Evile go at it like rabid dogs. Drummer ‘Ben Carter’ looked like he was about to launch himself into space; head down, his arms and legs were in fast forward.
It’s quite obvious that Evile were born to thrash the hell out of the word itself. Trials and tribulations will come and go, and the true mark of a solid band is the determination and the hard work they put into keeping it together, no matter what crap hits the fan. Evile are walking proof that it can be done if your heart and soul are in it. Big congratulations to ‘Piers Donno-Fuller’ who is still labelled ‘The New Guy’ for fitting in like a hand to a glove, ripping shreds out of every song on the night like he’d been doing that for 20 years. Evileare an amazing and mind blowing experience live. Matt is not shy when it comes to talking and including his audience, as he did in Dublin that night, and the little exchanges and smiles between the band as they wallop out tune after tune, brands and instils faith in the audience that a good time is being had by all.
I cannot wait until their next visit. A very successful resurrection, and the ‘Better Late Than Never Tour’ was indeed worth the wait.
Psykosis set listing
Hunt to kill
Rise to fall#driller killer
Terror at 3am
Sea of beer
Evile Set Listing
Words Of The Day
Enter The Grave
What You Become
New Truths, Old Lies
Head Of The Demon
The Naked Sun