Once again we are back on the sacred ground that is Voodoo Belfast for the final heat in this years competition. Five bands will go head to head with three progressing to the semis. Not only do we have five bands this evening, we have five stellar bands this evening that each will make their own mark on tonight’s display.
First up are Belfast band Towers, an atmospheric, Progressive-Rock outfit that aren’t just here to make up the numbers. Formed in 2014 they have a wealth of experience to bring to the competition and their own style that will be appreciated by the M2TM faithful. Each track gets an emotive and thought provoking sample as an opener, and beyond it a hard-hitting angst ridden performance that is delivered with passion and aggression to take the breath away. Banging tunes with both bass guitarist and guitarist / vocalist sharing duties across the opening track. The guys put on a set that was well balanced and intriguing throughout, an intense savage performance of really well thought out songs perfectly executed. https://www.facebook.com/TowersBelfast/
An unknown quantity Nomadus take the stage and within 15 seconds of the opening track you know shit just got real. Hefty slamming riffs and savage drums make for a seriously engaging set, right from the off these guys are going down well with the crowd. As heavy a sound as I’ve heard thus far in the competition Nomadus are a tight outfit with an animal behind the skins, brutal double bass pummels the room as they thrash their way across a gargantuan sounding set. Great musicianship all round, the first two bands have thrown down the gauntlet and it’s going to take a while to catch our breaths. https://www.facebook.com/nomadusni/
Belfast based Erosion take the middle slot of tonight’s show, with a more old school vibe fused with a little Prog-Rock they are a talented outfit that know how to throw together a banging set. Filled with peaks and valleys they have a seriously hefty sound with each track showcasing their unique sound. With vocalist Mark Stewart tied behind the drums, for me you loose that connection up front and centre on stage with so many of the other bands offering intense front men & women, would that reflect on the result. Time would tell, but regardless of that, Erosion are an experienced outfit that deliver on the night and throw their weight into the mix.
Returning to the competition once again for 2019, Ketos are one seriously tight outfit. With a new album First Strike dropping May 4th the guys are re-energised and ready to make their mark once again on M2TM. As always they provide a seriously intense performance, from front to back their energy is infectious and they thrash across and savage and beautifully executed set which included their latest offering ‘Harmacist’.
As always Ketos deliver and it was needed tonight with such a strong line-up to compete against, could 2019 be their year?
Closing tonight’s proceedings are County Down outfit The Crux, right from the off you can tell these guys are one seriously tight band, solid from front to back they can start and stop on a dime and do many times across the set. Gnarly riffs meshed with a fine vocal display means these guys are in it to win it. They may be last on the bill but immediately grab your attention with a finely tuned set, hefty yet poised, and with their debut album Immersed Somewhere Divine dropping next Friday, they have an arsenal on tracks to drive home to the Belfast crowd.
A seriously killer performance by all involved this evening, and yet again a fine evening hosted by both James Loveday / The Distortion Project and Voodoo Belfast.
Alas only three bands would progress and out of tonight’s line up Towers, Nomadus and Ketos progress to the semi-finals. Well done to all involved and congratulations to the three who made it out of the fire.
The first semi takes place on March 29th once again at Voodoo Belfast and it’s gonna be epic!
Photography : #flashartmark / @flashartmark / Mark McGrogan Photography