So this gig has been on the calendar for a long time, originally bookmarked for 2021 I believe and for obvious reasons, shizzle went sideways, but these big hitters have been on everyone’s lips since! Will they, won’t they, well they will, and they are tonight! at the infamous Ulster Hall! A sold-out gig for quite some time now, a handful of production tickets were released and a scramble ensued to secure the last of these In demand beauties.
Three killer bands to soak up tonight and first up, Employed To Serve, all the way from Woking, England, these heavyweights aren’t just here to make up the numbers. Instead, they bring a wall of distortion raining down on the Belfast crowd to send shivers down their spines. Brutality as its finest, Employed To Serve deliver a barrage of audible abuse to make more than their mark on tonight’s event, but to make it an unforgettable experience! A powerful performance fronted by the stellar Justine Jones on vocals, her guttural growls shake the foundation of this historic building to its core and much like the many bands who have played here before, will be forever ingrained in its DNA. Such a heavy tight sound these guys absolutely nailed it and as they exited the stage to rapturous applause can be more than confident that it was mission accomplished this evening.
EMPLOYED TO SERVE ARE:
Justine Jones — Vocals
Sammy Urwin — Guitar + vocals
David Porter — Guitar
Nathan Pryor — Bass
Casey McHale — Drums
Next up the mighty Alien Weaponry all the way from New Zealand, these guys hit the scene what feels like a lifetime ago, like a heavyweight blow to the head. It feels like they have been around forever but it was only a few years ago since I last saw them at Bloodstock Festival. That day they were one of the standout bands, ripping apart the Sophie Lancaster Stage! These lads arrived in their teens taking the metal world by storm, with a sound and technical ability well beyond their years, they were a breath of fresh air, encompassing their native tongue with their own brand of metal, it was one of the most powerful moments in modern metal in a long time and it is such a pleasure to have them on our shores. Their performance this evening is nothing short of breathtaking, the sound that this three-piece put out is a thing of absolute beauty! It is possibly why they can maintain such a monstrous sound live yet still keep it as tight as they do, if you have not caught these guys live and they are coming to a town or city near you do it! And thank me after! Alien Weaponry delivered a savage performance, one of the best I’ve seen in a while and just as I remember, these guys just take it all in their stride, doing what they love, bringing it to the masses all the way from their native New Zeland to the shores of Ireland and beyond in such a majestic fashion. The crowd in the middle of the floor were having an absolute rager, living their best lives at every command of Alien Weaponry, a circle pit exploded, bodies flying everywhere, Belfast consumed by the fury of the riffage being tossed out at whim from the stage. An unbelievable unique sound they create, an incredible performance! this is what metal is all about!
ALIEN WEAPONRY is:
Henry Te Reiwhati de Jong – Drums, Backing vocals
Lewis Raharuhi de Jong – Guitars, Lead vocals
Tūranga Porowini Morgan-Edmonds – Backing vocals & guitar on “Unforgiving”
ALIEN WEAPONRY online:
But the time has come, the mighty Gojira are back in Belfast once again, it has been quite a few years and this band has grown exponentially in stature since we last crossed paths, bring it on.
Gojira, the French modern metal band, is considered one of the most electrifying and captivating live entities in the heavy metal scene. With a blend of technical prowess, relentless energy, and raw emotion, the band has garnered a massive following and has become one of the most sought-after live acts in the world.
As a first-time attendee of a Gojira concert in a more intimate setting, I was struck by the sheer power of their live performance. From the moment they took the stage at The Ulster Hall in Belfast, it was clear that they were not just playing music, but rather, they were feeding the audience with a visceral and cathartic experience. The crowd’s energy was palpable, with fans eagerly awaiting each thunderous note and every crushing riff.
Gojira’s music is immediately recognizable by its blend of brutal, heavy riffs, complex drumming, and soaring melodies. Their live performance takes this to the next level, as they unleash their full fury on stage. The band’s drummer, Mario Duplantier, is a veritable powerhouse, hitting his drums with incredible force and precision, while the guitar work of brothers-in-arms Joe Duplantier and Christian Andreu is equally impressive. The duo’s seamless interplay and their intricate solos are a testament to the technical mastery of their instruments.
But what distinguishes Gojira from other metal bands is their unique ability to infuse their music with raw emotion. This is evident in the passionate vocals of frontman Joe Duplantier, who brings a soulful intensity to his performance. His lyrics often focused on environmentalism and social justice, add an extra layer of meaning and purpose to the band’s music. As a result, their live shows become much more than just a display of musical virtuosity; they are an expression of the band’s beliefs and a rallying cry for their fans.
The Ulster Hall in Belfast is a historic venue, steeped in musical tradition, and it proved to be the perfect setting for a Gojira concert. The acoustics of the hall were superb, allowing this behemoth performance to shine and reverberate throughout the venue. The band was in top form, delivering an electrifying performance that had the crowd euphoric. The lighting and visuals, adding to the overall sensory experience of the show whilst the lunatics let loose in the middle of the floor moshing to their heart’s content, the energy had been building up for some time as Belfast patiently waited for Gojira’s return and they did not fail to deliver.
One of the highlights of the concert was when Gojira played “L’Enfant Sauvage,” one of their most iconic tracks. The song is an epic, multi-layered masterpiece that showcases the band’s musical prowess and storytelling ability. As they played, the crowd was in a state of disbelief, mesmerized by the sheer power and beauty of the performance. The song builds to a climax, with Joe Duplantier delivering a gut-wrenching scream that left the audience speechless.
Another standout moment of the concert was when the band played “The Heaviest Matter of the Universe.” With its thundering drums and crushing riffs, this track is a fan favourite and always a crowd-pleaser. As they played, the crowd was in a state of frenzy, with fans moshing and headbanging like their lives depended on it. The band’s energy was contagious, and the audience was completely in sync both feeding off each other as each track passed.
Gojira is a band that is truly unmatched in its live performance. Their music is a force of nature, and their live shows are a testament to their musical prowess and their passion for their craft. I was blown away by their energy, emotion, and technical proficiency all delivered with such brutal force, chaos and beauty in one single stroke.
Gojira’s live performance at The Ulster Hall in Belfast was truly a special experience. The band’s music is truly a work of art, and their live performance brought that art to life in a way that was truly unforgettable. The UK is up next, get ready for it.
UK & Irish dates are as follows:
Sat 11th Feb – DUBLIN National Stadium
Sun 12th Feb – BELFAST Ulster Hall
Tue 14th Feb – NEWCASTLE City Hall
Wed 15th Feb – GLASGOW O2 Academy
Fri 17th Feb – CARDIFF Motorpoint Arena
Sun 19th Feb – MANCHESTER O2 Victoria Warehouse
Tue 21st Feb – NOTTINGHAM Motorpoint Arena
Wed 22nd Feb – LONDON Alexandra Palace
For tickets and for more information on Gojira’s live schedule visit www.gojira-music.com.