Revelations // Divine Hatred // Ego // Chained Up // Torn Between // Live Review // The Corporation // Sheffield
A rainy Friday evening hailed the start of one of the most insane metal gigs I’ve covered in my time as a gig photographer. Whilst the poster has Revelations, a 5-piece Chesterfield band, as the headliner, today felt much more like a metal night or small festival environment. 5 bands made up the total of tonight’s gig (all locally/not too far from Sheffield).
I was dubious about how busy this event would be, but as soon as doors opened the room was almost at capacity. Hopefully, one band member mentioned, it will encourage the venue to host another similar event. No doubt in my mind that they would after tonight’s experience.
The first band to take the stage was Torn Between. Within moments of this band starting up their guitar riffs, already there were moshers windmilling in the pit. The vocalist of the band had great fry screams that tore throughout the room. The guitarist would come in with clean and harsh backing vocals to support the main singer. The singer introduced each song along with the meanings behind it and it really helped to get the audience to relate to what they sang about.
The crowd was only just getting warmed up during this set. Already you have people kicking and thrashing – running into people on the opposite side of the crowd. One guy even got hit directly in the face by a 360 spin kick. People were enjoying themselves, jokingly running at the sidelines and watching others recoil before laughing it off. This crowd were here to get wild and probably lose teeth.
Chained Up came on next, a 4-piece Sheffield local band. The singer seemed to be a new addition, having only been in the band for a month and a half but his stage presence was already insane. The man seemed to have all the confidence in the world like the stage was his second home. He managed to blend rap and metal music, which seems to be something growing in popularity once again (which I’m here for) and the band did it with such ease it seemed only second nature.
The frontman of the band was not afraid to interact with the crowd, commanding them at his whim. He encouraged stage divers, exclaiming “the stage is [so short] how are people not stage diving?” Which was all the encouragement this crowd needed. The vocalist would offer his mic to the audience, to finish the lyric or simply just scream whatever they wanted down and it really built a bridge between the stage and the audience. It goes without saying that the crowd were absolutely feral for this band. And I can see why. Before the band wrapped their set, the vocalist encouraged a cheer from the audience for the founding members of the band which was met with a great booming roar from below. With the authority the singer brings to the stage, I could see this band supporting bands like Bring Me The Horizon, Skindred or even Bad Omens.
On came Ego to the stage, a 4-piece Sheffield band. Once again the band seem to blend rap and hardcore together. Clear rap with great harsh vocals that really get a crowd going. The vocalist moved around the stage so much I would lose him in my camera because one moment he was in the frame and the next he’d vanished. He walked around the stage like a general commanding his soldiers, encouraging circle pits and even throwing punches himself on the stage (luckily not hitting any of the other members).
All of the bands had friends come down to see them perform and during the Ego set we even had the friends coming on the stage themselves to grab the mic from the vocalist and do their own harsh vocals. The vocalist would often offer his mic to people near the stage for them to scream into and it helped to keep that energy up in the entire room making people forget all about the long day’s work that ended only a couple hours before.
You’ll notice that a lot of the images I got for these bands, from Chained Up onwards, are all taken from behind the crowd. That’s because this was probably the most treacherous gig I’ve ever been to. With no photo pit, I at first managed to get some pictures from the mosh pit…but that was short lived once the second band took to the stage. At the ripe old age of 26, I’m now too old to get to work in the pit and instead decided to spare my life and safely reside on the outskirts…though that also had it’s moments with people running into the crowds or just simply falling into the crowd, which happened a lot.
There was a long intermission after this set, as it seemed the bands were actually ahead of schedule. An occurrence I didn’t think would ever be possible. It gave me time to look out to the crowd and observe them. It was interesting to see a mix of ages, from late teens to 50+ with a good ratio of male, female and others. After around 30 minutes or more, the room filled back up again and we were once more about to break some legs.
The fourth band tonight was Divine Hatred. A Sheffield born 5-piece band, the bassist also being the drummer of Ego. Immediately I was impressed with the deep false chords of the vocalist. They were stable and clean which only enhanced the melody of the songs. Each front man tonight was not afraid to control the crowd, and this band wasn’t an exception, commanding the crowd to get rowdy once more and start the pit up. People began to windmill and spin kick, again.
The vocalist moved around the stage and though there was some feedback coming from one of the amps, the band just incorporated this into the intros of their songs and started to shred along drowning it out. The band was joined on stage before the set finished with the vocalist of Chained Up and members of the crowd. Even those who didn’t want to partake in the mosh pit couldn’t help bobbing their heads to the breakdowns of the band, littered with sick riffs and heavy drums beats.
During the intermission, I was then approached by a man looking for his missing tooth…unfortunately I hadn’t seen it…as I say, this pit was the Everest of mosh pits.
Revelations, a 5-piece Chesterfield band, was the final group on the set. The bassist of this band also being the singer of Divine Hatred. The vocalist had some clean vocals within the songs that were then followed up with the filthiest (in a good way) fry screams I’d heard all night. The band had great riffs and clean playing from the guitarists that sounded great in the worn out room. The vocalist wasn’t shy about sending off the night with even more chaos, encouraging some classic two-steps which at just the mention already had the middle of the floor occupied by some slick and some great attempted two-steps. Some people however opted just to simply go back to wind-milling and spin kicking, which was my cue to get further away from the pit with my camera in hand.
The band clearly enjoyed being on the stage, members laughing at the audience and even looking shocked at the carnage below. The guitarist made sure to give a shout out to Chesterfield, which also happens to be my home town, saying “big up the crooked spire” which for anyone not from Chesterfield, is basically the town’s icon…a church roof that was poorly built…which is rather fitting for Chesterfield.
My conclusion for tonight can be summed up simply with “that was f\@*cking mental”. If Corporation do decide to host more of these nights, it would be great to see it become incorporated (no pun intended) into the metal scene of Sheffield. Make a night of it. Introduce yourself to newer bands. But most of all, go absolutely wild.