Fear Factory / Kilgore / Spineshank

Nottingham Rock City

December 19 1998

Before the show, interviews took place with Fear Factory and Spineshank. Deciding to open the Spineshank interview with the words, “I’m not really that keen on the album” was well, honest but maybe confrontational in a way. At the end of the interview, Tommy, the drummer, said “well, I hope we can convince you tonight”. So did they? Nah, not really. It’s not that they’re bad, just that, like the album, they simply sum up a genre. A genre that is increasingly becoming stale. They do the whole thing well, they have a phat sound, they “throw shouts out” to their friends, they dedicate a song to the late Lynn Strait and Jonny does have a good voice, especially when he “sings”. But the songs don’t standout and inspire. Songs such as Grey and Stain come. And then they go. Course they’ll probably return and headline this place soon.

Kilgore are happy to be here, because they’re telling NottingHAM, London England, Germany that very statement. And they’ve got a killer album as well. Well they have if you read the mainpress. When I reviewed it a few issues back, it was an ok album. It probably still is, but I’ve not really listened to it since. Because it didn’t inspire me either. Shit, was it something in the water I drunk today? Anyway, live it’s a little more energetic and impacts better. Vocalist Jay comes across like a James Hetfield, he roams the front lip of the stage, and between songs conjures up visions of Elvis thaninyouvermuch. Sounds a little fake in terms of the “we’ll say this every night”. But what else is there to say? I’d probably be doing the same if I ever got to America. Musically it’s more distinct than Spineshank, with an Alice In Chains kind of vibe at times, as opposed to the KornTones of other bands. TK-421 ends the set, but doesn't feature any guest performance from Burton on vocals, unlike the album version. Maybe it needed it.

Fear Factory take to the stage to a bit of a roar if truth be told, and an absolute pants introduction. Why do bands get someone to be a t!&t and introduce them? Anyway, it looks like they’re pretty popular at the moment as the launch into the first of many tracks from Obsolete, in the shape of Shock. More popular than Sepultura and Soulfly judging by the size of tonights crowd. And it feels like they know it. From there in, the set is a mix of new material, and tracks from Demanufacture, with the colossal Self Bias Resistor being offered up early, I still don’t know how that man Herrera does the bass drumming he does. But then, I don’t know anything about drumming. I do know that the new material comes across better live than on the CD, so much so that after hearing the likes of Edgecrusher, Smasher / Devourer, Securitron, Hi Tech Hate and Descent, that I went home and had a listen to the CD again. Mind you, the Demanufacture material still seems to outshine it, with Pisschrist in particular a standout. The talk from Burton seems a bit cliched and rehearsed, but well, isn’t it the same for most bands? And set closer Resurrection is still by far the best track from Obsolete, and is one of the highlights of the entire set. Coming back for an encore, you’re still thinking how stupid those rubber brain like things that are placed on the mike stands look. You know, the er, replicas of the album cover. Cheap and cheesy.

But anyway, while I’m thinking that, the band are promising to do not 1, not 2 but 3 more songs. Wooohoooo. Demanufacture. Martyr. Replica, and just to prove that there’s like humour and spontaneity in these parts, they add in some snippets of Slayer and Pantera before ending everything with Dino wanting to hear one final chant of “you fat bastard” before they play Scapegoat. He wasn’t disappointed. And then the troops leave. Or something like that.

Bit of a star studded show here tonight as well, seeing as Paul and Jammer from Medulla Nocte were here, Zaq from Lysis and one of the guys from 3rd Stone. At the very least. And you know, one day all those bands, and many of the other UK greats may get the chance to actually play support on a show like this. Because it seems the only time the place packs out is for an American band, and lets face it, Spineshank and Kilgore are good at what they do and go down well. They would, they’re American. But the Nocte and others would be able to hold their own more than adequately if only they were given the chance.