Noisegate / Charger

Rugeley Red Rose

May 21 1999

Well, if you've been following this weeks little escapades (what d'ymean you haven't?????), then you'll know the situation. I was late starting out. More footage to the floorage, and the chariot Murc does it's best to become a time machine rather than just a car. And somehow this time I manage to arrive with all of 2 minutes to spare. Which this week has been something of a result.

So, Charger are about to start. First time I've seen this lot, and the impression that is left is of another band from the school of Sabbathesque music married with hardcore vocals, albeit of a more digestible format than Iron Monkey. But there's a similarity there. And although there's some variation, a little singing at times, I'm still reeling from the System gigs this week and the proof that you can have extreme vocals but also variation and melody. So it's probably unfair to judge others until I get that out of my system (sorry. Been a long week. Lot's of driving y'know). I don't know the names of the songs, but there was one, played just after the band had said "we can't play that. It's 45 minutes, and we only have half an hour" that has a cracking dual guitar riff in there that sounds harmonically evil. Or something like that. It jumped out at me anyway. The songs are long drawn out pieces, and I need to sit down and make friends with it before I can fully decide whether it's going to be friends with me. Which is lucky in the grand scheme of things, as they've got a release coming out on Undergroove Recordings very soon now. Though I can do without another band going for the feedback enriched ending a la Soundgarden years ago, Iron Monkey and others too numerous to mention, as they often put on funeral lists.

During Noisegate's set, they announce that they've signed a deal with Earthtone 9's management, and have an album recorded and ready to release. Which is good news. And the music from it dominates tonights set. I did my customary action of making a mental note of the titles, only to leave the note behind when I left the venue. If someone finds it, would they be kind enough to return it to me. Ta. Musically it should sound excellent, though I have a feeling already that it's going to be "too much like Pantera" for certain high profile magazines. Like it's ok for American bands to sound like each other, but not for UK bands to. Uh huh. I see the logic in that. No, I really do. To an extent it's a good old fashioned gig. And maybe there's where the only problem I can see lies. Vocalist Nick tries hard to get a rapport going, and indeed manages it. But what he's saying is a bit cheesy and lame to my tastes. But there again, I personally think Phil Anselmo is a bit of a t!&t when it comes to stage banter, that Max Cavalier (nope, I MEANT to spell it that way) and his "fuck shit up" gets very boring, and that only the Ozzmeister can get away with the "let's go crazy". And those only work in a packed venue, which despite the decent turnout, well, the best one I've seen in the 3 times I've been here, this place isn't. Packed that is. There's songs such as Low, Stripped (I think), and I reckon they said the album is going to be called "By Any Means". It would be good to see them on a decent support slot with the chance to perform to a good turnout ready for this. Then the banter may work better. At the moment, musically and vocally it's pretty much there, can't fault it much at all. Let's just hope that the good old UK apathy doesn't strike once more.

And you know what, and I swear this is the truth. When I got home and stepped out of the car, MURC put it's hands on his hips, dipped the hip and looked me in the eye before saying "Dave, what the fuck are you trying to do to me. I'm not a bloody time machine. We need to talk." Gulp. Not even me car loves me now. I promise, next week I'll try to get the timings right.