Nottingham - Rock City

March 21

Mary Beats Jane, the Swedish support band, arrived on the stage unannounced and without much of a response from the crowd. Pretty much stayed like that throughout their set. Some of the stuff got a little heavy, but really, there seemed to be a bit too much of a mismatch in bands. I'm sure a lot of Entombed fans could appreciate them, but not when they are expecting music of the like delivered by Entombed. Nothing stuck in the mind about them, although probably the circumstances were a bit unfair by which to judge them.

Entombed have provided me with one of the nicest surprises of the year in the shape of their current album To Ride, Shoot Straight and Speak the Truth, so I thought I"d give them a go live. And it wasn't too disappointing at all. Admittedly, I seemed to be the only one who didn't know the opening song, judging by the number of others singing it, and the same happened throughout for pretty much any song not on TRSSASTT. But the stuff off of that album was cracking. The title track, Like This With the Devil, Damn Deal Done, Lights Out, Parasight and more. Cracking.

The band themselves are modern yet a throwback to a few years ago when thrash metal ruled the planet. Ok, you know, when Anthrax were a credible name to drop, Slayer were upsetting everyone by singing about Angels of Death and Metallica were still developing the crown and not even thinking of abdication. Vocalist LG Petrov could easily slip back to that era, and more power to him, although I have to say he was shorter and er, tubbier than I expected, couldn't help think of Blaze Bayley when seeing him. And the performance is unashamedly Heavy Metal, guitars to the sky, even if the rest of the band have the more *credible* look of short hair, shaved heads etc.

It was just great stuff, without having to worry about if you have the right tatoo, piercing in the correct organ or the right coloured (or strands of colour) hair or dreads. All the stuff that claims not to be trend and image oriented and yet is more so than ever. I just had the old t shirt, jeans, jacket, and long hair tied back, same as ever for me, and for once didn't feel too much like I was 'a relic of the 80's' even if I do listen to more modern and more diverse music than most of the current crop of 'disturbed and therefore able to relate' people. An enjoyable evening, made more so by the fact that a lot of bastards have now gone home and so I was able to relax a bit more.

So am I turning to a death metal head. Nah, don't think so, although I may well check out some of the earlier Entombed stuff. If you haven't heard anything by the band, then I recommend you start with TRSSASTT.