Machine Head / Bring Me The Horizon / DevilDriver

Image by Iain Purdie via Flickr

[For more photos from this gig, check out the following two Flickr sets: Machine Head / DevilDriver]

We’d been waiting for this gig for a while, but unfortunately Gillian hasn’t reacted well to the whole pregnancy thing and was exhausted on the night with a huge pile of work to catch up on as well. As a result, I drove over to the SECC myself where I found that I couldn’t even pass my ticket off to a tout. Apparently sales hadn’t been that great. Mind you, last year’s gig was at the much smaller Academy and I do recall thinking it was quite a jump in scale.

I got there in time to catch the last three or four songs by DevilDriver who were pretty good. Unless I’ve seen them at a festival somewhere, the last (and first) time I saw them was in Brisbane in 2006 (details on the travel blog). What little I saw tonight impressed. High tempo, a good front man in Dez Fafara and the crowd on their side made for a good 15 minutes.

Frankly, I was amazed they were opening. Given the style of music, they’re a natural warm-up band for Machine Head. Certainly better than Bring Me The Horizon who had the longer second slot.

Now I’ve not heard much in the way of positive press about BmtH. In fact, I’ve pretty much heard nothing but detrimental comments, to put it kindly. When they came on stage at Sonisphere last year, the Slayer fans were walking back towards the campsite after a 60-minute set. The majority actually took the time to stop at the stage and boo for a considerable length of time.

After tonight’s 45 minutes, or however long it was, I can see why. Bring Me The Horizon are – simply – ****. Watching them reminded me of Daphne and Celeste being shoved on stage at Leeds Festival back in 2000. Completely out of place, incapable of realising it and blundering on regardless. Car crash stage performers of the worst ilk.

Robb Flynn
Robb Flynn

While they certainly have their fans, the vast majority seemed to be girls aged around 14. Though there were a couple of hundred of them, they were easily outnumbered by the majority of the crowd who boo’d them between each track. The singer’s cry of “Boo louder if you love us” simply resulted in the crowd chanting “****! ****! ****!” instead.

I simply cannot fathom why the promoters put them on the same bill as Machine Head and DevilDriver, and certainly why they were given the more prominent support slot.

Ah, well. It’s all in the past and – despite my ears wanting to crawl up my arse to spare me the torment – I survived. Which is a good thing because Machine Head were on next.

Regular tourers, they’d hit the Academy last year with Hatebreed in support and put on a moderately OK show. Not their fault, it was one of those nights where the sound at the Academy left a lot to be desired. Here at the SECC, though, you do get your moneysworth from the sound system and Robb Flynn and co. really put it through its paces. Arriving on the back of a great new album, they let rip with a great variety of new and classic material.

Taking time to talk to the audience, it’s obvious that Flynn loves his job. A huge smile on his face between songs, all the posing you could wish for,

Machine Head
Image by Iain Purdie via Flickr

awesome riffage and skin-bashing… there are few metal bands today that are on a par with Machine Head for sheer live power. Despite the fact that their newer songs does tend to run for a bit too long, they don’t seem to drag the way recent Iron Maiden material does. There’s no huge stomping Eddie, but on the other hand the music is better. A fair swap, in my opinion.

I honestly think the pit was the largest I’ve seen outside of a festival setting and it was well used by a huge number of people. There isn’t a song that you

can’t mosh to in their catalogue: new titler “Suffer Unto The Locust”, Dimebag Darrell-inspired “Aesthetics of Hate“, Xbox owner favourite “Halo”, surprise inclusion “Bulldozer”, classic “Ten Ton Hammer“, compulsory “Davidian”… the list goes on. Not a duff song all night.

Great crowd, great sound, great light show, great venue. Only a shame that a ticket went to waste.

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[…] Needless to say, the natives were somewhat restless by the time the lads walked on stage to the biggest “BOO” I’ve ever heard since Daphne & Celeste bounced on in front of the crowd at Leeds Festival. Or perhaps when Bring Me The Horizon opened for Machine Head last year. […]

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