Solitary, Reaper & Thrashatouille
Review by Dani Maguire
Hi everyone – Rick here
I was due to be covering this gig but unfortunately my deformed spine had other ideas so I am indebted to POWERZONE Radio Show host Dani Maguire for stepping up to the plate and writing an excellent review of proceedings. Please make sure you tune in to his awesome radio show every Monday from 9-11pm on Calon FM (Links are at the bottom of the review). I shall now hand you over to Mr Maguire!
It was a cold November night in Wrexham town, but luckily those fine fellows at N.E.W. Metal Productions really turned the heat up with a line-up of head-swingin’ balls out thrash metal over at our favourite little venue, Atomic. A short foray into the streets on a mission to get some beer tokens took us to a cash machine some streets away, and the still air and empty town carried the sweet sound of sound checking, it could be heard loud and clearly even at that distance and it was like a siren-song, calling us closer…
…anyway, enough of that gubbins. We hurried to Atomic, ready for a night of good, old-fashioned heavy metal. Atomic is quite the place for it- a bottle bar downstairs (which I speedily emptied out of Hobgoblin) and a small room above with a stage, an excellent sound engineer and room for about 50ish burly metalheads to mosh in. It was the last show of the year here in Wrexham, so we were really up this one!
First up to whet our appetites were a band new to me and with a gimmick the thrash metal scene has been crying out for: THRASHATOUILLE! This young band were formed last year, they hail from Cheshire and play what they like to call ‘chef-based metal’ but in reality, it’s more like raw thrash with a touch of groove and some interesting lyrical concepts. It’s quite unusual to have recipes and songs about fry-up’s blasted out at you with ripping furiousity (it’s not a word, but you know what I mean!), accompanied by some riffs that gave a considerable contribution to my terrible neck pain when I woke the next day. A character was introduced- a psychotic spaghetti called ‘Bludgeonnaise’ who is kind of the bands’ mascot. The band certainly look the part too, wearing their chefs’ whites and chequered keks which does help to make it a little more surreal. The diminutive frontman got out and about into the crowd often and ended up with a hilarious classic cake in the face to close the set (after singing it a love song, naturally).
Now, this whole thing might sound a little silly- and that’s really the point. Thrashatouille are another British band that doesn’t take themselves too seriously, following in the footsteps (or should that be footprints) of Footprints in the Custard, Raised by Owls or Evil Scarecrow and for me, that’s great. Maybe not one for traditionalists (unless they lightened up!) but I’d certainly recommend going to see them. I certainly will be next time they’re near!
Thrashatouille, Atomic Live Clip
After a brief recess, Liverpool-based thrashers REAPER were pumped and ready to go! These guys came highly recommended from a metal peer and all-round good egg Paul- and I know from experience that when he recommends a band for me, I’ll enjoy them, and this proved to be true once again. They were tight, intense & quite frankly, fast as fook! Lead guitarist Anthony had me slack-jawed with awe at several times throughout their set and the crowd loved it. Frontman Daniel was on top of his game throughout, clinical with his guitar work too, and bassist Elliott plays that finger-picking style that Cliff Burton used to favour- looks cool and sounds superb. It was drummer Anthony’s first gig with Reaper but he slotted into his new role brilliantly, providing the background blast beats to complete their soundtrack of a warzone. A bruising set- I just wish they were able to stick around afterwards as I was planning to buy a patch from them to add to my cut. Ah well!
Reaper, Atomic Live Clip
To round out a great night of thrash, veterans SOLITARY hit the stage and they hit hard. Having seen Solitary a couple of times before, I knew what to expect; sheer brutality. I think these guys have it all- a solid back catalogue, fantastic stage presence, cool merch, and more importantly, songs that make you want to bang your head, repeatedly. It’s a crying shame that they aren’t as recognised in the scene as, say, Evile, when they are clearly on par at least (and don’t tell Evile I said this, but they MIGHT even be a touch better!). They have the brutality of Slayer, the memorable licks of Testament and an aggression all of their own. The Lancashire four piece are sticking to their promise to thrash forever and for that, we salute you. Everybody present was blown away, and personally, I especially enjoyed jumping in the pit with the guys from Thrashatouille throughout the set to those crushing riffs.
Solitary, Atomic Live Clip
I’m lucky enough to have been to many local gigs this year and have seen more than my fair share of stand-out performances. But on this ‘Thrash Friday’ I could not separate the bands. Every single one of them was spot on and gave us all some serious entertainment. Thank you to them for a night to remember and thank you to Fozzy and Beanie from N.E.W. Metal Productions for putting on yet another show. Here’s to another brutal year ahead!
North East Wales Metal Productions
Powerzone Radio Show on Calon FM
Goodfor Audio Entertainment
Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Dani Maguire and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.