Beermageddon 2021 Day Three

Bearmageddon 2021 Poster

Beermageddon 2021 Day Three
Stoke Prior Sports & Country Club
Stoke Prior, Bromsgrove
29/08/2021
Review by Beth Jones & Rick Tilley

The festival life throws up some weird and wonderful goings on, that only exist inside that little bubble for the time you’re in it. It’s because everyone uses it as a chance to let their hair down, and leave the grey, soul-destroying world of adulting behind for a few days. And a perfect example of this led us into the final day of the festival, in the shape of an unnamed gang of campers having an all-night party accompanied by a rather loud, and very eclectic playlist.

It was lovely to hear the happy singing at 1am. It had become slightly less lovely by 5am however, and I think this sentiment was shared by the majority of others on the campsite. So, when someone eventually shouted, “Will you shut the fuck up!!”, I’m confident I wasn’t the only one who did a little silent round of applause. ‘The Floral Dance’, much as it’s a very unique tune, is probably not the best thing to play full blast at 5am, whatever the setting! However, this…er…interesting night did manage to fuel sleep deprivation to the point of being hyperactive, but not quite hallucinating, meaning we were ready for the final day!

First up was the job of taking the traditional Beermageddon group photo. At the helm of this mission was press co-ordinator, photography extraordinaire, and all-round top bloke, Will Tudor. Gathering together a bunch of people three days into field dwelling (most of whom had an 80% proof ABV blood alcohol content) and making them all look the same way, is a little like herding cats who’ve been on a cat nip bender. But Will has a big voice, and the photo was achieved without any deaths. Result!

With that, and a belly full of bacon and caffeine, it was time to turn our attentions to music again for the beginning of the final day. And providing the opening were Melted Messiah, a Stoner/Sludge, Jazz/Doom Black Metal duo from the wild North (Dunfermline, Scotland). Considering there was only 2 of them, they made a very big sound. Lots of crunchy rumble and distorted fuzziness from the guitar mostly filled the gap where there would usually be a bass, delivering a very doomy sound. And you could definitely hear some jazz influence in the drumming. They were good, and endearing, and the crowd looked on with pleasure.

Melted Messiah

https://www.facebook.com/MeltedMessiah

Dead Mob were next, taking us from the sublime to the caw blimey! Hailing from up the road in Birmingham, this young Hardcore band were a bag of excited energy, which flowed out across the audience and made the entire room lurch. They certainly blew away any sleepy heads that were still trying to bring themselves round. But apart from being loud and full of chaos, these guys were tight and extremely talented. They brought me a lot of joy – at the ripe old age of 41, it’s great to see a young band who know exactly who they are and throw every bit of passion into their performance that they can muster. From a photography point of view, they were really fun to shoot, too. Constantly throwing shapes and moving, laying everything bare, and letting the audience feed off their power. Awesome set.

Dead Mob

https://www.facebook.com/deadmobuk

Next up, and keeping the pace afloat, were At Dawn We Attack; A 5 piece from the West Midlands who are a joyfully chaotic, crunchingly heavy multi-genre crossover collective, all of whom clearly have an appreciation for facial hair! Frontman Bryan was a live wire, thriving off the crowd, and ending up in it at one point, too. The best way I can describe him is, if you took Devin Townsend in the Strapping Young Lad days, made him smoke 50 Marlboro and drink a gallon of JD in quick succession, gave him some dreadlocks, and then injected him with the Tasmanian Devil, you’d be somewhere close. By now the room was bouncing. Damn it was good.

At Dawn We Attack

https://www.facebook.com/atdawnweattack

It was time to turn our attention to some good, salt of the earth, Old-School Thrash Metal next, with the maiden performance of UK Thrashers, Sun Of The Endless Night. With more than a little hint of the Big 4 in their sound, these guys took us through a rip-roaring set that continued to tear to shreds any Sunday-ness that we still had left. Powerful riffs and smashing rhythms, along with angry gravelly vocals made for a show that was confident and impressive, and I would recommend anyone to check them out.

Sun of The Endless Night

https://www.facebook.com/UKThrash

Another band fresh from an appearance at Bloodstock graced the stage next; Alt/Progressive Metallers, Netherhall. Melodically I liked them. But in terms of performance, they were quite a stark contrast to the upbeat, feeding off the crowd, and quenching the onlookers’ thirst for engagement in return atmosphere that we’d been served with the last three bands. The invisible 4th wall between the audience and the stage seemed more noticeable than it had done the rest of the day. For me this made their set a little difficult to get into. But variety is the spice of life, and this is, of course, just my opinion.

Netherhall

https://www.facebook.com/NetherhallUK

After what had been a superb day so far, I decided it was time for food. Having cased out the menus looking for what I could eat at the beginning of Saturday, I knew exactly where I was heading – Little Al’s Kitchen, for Slow cooked beef. And it was the most awesome slow cooked beef and roast potatoes I’ve eaten in a long time (his Chilli on Saturday night was also superb)! I don’t think I’ve ever eaten so well at a festival ever and chatting to Al after partaking of his magnificent food made it clear that this was indeed his mission – to feed people properly and cater for intolerance ridden awkward heads like me – YAY! Between Al, and JW Catering, I’d managed to not eat shit all weekend, and that is an achievement!

https://www.facebook.com/Littlealskitchen
https://www.facebook.com/Jwcateringuk

Feeling full up and ready for more music, I headed back to the hall for the penultimate band of the festival, Symphonic Black Metallers, Kull. They were a new name to me, and I wasn’t sure what to expect, but from the second they started, I was in my element. Huge, full on symphonic synths, ridiculously precise rhythms, intricate and demonic guitars and bass, and the vicious and hypnotic vocals and presence of front man, Tarkan, made this the standout performance of the weekend for me. This thunderous and all enveloping sound had me transfixed from start to finish, and as soon as the performance was over, I headed to the merch stand to buy their music (incidentally, this was the point that I discovered their former guise. They used to be Bal-Sagoth!). The power of this music was addictive and I needed more! It’s been on in my car pretty much ever since. L-O-V-E-D IT!! I will be watching out for an opportunity to catch Kull again very soon.

Kull

https://www.facebook.com/Kullmetal

And so, we reached our conclusion, with festival headliners, and all-round crazy nutcases, Acid Reign. The first time I saw Acid Reign was at Hammerfest 2018, so I was sure of two things. Firstly, we were in for some fun, and secondly, making a pictorial record of said fun was going to be hard work! The best way to photograph Acid Reign, and in particular front man, H, is to become a telepathic mind reader so you know where he’s going to, so you’re brain to hand co-ordination has time to make you press the button before he becomes a blur. I’m new and a novice at this photography lark, be gentle on me, please!!

First world photographer problems aside, what a show these guys gave us. The room was rammed full, and the crowd lapped up every second of this raucous romp through Thrashland, injected with comedic capers, crowd interaction, and a hell of a lot of love. From H disappearing in the middle of a song, and reappearing carrying a tray of beers he had just purchased from the bar to bassist Pete Dee getting involved in a pit, while still sustaining a steady bass line, this was a very special way to finish a very special weekend. No-one was frowning, no-one looked stressed, everyone was just having a great time.

Acid Reign

https://www.facebook.com/acid.reign.thrash

And that, ladies and gentlemen, was a wrap. I’m not scared to admit that I got a touch emotional when it finished and the house lights came up, because it was all over. Apologies to Will Tudor, and Tony Gaskin for welling up in your general direction! We had just lived three days of pure blissful joy. I’m so glad that I talked myself back into going, and so grateful that we got to be there covering the event for Ever Metal. So, some huge thanks are due. To Jim Beerman, for being the Godfather of Beermageddon, and never giving up, to bring this beautiful thing to all of us. To Will Tudor for his infinite wisdom, photography and otherwise – I have banked all his lessons. To all the crew for creating, maintaining, and running this event like clockwork. To the bands who smashed everything out of the park to entertain us, the bar staff who kept our thirst quenched, the caterers who filled our bellies, whatever time of day we wanted it, and the security staff who kept us all safe, but had a good laugh with everyone too.

Incidentally, it appears that there were zero covid cases linked to this event, which in the current climate is a fucking magnificent achievement. But maybe that’s because this was more than just a festival, it was the reunion of a huge extended family, back together after far too long apart. And we were honoured to have been allowed into that family. See you next year xx

LINKS:
www.beermageddon.co.uk/
www.facebook.com/beermageddonfestival
www.facebook.com/groups/247287828724525

Beermageddon 2022 Event Page
www.facebook.com/events/247818157211596

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Beth Jones, Rick Tilley, 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.

Beermageddon 2021 Day Two

Beermageddon Poster

Beermageddon 2021 Day Two
Stoke Prior Sports & Country Club
Stoke Prior, Bromsgrove
28/08/2021
Review by Beth Jones & Rick Tilley

The dawning of day two in our little patch of grass, in a rather damp field in Bromsgrove brought with it some interesting feelings. Mainly still happiness it has to be said. But that was now joined with sleep deprivation, and the nagging question of “How the actual fuck does anyone enjoy camping?!” Every bone in my body felt like it had been ripped out and used to hit something with, then repositioned, only not quite in the right place, and good lord, what was that repulsive smell? Oh yeah…me!

But my woes were soon distilled when I was greeted by the smiling face of Noel Edmunds in the portaloo. I say the smiling face, what I really mean is the smiling faces… Many, many Noels watched as I conducted my morning ablutions, and while his porcelain mush does make me reminisce about Saturday night TV of my childhood, it makes any other, er… action, shall we say, slightly less easy. (Rick here. Just so you don’t think Beth has completely lost the plot, overnight, someone had stuck many A4 photos of UK TV Presenter Noel Edmunds all over the insides of the portaloos)!!

After my hallucinogenic toilet experience, and a quick can as a breakfast aperitif, we headed to the lovely JW Catering burger van for bacon, as is customary at such events. This marvelous little eatery was one of two at the event, the other being Little Al’s Kitchen, and between the two of them, they did a marvelous job catering for the revelers, even me, the awkward one with food intolerances.

And with that, it was back to business. The first event of the day was a small remembrance service for friends lost. This year has been harsh on the Metal community, as it has with communities, across most of the world. And this was a chance to remember with fondness. Rick and I observed from afar, as, with this being our first year, we felt it should be silent observers of the Beermageddon family of old at this point.

After a moment of melancholy, what we needed was more music. First up to provide us with our boogie boots for the day were Heavy Melodic Metallers, Sorceress Of Sin. Fronted by Lisa Skinner, a veritable powerhouse of vocals, they took us through half an hour of thunderous classic Heavy Fucking Metal, which again got the party started in fine fashion. One of our reviewers, here at Ever Metal, recently reviewed their new album “Constantine” and was very impressed. Judging by their performance here, his positive views were well founded. A great way to start the day.

Sorceress Of Sin

https://www.facebook.com/Sorceressofsin

Next up was a firm favourite of ours, with the added bonus of also being Welsh (CYMRU AM BTYH), Democratus (Okay, so they might be from the South, so not proper Wales, like up North here, but I’ll let them off, because they’re jolly nice chaps ** covers head and waits for North/South divide backlash** I’m joking guys, please take nothing I say seriously, apart from the good stuff). One thing that always gets me with these guys is the power and passion in Steve’s voice, and this performance was no exception. Melodic Death Metal of the finest caliber, and those gathered in the room clearly agreed, as there was much jollification and banging of heads.

Democratus

https://www.facebook.com/democratusband

Black Pyre where a new name to us, but again from the Wales (we plan to take over the world you know! One band at a time). They painted a stark Black metal picture for the gathered crowd, and this is the point where I will hand over to the esteemed Mr Tilley to tell you more about them, as he’s more into the Blacker side than me!

Hello, it’s me to talk about Black Pyre’s performance. Not being familiar with the material and with them being a Black Metal band it did take me a couple of songs to get into but then everything clicked big time. Black Pyre don’t play everything at light speed and that is, very much to their advantage. This is Doom laden and evil Black Metal that is old-school and reminded me on several occasions of late 80’s Bathory, which from me is high praise. I thoroughly enjoyed them and am looking forward to getting much more familiar with their music. Now, back to Beth…

Black Pyre

https://www.facebook.com/BlackPyreMusic

I wasn’t quite sure what to expect from our next band, Dies Holocaustum. I like things to be a surprise, so I don’t check out any bands that I haven’t come across before we go to a festival, especially one where there are no clashes so you can conceivably watch every band. I was thinking, given the name, that we might be in for something blackened and doomy, but in fact what we actually got was some bloody good Old-School Death Metal, with more than a lot of Thrash thrown in for good measure. Really Heavy, really punch you in the face until your teeth fall out, really solid, and tight as anything. I was very impressed.

 Dies Holocaustum

https://www.facebook.com/diesholokaustum

Repulsive Vision were another new name for us, but they brought another full-on Old-School Death Metal show our way, just after teatime, on a sunny Saturday, in a posh leafy village. The naughty in me really fucking loves that. What would the neighbours say? I don’t know, but my field of fucks to give doth be barren!! What a performance these guys put in. So much energy and emotion unleashing from them in what, in the grand scheme of things, was a pretty small space. The whole room was bouncing, and it was epic. I also have to mention here a fledgling metal head who, for the entire weekend, was having the time of their lives! I’ve since discovered their name – Oz. And they were slamming and circle pitting good style during this performance. It warms my heart to see the future living the dream right now. My 14-year-old is rather reserved, but she also approved of these guys, and you could tell this from the slight movement of her head. Her resting bitch face was slightly less restful, which is a firm sign of positivity!

Repulsive Vision

https://www.facebook.com/RepulsiveVision

Filling up the main support slot tonight were a band that we, at Ever Metal HQ are familiar with, and very fond of, Ashen Crown. Hailing from the West Midlands and bringing a technical hit of Extreme/Death Metal, these guys are probably the band we knew most about at this festival. Having been another of the bands fresh from Bloodstock, frontman Kieran had been allowed out of quarantine, after picking up the dreaded rona, some 9 hours before this gig, and he was feeling the penance of the lurgi on his vocals. However, that didn’t show in their performance one little bit. It was tight as ever, heavy as ever, and in your damn face as ever. I don’t think I have ever seen these guys give a bad performance yet, regardless of the venue. Keiran mate, you really had nothing to worry about. And the gathered crowd will reaffirm that.

Ashen Crown

https://www.facebook.com/ashencrown.uk

Our headliners for Saturday were a comedy party punk band, lovingly known as The Kunts, or Kunt And The Gang, depending on which circles you move in. In full festival tradition, Saturday is the time when everyone is warmed up enough, and suitably oiled by drink, to have fun, before the inevitable Sunday ‘OMG I think I might be dead, I smell dead, I don’t remember what the outside world looks like, and my liver has become a warzone’ lull sets in. The Kunts were indeed the perfect soundtrack for that. Sadly, I was probably too sober to appreciate them fully, as I can’t take pictures drunk, and Will Tudor would have thrown me out of the pit if I was, because I would have been a liability (health and safety is vital in these situations). They were essentially a very comedic anarchic punk rock act, which was musically done well, and they had an endearing stage presence. The prude in me got bored of the toilet humour quickly, but the anarchist in me loved it! And ‘Fucksticks’ is now my new favourite expletive for when things go wrong and is infinitely more satisfying than ‘Buggeration’ which is what it has replaced.

The Kunts

https://www.facebook.com/kuntandthegang

And with that, Day 2 was over, and we were knackered, so we went to bed!

LINKS:
www.beermageddon.co.uk/
www.facebook.com/beermageddonfestival
www.facebook.com/groups/247287828724525

Beermageddon 2022 Event Page
www.facebook.com/events/247818157211596

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Beth Jones, Rick Tilley, 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.

Beermageddon 2021 Day One

Bermageddon 2021 Poster

Beermageddon 2021 Day One
Stoke Prior Sports & Country Club
Stoke Prior, Bromsgrove
27/08/2021
Review by Beth Jones and Rick Tilley

Rick Here,

Before I hand you over to Beth for the Day One review of Beermageddon I would like to say that I did have notes written to add my thoughts but she has done such a good job of not only describing the evening, but also echoing my sentiments, that I’ve just left it alone. I will just say that this was our first Beermageddon, as it had always managed to clash with something else, but we are well and truly converted and will return for, hopefully, many years to come!

Gig, gig, gig, gig, yay, friends, field, music, argh, panic! That’s essentially the best description I can give you of the lead up to our first time venturing out into the world properly since, what I shall lovingly describe as, the Clusterfuck Armageddon that was the last 18 months. So many things, none of them good, but let’s not dwell on that eh? Instead let me tell you about the positively lovely way to make our return from the hermit hole back into a semi functional society that was Beermageddon Festival. A small and close-knit family festival where a whole lot of love happened.

After only making the final decision that I was confident enough to leave the comfort of my sofa the day before the festival, I wasn’t my usual organized self. But, armed with some beer, a brand new and entirely free tent (long story) and negative lateral flow tests, Rick and I, and our willing apprentice (well 14-year-old, but I figured that was a nicer description than ‘moody cow’) set off for our destination El Paradiso…sunny Bromsgrove!

The journey was annoying, but as soon as we arrived at the campsite, it felt like we had come home. Seeing the smiling faces of old friends, and people who would become new friends, was a very welcomed tonic to the numb depressive melancholy. Putting up the tent however was not! Turns out the best coping strategies for erecting your canvas are swearing, sweating, and cider. This is a fact I already knew but had somehow forgotten since it’s been a while. Anyway, now that I looked like a bedraggled swamp thing, it was time for some bands! To ease everyone back in to existing in the same 2-meter space as someone else, without freaking out, there were only 4 bands on the Friday night.

First up, and hailing from Scotland, Cuttin’ Edge provided some great rock to get the party started for the small and slightly terrified looking crowd that had decided it was in for a penny, in for a pound, and taken the plunge to venture indoors! Hi-Octane, dirty riffs and rugged grizzly vocals where the name of the game for these guys. A sort of Motorhead meets ZZ Top feel which blew away some cobwebs and had everyone tapping along as they stood at the bar (yes a real bar, with real life human people, serving real pints – amazeballs), or nodding along down at the front. This was a brilliant way to kick things off. A real tempo setter, that let everyone know that a very good weekend was in store.

Cuttin' Edge

https://www.facebook.com/cuttinedge2018

Midlands Hard rockers, Shackled, took to the stage next, fresh from a performance on the Jager stage at Bloodstock 10 days or so previously. They kept the pace and crunch going, and had a real groove. Driven by chunky riffs and rumbling bass, and some sumptuous soloing, they continued to remind the gathered crowd, who now looked slightly less petrified, of the joy of actually seeing a band live. And by the looks on their faces, they were having equally as much fun as we were. God it’s so good to be back!

Shackled

https://www.facebook.com/ShackledRock

Control The Storm were a late addition to the bill, due to good old ‘Rona striking. Hey, I love CTS but hadn’t yet seen them live, so I was fine with that, and their live performance lived up to their recorded material. Epic melodic metal with more than a hint of synth, they gave us a heavy and full sound that was tight as anything, and exciting. The symphonic strings and vocal harmonies are what make it for me. But the technicality of the guitar riffs and solos are also impressive. And, by that point, everyone had thrown off their woes, and found their groove again. The party was in full swing, and the ale was flowing almost as gleefully as the music.

Control The Storm

https://www.facebook.com/ControlTheStorm

Putting us to bed were the finest bunch of upstanding gents you’re likely to meet in a field, in Bromsgrove, in August – Wired THC. After winning the public vote in 2019, they returned to headline the Friday this year, and if we thought we’d been partied already that night, they had a thing or two to teach us. A superb Hardcore/Thrash crossover, Wired ripped the entire leafy village of Stoke Prior a new one with this set. The room was bouncing, and full of magical energy for the entire set. Audience participation was the name of the game, and the performance came complete with a couple of guests visiting the stage, including Wired superfan, Jag’s bestie, and one of the nicest people you will ever meet in your life, the legend that is John Matthews! What a way to finish the day.

Wired THC

https://www.facebook.com/WIREDTHC

Rick and the teen had already admitted defeat before Wired had finished, but I stayed to the death, and then wandered back to camp Ever Metal. I was, ironically, far too wired to even think about attempting to crawl into the tent, so I sat in my car for a bit, watching the last of the revellers mingling in the area outside the hall where this wonderful evening had taken place.

And here’s where I take things from larking around, to heartfelt and philosophical. I felt a warmth and comfort that I hadn’t felt for some time sitting there in my car, even though the night air was beginning to chill. The breeze was carrying a sound to my resting place, that brought me a lot of peace. That was the sound of joyful laughter. Of friends catching up after too long apart. Of new friendships being formed after an isolation that no-one had ever had to contemplate or comprehend before. Something special had just taken place and I was so thankful to be part of it. And tomorrow would be another day, and we were looking forward to that immensely…

LINKS:
www.beermageddon.co.uk/
www.facebook.com/beermageddonfestival
www.facebook.com/groups/247287828724525

Beermageddon 2022 Event Page
www.facebook.com/events/247818157211596

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Beth Jones, Rick Tilley, 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.