First up on the bill was Brooklyn, NY's Python, featuring Lino Wreker AKA Desecrator, et al., on guitar and vocals. He has this great King Diamond/Sabbat (Japan) vocal approach I really dig. Few attempt and fewer succeed at any style resembling this! I am familiar with his work in Villains and Ceremonium (circa 2000). The Ceremonium connection was a chance one I made after first hearing them at a friend's home this past weekend. Anyway, this was Python's debut record release show, and it was great!
Python is a power trio which utilizes some Venom/Sabbat (Japan)/(very early) Bathory type riffs with the focus on some heavy and traditional Doom Metal like Angel Witch, Candlemass mixed with occasional middle-eastern type riffs/scales. At least that's how they sounded to me, I arrived a bit late and missed a few songs! Desecrator's vocals remain in the style I love with the added elements of creepy whispering and prayer or mantra-like chanting delivery. Excellent stuff!
Savage Master took stage next with their brand of Heavy Metal, influenced in style and appearance by bands like (early) Death SS, The Mentors, Judas Priest, Sabbat (Japan). More fantastic Metal! They currently have a 7" EP and an LP to their name, as far as I am aware. Savage Master also played Ragnarokkr Fest this year, which I missed, but I hear they were great there as well!
High Spirits took stage next and stole the show, for me! Chris Black always puts out quality material, my favorite being his Superchrist project, AKA MotorMaiden (at least in my head). I also recently got to listen to his Aktor project, which sounds a bit like Lemmy-era Hawkwind mixed with Kraftwerk. Weird and trippy with a touch of heaviness, so you know I love it!
Anyway, back to High Spirits! They delivered an intense show, featuring "Another Night In The City" (which was well received by a NYC audience), "Full Power," "Demons At Your Door," "I Need Your Love," "I Need To Know," and "High Spirits." For those unfamiliar, High Spirits play stripped down, efficient Hard Rock/Heavy Metal that's catchy as all hell (and not the Misfits song, though maybe ALMOST as catchy). I dare you to listen and not start singing along! Those familiar with this blog will recall my review in the 'Best of 2014' post of their "You Are Here" album. I really should have described them more in depth in my review of the Defenders Of The Old Fest III post, but I was so excited...heh... for Exciter!
Christian Mistress completed the show with a high-octane set of songs. I'm not too familiar with their catalog at this time, but there were songs from at least the last 2 LP's I believe. Anyway, the band was really energetic live, with their vocalist coming into the audience at one point to stir us up! Also, the guitars were especially heavy live with the vocals a bit huskier and smokier in a way that improved the sound too.
In short, this is a great tour that is totally worth checking out for fans of old Hard/Heavy Metal!
*Review copyright The Samnambulist, 2015*