Peterborough is a funny old place, a breeding ground for plenty of local talent, home of bands like P.S.O.T.Y, The Infernal Sea and Vendetta to name a few. The last two having recently both played at our favourite UK metal festival Bloodstock Open Air (a festival that has much in common with plenty of tonight’s line-up). Despite this though, there are extremely few places that aren’t back room pubs (while they exist!) to put on a worthwhile show, we do however have the Met Lounge, not known for often putting on its metal shows. On the rare occurrence akin to the planets aligning, it does happen, and the Easter bank holiday Monday happened to be one. Of all the weekends what a monster of a lineup too. Blood Red Throne had stopped by as part of the Big Red Juicy tour, bringing Sublime Eyes and Wretched Soul on the road with them, also joining were local newcomers making a huge impression on the scene Mörti Viventi and relatively local act Krysthla.
Opening up proceedings were Wellingborough based Krysthla, sweet Jesus they opened up a can of whoop ass with a damn nuke, a formation of former members of Deadeye (a band I know and love from sharing a stage with them many years ago, and one I do miss) and Gutworm, they brought a technical assault that was so tight and destructive that it would be enough to even make the likes of Decapitated blush. For a small venue in a place that hasn’t much going for it, the sound was immense and of such clarity that it washes even some favourite London venues in its wake. Not put off by the often overlooked place of opening, they put on a show that would really need to get the rest of the bands pulling out their best if they had any hope in topping them, but anyone that caught them at Bloodstock last year would already know that.
Following up were the first of our overseas acts, and yet another BOA 2016 veteran, Sublime Eyes. These guys have a great blend of melodic death metal crossed with thrash. I didn’t catch them last year but did manage to witness vocalist Arvid Tjelta share the stage with the recently retired Beholder, an instantly recognisable character with a love for what he does. As soon as they are underway they have themselves a good few laughs and hammer away track after track with great gusto. The only annoyance I find myself having after their set is the fact I missed them last year at BOA 2016 and will be kicking myself over it for a long while to come, one to catch if ever you find yourselves the chance.
Coming to the halfway point of the bands, it was the local guys Mörti Viventi that were to take to the stage, despite beginning life as a one man project of front man Aidy Heathershaw, they now embrace a fully fledged lineup making a four piece of superb talent. Thrash metal with a fresh, yet old style, something to really behold, the local crowd all seem to be sporting the band’s shirts and with great reason as they lay down a set to remember, crowd chants included. They are sure enough making themselves a name and deservedly so, currently sat in the semi-final heats of the Leicester leg of the Hobgoblin Metal to the Masses, they’re a must to see live.
With a place on the Sophie Lancaster stage at BOA 2017, Wretched Soul play with a what seems to be a touch more avant-garde than all the previous bands, but still just as heavy. The four piece put on an awesome show, making great use of the room on the stage they have, and just like all the previous they have a perfect sound and hammer out plenty to what is now a much looser crowd that are seeming to let themselves go and really enjoy themselves, a feeling that only seems mutual from the band. Other than what seems to be a few moments with some slight slips, they put out a near perfect display, a catch up with a mate towards the end of their set has him also pick up on a few things that I seem to notice myself that have them feel slightly underperforming considering the position on the bill with that much talent. None the less, damn good, maybe not one that I personally would have on for the fourth band, but then again we all have our days and hangovers.
Rounding off the night come the reason the gig is here, Blood Red Throne. Pushed by a few members of local bands to get the gig in the first place, they were set to bring their zero holds barred approach to brutal death metal. The crowd in parts heavily liquored up, were struggling already to hold their excitement as those at the barrier rattle the hell out of it while rapturously screaming Blood Red Throne. Feeding off the energy, the band are setting up and already some enjoying themselves as guitarist Ivan gives some serious Texas Rattlesnake attitude with his Dimebag love. Despite the hangovers taking toll on the band, they don’t give a moments pause and pull out the performance of the night, floor monitors falling over in the first few songs from starting, they make use of the extra stepping ground they’ve found themselves and get closer to the crowd. Despite every drummer of the night being hidden away in the dark at the back, all have made the earthquake-like blows known, none more so that with Blood Red Throne.
Battling against the barrage of sound, the crowd embrace the insanity with a few knowing full well that the hangovers, aches and pains will all be worthwhile. It isn’t until the end when I remove my earplugs just before the end of the set that I hear how devastating and loud the sound is, but that swans song everyone will hear for the week to follow will all have been worth it, Sweet Jesus it was one hell of a show, if Jesus died on that weekend, it wasn’t the resurrection that moved the rock and body, it would have all been the power of that show!