Aeon kicked off the UK leg of their Aeon’s Black tour upstairs at The Garage, Islington. I went along to interview the band and review the gig. As someone new to death metal, this was going to be an interesting night for me.
First up was the one-man death metal show that was ‘Regurgitate Life’. The Solo project of Sammy Urwin, his sheer power on guitar and vocals made you forget that he was on stage minus the presence of at least three other people. It was only when the next band went on stage that you noticed a difference in the roundness of the overall sound. Urwin is undoubtedly a more than capable of carrying off a successful solo project, and it will be exciting to see Regurgitate Life with a backing band adding to the power of what is already an incredibly strong sound.
Next was Ageless Oblivion, a band that really seemed in tune with each other (both literally and figuratively) and put on more of a show. There was a nice mix of tempos between the songs and the setlist was played in an order designed to drive the audience into a frenzy, only to bring us back down gently again. It was as if they were giving us a chance to breathe and remember where we were, before handing us over to the next support act to thrash us once again.
Voices powered through their set with no let-up – there was no stopping them, no noticeable tempo changes, and all very high-powered, blood-pumping stuff that left the audience begging for mercy. There was so much energy and drive being thrown into every one of their songs that you couldn’t help but absorb it and let it consume you. Voices’ fierce playing showed off their tight musicianship, particularly in their stunning guitar solos.
Dyscarnate took the game up another level. They were good and they knew it; after every song they took their time to tell the audience to ‘make some fucking noise’ or ‘fucking headbang’ or ‘show some fucking appreciation for the bands that played tonight and fucking Aeon’, and to give them their due the audience fucking reacted and did what they were told. It’s easy in to see why Dyscarnate were on top of the supporting bill: if you are a fucking audience that’s fucking ready for the main act, then these are the ultimate warm-up guys . Visually, as well having two lead singers, the band was a very pleasing experience aesthetically… don’t ask me why, it just was.
Lastly the main act. Aeon. If you’ve read my interview with them already you will have seen that I said I found it nigh-on impossible to find a bad review about them, and from the first ten seconds of playing I could see why instantly. The support acts – Regurgitate Life being the exception – all pushed their energy into the audience. Indeed, they were each on the point of forcing their energy out into the audience so much that they at times looked like they were going to collapse or burst a respective blood vessel. Aeon had just as high-powered a sound but they seemed totally at ease on stage. They took as much energy from the audience as they gave – granted they were the headliners, but even so there was something about them that seemed to suggest they would have been just as relaxed if they were starting out. They took their time between songs and they spoke to the audience, but the fact that they kept their focus and energy upon the music rather than on the people watching them made them instantly look like masters of their field. The only bad point was the set being cut short to a late start.
All in all the night was an education in tight musicianship, and how to handle an audience. If you get the chance to see any of these bands, GO!