Live Reviews

Municipal Waste – Live

Camden Underworld

Given that the current thrash revival has been featured in the NME, of all publications, one contemplates whether just about every local scenester will now be donning Nuclear Assault shirts and hi-top trainers and proclaiming that they’ve always “dug Reign In Blood, dude”.

Still, for now, the Underworld remains a haven for the committed (and the crazy). “There are no posers here tonight…just ragers!” roars Mutant vocalist Atom Luchtenstein, clearly pleased that his band are whipping the pit into action at this early hour. With a clutch of high speed, heads-down anthems and some truly impressive gurning, this lot are exactly what the doctor ordered.

Scouse quartet SSS are highly unlikely to appear in any ‘sexiest band of 2007’ polls – and thank fuck for that. Closer in spirit to thrash’s hardcore punk roots, this is music made by misfits for misfits; and judging by the frenzied reaction down at the front, they have no shortage of takers. Check out their recent self-titled debut album on Earache Records; it will rock your world.

Plenty has been written about Municipal Waste‘s amusing onstage antics; and when tonight’s furious rendition of ‘Terror Shark’ heralds a couple of stagedivers dressed in shark costumes, it’s a clear indication that Tony Foresta’s crew aren’t taking themselves too seriously on a personal level.

But the real genius of this band lies in just how fast, tight and vicious they are; barely pausing for breath between songs, even as the Underworld’s ceiling starts to drip from the heat. Ever the people’s thrash band, they welcome the circle-pit maelstrom with high-fives and devil horns, and by the time they close with ‘Bangover‘, the ensuing stage invasion seems entirely appropriate.

“Municipal Waste are gonna fuck you up!” The crowd chants, in anticipation of an encore. Indeed they are – and you should be grateful. Thrash may be fashionable, but thankfully it’s still a hell of a lot of fun.

Alex Gosman