Dingwalls – Camden
It’s Sunday night and a few hours ago I was out of my brains until 8am on the backfoot of a wedding that went into extra time! My brain is like a squashed orange under the wheels of a 4×4 in the street and how I find myself at Dingwalls watching one of the worst bands I have ever seen is incredible! They seem to be playing with their amps at 12 (not even 11!) is just simply questionable all round. The band are called Black Moses and quite frankly they suck. The singer sucks, their sound sucks and the soundman should be forced to suck eggs through hosepipes whilst gaffer-taped to a live cow cos this show was way too fucking loud and MY HEAD FUCKING HURTS, YOU TOTAL BASTARD!
OK, lemme calm myself down a bit here, you can tell I was irate about this band, in fact, I found out later that night that it was fronted by Jim Jones from 80’s psychedelic garage outfit Thee Hypnotics who I used to like back in the day, but these days, they are shite. Period. Thankfully with 20 mins between them fucking off, The Sword took to the stage to deliver some real music.
They were laid back and took every song in their stride with ease. They were tight, but they didn’t have beards like you would have pictured once you heard their debut album for the first time. They don’t throw blood everywhere; in fact they don’t even speak much. Texan singer JD Cronise is a man that makes the heaviest music and then relishes in it. Somewhere under that mop of hair, he is having the heaviest time of his life, but none of us can really see it, we can just hear it!
They play through Age of Winters with style and are a tight unit for start to finish, covering classic songs such as the mighty Barael’s Blade, the crushing blows of Freya, the instrumental medieval beauty of Iron Swan, that churns into a raging sea oh so wonderfully, and the instrumental discharge of March of the Lor with all of its stabbing charges. This band has every bit of ground covered, and talking of covers, they ended the show with 2. The first unrecognizable to mine and Sherry’s ears and pretty dull all the same, but then they came out with a stabbing rendition of Led Zeppelin’s “Immigrant Song” where Cronise sang the words “The hammer of the gods will drive our ships to new lands”….And guess what? They sure did…..
With The Sword taking the bull by the horns and my head now mangled from high grade skunk and Guinness, Nebula came on stage and carried on where the Texans had left off. They love getting wasted but despite the rush of blood to their heads they came up with a tune for everyone. Stoner rock is, I suppose a fad that went down about 10 years ago, I guess the words are still used, as they are perfect. You get stoned, you nod and rock out, and all done in a 70’s way that pleases.
But when vocalist/guitarist Eddie Glass and drummer Ruben Romano founded the group after leaving desert rock pioneers Fu Manchu they knew what they wanted out of life and they got it. I personally prefer the heavier induced rush of bands like The Sword, High on Fire and Mastodon as they are fucking heavy and have an evil side that appeals to my sick, aural demands, whereas Nebula who have been in the forefront of this scene from the beginning have opted for a much more garage based, poppier sound, especially on their new album Apollo. This album is a good record and you should definitely check it out, they played a few new ones and some classics and we got more stoned and almost passed out.
Tonight they delivered a decent show, even though they were as wasted as we were, and that is why I can’t remember any song titles other than the 3 covers of Jumpin’ Jack Flash by the Rolling Stones, I Need Somebody by The Stooges and Suffrajet City by David Bowie! It was a great night, my head exploded and has not been the same since, so well worth the money, but The Sword took the honours tonight as they are the fresh kids on the block with a whole lotta skulls to crack, go find them and fast..