GIG REVIEW: RAGING SPEEDHORN, Gurt & Ten Foot Wizard Live At Camden, London
Few days ago I witnessed an amazing hardcore lineup with Ten Foot Wizard, Gurt and Raging Speedhorn. The show was an absolute success with all the bands playing respective crushing sets. Starting with Ten Foot Wizard, like the name implies, this band is perhaps best enjoyed with some of that Old Toby pipe-weed from Tolkien’s books. However, the four piece is very interesting to behold live. Mostly because everyone in the band seems to be totally immersed in the music. The singer Gary struts around like a guitar playing version of Les Claypool (Primus) and makes faces like he clearly knows something we don’t, while bassist Emlyn mostly hides behind his hair. We were also treated to a new song with the working title of “Turbo Dick”, hopefully both the song and the name will make it on to their next album.
While the Underworld in Camden slowly is filling up, Gurt goes on stage. They open with the hard hitting “Sludge Puppies” from the album Horrendosaurus. Singer Gareth Kelly seems to be struggling a bit at first, but after “Sophisticate” he’s really in to it! With “Soapfeast” the audience is starting to wake up and the entire band feeds off this. Bassist David Blakemore jumps around and guitarist Rich Williams headbangs! Gurt are trying to re-think the Christmas song format with the release of the classic Aled Jones tune “Walking in the Air”, and the audience gets to vote if we want to hear an old song or this new Christmas song cover. Well, how can we resist?! Have a listen to it, it differs a lot from the original. Their 35 minute set feels like it’s going way too fast and I would like to see them play a headliner set sometime in the future. Gurt finish off their short but intense set with the amply named song “Dudes with Beards”.
Raging Speedhorn: Now for the main attraction! The crowd is warmed up and waiting, and even as Raging Speedhorn walks out on stage, they are treated like kings. There is anticipation in the air and it feels like everyone in the audience is screaming at the top of their lungs. The band waste no time and like a kick to the face they start with “Deathrow Dogs”. Guitarist Jamie Thompson jumps around like a madman and I am inches from getting my head bashed in by his guitar. There is no standing still. “Dog Shit Blues” is next. Singers Frank Reagan and John Loughlin are dominating the stage, pushing the audience to give more sweat and blood, never to stand still.
There is a lot of beer drinking on stage, especially from vocalist Frank who probably is sponsored by Becks, in all my photos of him from the gig, the Becks logo is always angled towards the camera. A coincidence? I think not! Brilliant product placement. The band burns through “Superscud”, “Knives and Faces” and “Halfway to Hell” in a relentless anger and testosterone fuelled aggression! There is crowd surfing and stage diving going on and I bet a fair share woke up with bruises the next day, but that’s another story. The Underworlds stage is almost too small for this behemoth of a band and they make use of every inch of it. Security helps the crowd surfers get off the stage but several times the band themselves has to help as well. “Scrapin The Resin” is followed by “Hate Song” and I feel that it’s time for me to go to the back of the crowd. The bar is as empty as I’ve ever seen it on a gig and that is a very good grade for a band.
After a few more songs they finish with a brutal version of “Me and You Man” and walk out. Is it finished? If you’ve ever been to a gig, you know that’s usually not the case and this is no exception. Now it’s time for the encores and now we are treated to some classics! “The Gush” with its slow, almost groovy beginning feels like a cool breeze in the quite warm venue and with the following “Thumper” it feels like going back into hell again, but in a good way. After two encores played, they rip into “Fuck the Voodooman” and we are nearing the end of the show. I know because I had a look at the setlist. The last song for the evening is “High Whore” and it’s complete with one of the longest endings in music history, even longer than an Yngwie Malmsteen solo. And just when everyone thinks that the show is over, Ben Ward from Orange Goblin walks out and says. I just want to say, how good is it to see the kings of the UK underground back? Give it up for f*****g Raging Speedhorn everybody! You want one more? And the band starts playing “Iron Cobra” before it’s over, for real this time. This was a first for me so I had no idea what to expect, but Raging Speedhorn blew me away with intensity and power, I will definitely see them again!
See our full gallery of pictures from the gig here!