Talking Heads, Southampton

The Ghost Inside

When four of the finest metal giants from outside the UK tour together, there is only one outcome…pure chaos. Boasting a mouth-watering line-up, The Talking Heads hosted a night in which every band deserved the headline slot. It’s exciting shows like this that keep the scene alive, so tonight was always expected to deliver on many levels.

Opening proceedings were German giants, Caliban, whose endless quality made it simple to understand why they possess such a loyal following in this country. Exhibiting crushing vocal work, huge choruses with soaring clean vocals and enormous guitar tones, the likes of “Devil’s Night” from their latest record highlighted a euphoric display from a band who will without a doubt remain a favourite in the metal scene. It was fair to say that the number of times that I found myself uncontrollably shouting “FUCK” during certain points of their set summarises their brilliance. Virtually flawless and emphatic performers; Caliban are one of the best bands around.

Following sheer disbelief at the quality of tonight’s openers, I Killed The Prom Queen took us all down under for yet another blistering offering. Clearly boasting a greater following, the crowd took no time at all to recognise the brutality on display, with the pit starting to boil. Their front man, Jamie Hope fed off the presence of the energetic crowd, allowing IKTPQ to deliver a performance laden with outlandish breakdowns and brutish vocal work. Despite their set being short and sweet, it was an immaculate display of ferocious grit and sharp precision that will stay firmly in my memory.

Despite the undeniable quality of the previous acts, The Devil Wears Prada stole the show for me. Fuelled by unrelenting aggression, whilst effortlessly showcasing their highly polished delivery, the band took the evening to new heights through their spine-shattering breakdowns and circle pit inducing rhythm. Their performance offered a distinct quality which is tough to decipher, but whatever it is that sets them aside from the rest; my god, it’s working. Despite having their set cut short when the PA was switched off (most likely due to every band having their own drums), the band finished their set triumphantly, relying on the busted lungs of their passionate following to fill the venue with the sounds of an unforgettable performance. Ultimately, I could watch this band every night and still beg for more.

The Ghost Inside

Closing a night of such class is an unholy task, but luckily The Ghost Inside are masters of their art. Orchestrating utter chaos from the minute “Engine 45” begun, the band proved that they are at the peak of their genre, with mountainous front man, Jonathan Vigil grinning from ear to ear, as his lyrics were screamed back with pure venom. Complete with stage invasion, their set delivered limitless power and catalysed the packed venue to tear each other apart, limb from limb. Even their older material saw an exhilarating response, but it was offerings from their latest record which possessed the fluency and professionalism to set them apart from the others in their wake.

Regardless of which band you came for tonight, it would be almost impossible to argue that it wasn’t an incredible night all round. Each band tore the intimate surroundings from front to back, with a refreshing buzz that we all too often don’t feel at shows in the South. However, as long as outstanding nights such as these exist, I for one will be perfectly happy for years to come.


Words by George Fullerton.

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