1865, Southampton

Diamond Head

Back in late seventies in the deepest darkest depths of the West Midlands, a band was born that would write music that would go on to influence many other bands to follow. As a major part of the early eighties New Wave Of British Heavy metal movement, Diamond Head went on to give the then (proggy) rock scene a much needed shot in the arm. Also having one of the biggest and most popular bands in the world covering your tracks hasn’t done any harm in keeping them on the road and in the metal public’s consciousness.

The evening kicked off with Winter’s Edge from Chichester who make a damn good fist of it considering it was a Wednesday night and most of the crowd haven’t arrived yet. Lead singer Charlotte Jones let her vocal ability shine as the band delivered their symphonic power metal with an enthusiasm that forced those that were there to pay attention, thus garnering a few new fans on the night. They blasted through their set with heaviness and style, leaving those that managed to catch them very satisfied.

Winter's Edge
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Next up were Killit, the London based Hard rockers who have been supporting Diamond Head on the British leg of their tour. 80’s style riffs and energy delivered with in-yer-face attitude and swagger. They lift the 1865 crowd up a notch and put on a great show that got better as they played each song, making the end of their set a bittersweet experience, due to the fact that you wanted to see Diamond Head but you also wanted Killit to play on for longer. Definitely a band to catch if you like your rock ‘classic’ with a modern feel.

Killit 1234567

As Diamond Head take to the stage the anticipation is high, not least the fact that the bands dressing room is at the front of the venue forcing the band to walk through the crowd to get to the stage, but rather than rush past everybody legendary guitarist and founder Brian Tatler stops by the merch table to chat and sign things before going on, pure class. On stage the master gives us a schooling in the art of the riff, effortlessly playing the guitar and making it sound huge as Diamond Head’s other guitarist Andy “Abbz” Abberley is absent on the night.

But one man does not a band make and the exceptional vocal talents of Rasmus Andersen leading the attack make the band a visually impressive force live. He is suffering from a cold and a sore throat so if he’s this good when he’s ill, I really have to catch him when he’s on top form.

Diamond Head
Diamond Head 12345678910

Watching longtime member Karl Wilcox providing the engine on the drums and pushing the music along with a pace and energy was an experience in itself, as he beat the living crap out of his kit. Complementing the pounding drums was the steady bass of Dean Ashton, providing a rock-solid foundation and adding to the live experience with a very energetic performance.

This was a gig that I had been looking forward to and it didn’t disappoint, Diamond Head might be an old band but Diamond Head 2018 have the chops to expand on the old glories and carve out a new niche for themselves. I hope a new album is in the offing and a new tour to follow. Outstanding!

Set List
Diamond Head
Shout at the Devil
Borrowed Time
Dead Reckoning
In the Heat of the Night
Set My Soul on Fire
Come Alive
Call Me
To Heaven
From Hell
Knight of the Swords
Lightning to the Nations
Shoot Out the Lights
It’s Electric
The Prince
Am I Evil?

Sucking My Love


Words and photos by Dan O’Gara.

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