(review by steve rastin)

Metal? All sounds the same to me, mate!!!

Leaving aside the irony of the above statement coming from a somewhat chavvy acquaintance of mine whose idea of “bangin’ choons” do indeed sound all the same, he nonetheless articulated a view held by many outside the metal fraternity.

However, if the recent Metallic KO gig at Caskeys in Rhyl proved one thing (and it proved several), it is that metal today is a multi-splendoured beast with the three bands on the bill quite distinct from each other.

First up were Anglesey quartet Coryphaeus, whose name is rooted in Egyptology, a subject that the band members are apparently quite passionate about.

On first examination they seem to fit fairly comfortably into the contemporary metal template with alternating gruff/shrill vocals laid over bulldozing, propulsive rhythms but their Egyptian leanings manifest themselves in the solos whose North African influences give the sound quite a proggy feel and is all the better for it.

Coryphaeus received a warm but polite reception but things started to really heat up when Burn The Skyline bounced onto the stage – yes that’s a proper stage with drum riser, not a space on the floor!!!

The obvious comparison to make is with Enter Shikari, not least because of the dominating presence of keyboards in the mix, something that became more obvious when a busted guitar string led to the keyboard player leading the audience into an impromptu communal go at Eiffel 65s “I’m Blue”.

Technical difficulties resolved, it was on through a blistering set that ended with a moshpit in full swing and untroubled by any possible interventions by over enthusiastic door staff – the venue has wisely briefed their men to let the audience enjoy themselves and instead station themselves downstairs to keep the local chavs out of the venue.

If BTS were received ecstatically, the reception afforded Drederick Tatum verged on the orgasmic and little wonder, given the ferocity and brutality of their set.

The Chester quintet feature The Shed, ex of Impaled Existence in their ranks, and it’s easy to trace the lineage from one band to the other.

The singer is a similar beast to Portrait of a Lifetime’s Jamie Burne in the sense that he stomps and stalks a territory well beyond the stage area, yelping, growling, snarling, stomping and occasionally singing the odd line as well as his cohorts blast the audience into sweaty submission.

They even managed to incorporate an 8 Mile- style rap face-ff between a mate and one of the BTS crew towards the end of proceedings, all of which served to underline just how inaccurate the whole “metal all sounds the same” jibe is.

The venue needs to work on its decor and lighting but the sound was loud and crystalline, hopefully consigning the bad old days of bands sounding like they were singing through a duvet to the history books forever.

The Metallic KO nights will now continue apace – watch this space, as the local press might say (if the twats could be bothered to cover anything outside of the Pavilion Theatre!!!).