Tuesday, 26 July 2011

July 11

On the Death Decks this month:

Tree Of Sores
Iron Witch - Single Malt
Lifer - Cursing Them Out
Thorns - Stigma Diabolicum
Sabbat (UK) - History of a Time To Come
Emperor - In the Nightside Eclipse
Masacre - Ola de Violencia
Hadez - Extreme Badness on the World
Storm - Nordavind
Hateful Abandon - Move
Peste Noir - L'Ordure à l'état Pur

Monday, 25 July 2011

Damnation 2011: "The Cat" Is Back

English thrashers EVILE and Finnish folk metallers TURISAS are the latest names added to the DAMNATION FESTIVAL 2011 bill.

The duo - who will play the Jagermeister Stage at Leeds University Union on Saturday, November 5 - are joined by the progressive death of XERATH and a unique, one-off showing of A MAN CALLED CATTEN performing a Medulla Nocte.

Paul Catten said: "After listening to the Medulla Nocte albums for the first time in many years, I knew I had to play these songs one last time.

"A Man Called Catten is a tribute to this material, and my chance to do them justice...playing them as they were meant to be played; live, fast and very loud. I'm ecstatic to be able to perform them at Damnation where I have great memories from previous performances, and this is the one and only time you will hear a set comprising of nothing but Nocte tracks. Relive your youth…the fucking Cat is back!"

Festival director Gavin McInally added: "Evile opened Damnation Festival when we still called Manchester home and following their meteoric rise - which is sure to continue with their new album - it's fantastic to finally have them back at the festival, adding a much needed dose of thrash.

Turisas will no doubt be a surprise addition to many fans but when men with swords tell you they need a home for a night, you throw open your doors! We're looking forward to a battle with some beers at Damnation as they trek across the country on their UK tour.

"Xerath are a certain to kick-off proceedings in style while the prospect of seeing Paul Catten tearing through Medulla Nocte classics at his vicious best is going to leave the rest of the Terrorizer Stage will a difficult set to follow!"

Tickets are on sale, priced £29 and are available from See TicketsTicketline and Leeds Tickets

Tickets are also now available the official Damnation site and Facebook via Ticketscript

For more information visit the official Damnation Festival sites:
Web || Facebook || Twitter || Myspace


Nice work, Damnation gang! Turisas are a favourite of ours - well of SJW's at least - check out this pic of him and Warlord roaring at a camera phone at Bloodstock a couple of years back:

Photo: Warlord getting bothered by a bald Scouser.
More of that Viking shit will fit the bill nicely!

Plus the return of Paul Catton (Murder One, Medulla Nocte, Lazarus Blackstar, The Sontaran Experiment, etc, etc!) - We haven't seen the big C in action since his gig in Liverpool back in March '08 when touring with Gallhammer. And he is playing a set of Medulla Nocte stuff too... All Our Friends Are Dead! Hell, let's even dare to hope that he wears the same stage outfit he donned for the afore-mentioned Liverpool gig too.

Sunday, 24 July 2011

Iron Witch - Single Malt EP

Single Malt EP
Witch Hunter Records

New out on Witch Hunter Records is the debut EP from Liverpool sludgers IRON WITCH.

What we have here are five tracks of downtuned fuzzy riffage, like a more accessible Charger or Weedeater.

Unlike labelmates Tree of Sores who have a uniquely British sound, IW go for the more in-vogue NOLA style sludge that we've come to know and love over the 23 years since Eyehategod formed,

Opener A .45 to Pay the Rent goes straight into some EHG style stomping, and sets the scene for the rest of the EP, with a bass-heavy fuzzy crawl, moving into the more upbeat Single Malt, which contains a repetitive, tortuous riff towards the end. The drawn out hangover claustrophobia of Booze Blues sticks to the ol' sludge maxim that if a riff is half decent it's the only one a track really needs so run with it and jam it. Seven minute closing track The Cruelty of Mankind starts off at a snail's pace, seemingly crossing over into more doomy territory for a while before moving back onto more familiar sludge ground about two and a half minutes on, albeit with a more metallic, punky edge, something I feel they do just as well if not better than just the straight ahead sludge stuff and would love to hear more of in the future!
Iron Witch will be playing the following dates soon; so get along and see 'em.

Tue, Jul 26 7:00 pm The Caledonia Liverpool
w/ Crows, Curb Crawl, GWC + Black Veins

Thu, Aug 4 7:00 pm Zanzibar Liverpool
w/ Entropy, El Schlong, The Bendal Interlude + Scare Tactics

Sat, Aug 6 7:00 pm Terrorizer Grindhouse @ The Snooty Fox Wakefield
w/ The Prophecy, Iron Void + Poison Dwarf

Fri, Aug 19 7:30 pm EP Release Show @ The Caledonia
w/ The Bendal Interlude, Zangief + Gurt

Mon, Aug 22 8:00 pm Green Door Store
w/ Enos + Gurt

Sat, Sep 3 7:00 pm Asylum 2 Birmingham
w/ Magma Rise + Iron Void

Friday, 15 July 2011


We now also have a tumblr page at http://theeclaw1986.tumblr.com/ because, well, we have five years worth of "behind the scenes" type photos that nobody's ever seen, and we haven't seen ourselves for years, and would just clog this page up if we posted them on here.
So, follow the link if you're interested in seeing us drunken all over Europe!

And what do you mean, "Why 1986?"!

Thursday, 14 July 2011

Lifer - Cursing them Out

Label: House of Doom

When you're like us, and you're of a certain age, and you've been a metalhead for more of your life than you haven't been a metalhead, you qualify as a lifer.

LIFER, from Swansea, certainly are that.
Featuring members of such luminaries as Acrimony, Rectify and Black Eye Riot (I fucking loved that band, especially No Hope, No Future, No Worries!) have an impeccable pedigree, and meld together all their influences on debut Cursing Them Out, which sounds just like a gang of lifelong metalheads recording an album. They couldn't have called the band anything else!  There's everything here, from Crowbar-esque sludge riffery, to some COC sounding grooves, and a feel like a more modern version of Exhorder thrashing in parts.

With a band bringing together such experience and distilling it onto CD there would be room for it to not quite work, but this album never lets up, and never hits any flat points, it's all go, all the time.Web and Roy knock out some top riffs, like I say able to go from thrash to groove to sludge effortlessly, Dibble and Greg are a rhythmic force to be reckoned with Greg's drumming in particular make me raise my eyebrows and try to tap my feet along to Reach, which also saw me headbanging around the living room.  I keep doing this to Broken Bones too, from around 2:36 to the end.

When I was a 13 year old, I'd have killed for this album, I'd have worn the tape out in my walkman, staggering home from the woods full of warm cider..
I don't have to kill for it now, but I'll always be full of warm cider, and I might just wear the CD out because this week I've realised... I AM A LIFER.


The Devil's Church All-dayer.
Venue: Rio's Bradford
Line up: Druganaut/The Dead Ressurected/Domes of Silence/Severed Heaven/Arkham Witch/The Aftermath/Sigiriya/Ravens Creed

Last weekend we made the short trip over to Bradford to see a hellish lineup of bands at Rio's.
I was personally very excited because three of my favourite, and I feel most exciting, bands in the UK were going to be playing, and so it was that we arrived in West Yorkshire to a sountrack of Deep purple, Celtic Frost and a display of glorious sunshine, full of Theakston's Old Peculier.  Well, I was at least.

We arrived in time to go for a little stroll around, have a drink in The Empress and then a few more (ahem...can you see where this is going?) in Rios before the first band come on, Druganaut.
Filthy, downtuned, Northeast sludge that makes me feel even hotter and more uncomfortable than I am in the upstairs tin box of Rio's. Most enjoyable, although I don't seem to have any photos? Anyway, check out their page on Soundcloud for their EP Shake Your Bones.

Next up, The Dead Resurrected.

This was the first time I'd seen or heard them, playing some awesome, downtuned sludge and roll, The DEAD Ressurected feature an almost who's-who of metal, and make a damn good noise doing it. Really enjoyed the swampy grooves on offer here, well worth checking out!  Total filthdoom!

I now have a confession to make, after this set finished we went off in search of food and what have you, after all we had been on the road since early in the morning and needed real ale and felafel.
To this end, I missed Domes of Silence completely, and only got back around thirty seconds away from the end of Severed Heaven's set, sorry about that, we owe both of you a proper review.
But! We did venture over to the 1 in 12 in search of food and managed to get a guerrilla photo shoot of Yorkshire Anarcho punks Trauma Unit rehearsing....

Go and check them out if, like me, you like your punk a bit crusty!!!

Anyway, we had three of our favourite bands in the UK coming up after this, starting with the true metal stylings of Arkham Witch.  They play a brand of metal that is rooted firmly in the underground, but with enough of that unique quality that means they can literally appeal across genres.  From the punky NWOBHM singalong Let England Prevail through some more melancholy and dark tracks like Suicide 75, I enjoyed their set greatly.

Whenever I shake my head at another glossy metal mag with bands like the Black Veiled Brides on the cover, I console myself with the fact that my heavy metal is safe in the hands of people like Arkham Witch.

The Aftermath - Again, we completely missed these!! Apologies guys!! I can't even find a link to them anywhere online, any help would be appreciated!

Sigiriya were the next band I got to see, I'd been looking forward to seeing them for ages, and they were kind enough to let us hear their album Return to Earth before almost anybody else.
They sound so tight on the CD, and they ain't no slouches live either.  Sometimes bands have a problem transferring that to the stage but these guys are seamless together, my head was bobbing, my feet were tapping, my fists kept going up in the air involuntarily, I must have looked like I was having some kind of seizure to the untrained eye. awesome, you should all check them out if you haven't already.
One of the best bands in the UK right now, jamming your life to fuck.

Next up were Ravens Creed, who are, quite literally, my favourite band in the UK right now, and one of Thee Claw's definite favourites.  They come on stage and just literally tear through all their stuff; it's a good few songs in before newest member Al talks to the crowd.  Ravens Creed are an absolute fucking powerhouse onstage.
It's like I've jumped in a tardis and gone back in time to watch Venom play in a Geordie boozer.
Al patrols the stage like an angry doberman spitting out lyrics and rattling your fillings with roars, and its an absolute crying shame that there were so few people here to see this.
Panzer Maniac is the standout track of the set for me, and I can tell you this much, after they have played at the Live Evil festival, they will be talked about in hushed tones like Aura Noir et al, in short they will be everyone's favourite "true" band, and quite rightly so. Fraser and Jay fit together seamlessly, Jay's skills are as ever, ridiculous behind the kit, and Steve shreds right over them and together, they sound so unmistakenly British.
I heard that Kam Lee heard Nestless and Wild and it's what prompted him to try to get Massacre back together recently.

Ravens Creed are going to be everywhere soon, and you probably heard it here first.
Good on you lads, hurry up and come back!

Wednesday, 13 July 2011

Black Breath, Manchester (UK) 12 July 2011

Bands: Black Breath / Black Mass / Minister Of Justice / Poison Planet
Style: Thrash/Black/Punk
Venue: The Star & Garter, Manchester (UK)
Date: 12th July 2011
Promoter: Mutiny Events

How's it going people? SJW here once again with some photos from last night's BLACK BREATH show in Manchester (at our favourite of all venues, the Star & Garter). Although I am not the resident reviewer in our family (that would be Patchie), I thought that I would at least write you a few words about this great show from close-to-the-beginning of the current Black Breath European summer tour. We had the pleasure of seeing these guys right here (at the very same venue) back in November, in the depths of an English winter. Last night's show could not have felt more different though. At some points towards the end of the night the heat in the venue was close to 35°C according to the gauge on my watch (which is around 95°F for our American friends out there!)... and by the way there's no air-con in the S&G and not much in the way of ventilation either (though a couple of us did manage to open a single window half way through the final set of the night). But that is all part of the charm of this particular venue... it's a fucking deafening cauldron of noise and heat! TURN IT UP!!

The show went down very well with a great turn out, though the crowd didn't go ape-shit as it normally might in Manchester (let's blame the heat), though the Black Breath encore did seem to get a nice reaction.

The rest of the bands on the bill played nice sets too - Thee Claw is particularly taken with local outfit MINISTER OF JUSTICE, who were on stage early but made a definite impact with the set. Check them out here.

Okay, that's enough words. Here's some BLACK BREATH photos from the show they played here at the Star & Garter, Manchester, 12th July 2011.

Monday, 11 July 2011

Photo of the Day: Pissman @ Hellfest 2011

Spotted this gentleman (and his "bag") in the crowd during Church Of Misery's set at Hellfest. Simply had to snap some photos of him "in full flow":

We have just been having a gentle peruse of the photos that SJW took over at that fest this year (photos that we are yet to have a proper look through by the way) and this crazy bastard randomly appears in about half a dozen of the CoM set's crowd photos, in each of them he is liberally waving his satchel full of urine around while dancing like a nut to "El Padrino" while the rest of the crowd around him do there best to stay the fuck away from him, in case the bag rips open as he flings it about wildly.

If you happen to know Pissman in real life, be sure to tell him that Thee Claw asked to pass a message to him. And that message is: "Piss off!"

Sunday, 10 July 2011

Metal Will Never Die

Today would have been Ronnie James Dio's sixty-ninth birthday.
Thee Claw were lucky enough to see him twice in the space of a year, with Heaven and Hell Black Sabbath and with Dio.  We miss you man.


Ar Eh.

We were lucky enough to see him reunited with Lemmy at Donington a few years ago....I think we may even have a video somewhere....fucking hell...speechless....

Wednesday, 6 July 2011

Live Evil Festival 2011

Live Evil Festival is an International Heavy Metal Festival presenting underground Black metal, Thrash, Speed, Death, Heavy Metal, Metal Punk and Doom bands from around the world. The bands who play it are picked by Fenriz and taken from his Darkthrone band of the week blog. The festival remains 100% committed to the bands who play it. “As Wolves among sheep we have wandered” - Darkthrone 1991.

Live Evil Fest 2011 - London

Link - http://www.liveevilfestival.com/

Thee Claw says: ‎22nd & 23rd October 2011 - London. We will be there. Hopefully some of you guys will be too! Hell yeah.... I mean, just look at the damn line-up! In Solitude, Age Of Taurus, Morbus Chron, Witchgrave - Aura Noir. Plus our good buddies RAVENS FUCKING CREED! This is a line-up not to be missed.

Fenriz's band of the week selections, all in one place!

Monday, 4 July 2011


Hey gang... SJW here. Hardcore punk band TERROR play Manchester here in the UK tomorrow. I saw them a few weeks back at the Hellfest festival in France, where they instigated anarchy. I kinda want to see them again tomorrow, but I somehow imagine that it's going to quickly descend into chaos! (Pic below is from the Hellfest show... that dude's stage-dive was more like a stage-jump though!)

Still tempted to go along though! Terror always put on one hell of a gig.

Sunday, 3 July 2011