Bangor’s Railway Institute opened it’s doors once again to receive North Wales Metal’s latest Rock and Roll train, in what was billed as a triple header but unfortunately now down to two.
Openers for the evening were local lads Run Down, who I hadn’t seen live for a while. The band have a well mixed set of classic Metal covers and a few of their own thrown in for good measure, all of which are well received by tonight’s crowd.Frontman Matthew Newbigging, whilst being a very competent vocalist, comes into his own when stepping away from the mic and concentrating on guitar, delivering excellent solo’s and riffs for fun. A great start to the nights proceedings with a performance that shows good promise for the bands future.
Headliners Stormbringer needed no introduction to the gathered throng, glancing around and spotting Viking Skull tee shirts kind of gave the game away really. Listening to vocalist Mike Stockley performing his pre show vocal warm up really gives you an insight into how immense the mans range is, and hearing him at full throttle on stage is really quite something. Whilst not wishing to compare him to Bruce Dickinson, in a way, he delivers in a similar vein, punchy, powerful vocals with the ability to hold a note until the lungs burst, an excellent frontman if ever there was.
Dom Wallace on guitar is just about as Metal as it gets, both in looks as well as performance, it’s almost as if the guitar is plugged directly into Dom rather than a socket, such is the fluidity and emotion in his playing, and in Ash Smith he has the perfect foil, the two bouncing solos off of each other as if there’s no tomorrow. The engine room is manned by Darren McCullagh on Bass and Jon Paul Quantrill on drums, making this a pretty damn fine line up to behold.
The set flies by way to quickly, songs such as “Grinder” bringing the roof down, a fantastic show from a top class band, what a way to finish an evening. Or so you think, after a half hour or so of chatting to fans and partaking of refreshments the band decide the’re not finished and promptly announce that they’d like to do a second set, oh ok then, if you insist! How many bands in the modern era would do that? Another example of whilst these guys are alive and kicking Metal is in safe hands.
And to top it all off, I won a prize in the raffle, roll on November, when we can do it all again.