Devildriver and Ministry at London’s Forum : Live Review
22nd August 2016, 16:30
Posted by Tristan
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Forming somewhat of a bond together from their local habitats, the unlikely pairing of both DevilDriver and Ministry would seem like a caustic affair. Bringing together the groove Metal stylings of DevilDriver against the pneumatic puncturing of Ministry yet the two team up for a special run of five UK shows to test England’s mettle. Having performed all over the country previous both bands are seasoned veterans in the live arena so what exactly happens when both bands team up for a head to head assault on London.

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As the colder winds begin to blow outside the now archetypal Forum in Kentish Town revellers are arriving for the first in a double whammy of distortion. Having just released their brand new record Trust No One, the Devil is back in town after a period of absence owing to the revival of Coal Chamber. A sleepy crowd is immediately shaken awake by the arrival of Dez and co as the band studiously strut on stage understanding their clientele exactly launch into The Fury of Our Maker’s Hand classic “End Of The Line“. Instantly satisfying the older generation of fans that grew up on this elementary Groove Metal record before launching into newer territory with “Daybreak”.

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Galvanising a new line up, after being put through rigorous testing after their US run with Hardcore heavy weights Hatebreed the latest incarnation of DevilDriver seems to be one of the best. With each member commanding their separate section of the stage coming together for the brotherly camaraderie during solos in “Clouds Over California” it’s surprising cuts like “Ruthless” that truly set the bar high particularly for those who fancy chewing a bit of the floor in the band’s remorseless circle pits. Incited of course by our California loving ring leader Dez Fafara who reliably belts out chorus after scathing chorus. Dipping into new material once again with “My Night Sky” the band are positively on fire with drummer Austin D’Amond hammering his kit relentlessly throughout the set before the grand finale,seeing the upstairs section of the forum coaxed into standing up, for the brutal “Meet The Wretched“. Doing more than proving themselves , as with Dez known for his esoteric ideologies believing in the art of reincarnation DevilDriver have been reborn into an ever tighter conglomerate of Metal that devastates just as much as it pin points it’s deadly accuracy.

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Renown for their truly intense aural assault Ministry are not for the fair weather gig goer. As the totalitarian state of Jourgensen descends the stage is adorned with somewhat autocratic trinkets. The ghoulish podium complete with skulls that is the residence to three different microphones, the semi nationalist banners sporting Ministry’s logo and the images of classic War propaganda along with the humming of songs that were used to incite warfare puts the audience right in Ministry’s crosshairs. As a defeating echo of “Hello Motherfuckers!” bursts out of the lifeless speakers instantly pricking up the audiences ears as the veritable army of white noise is mobilised “Hail To His Majesty“. Slowly filtering through each members stand as pillars to the caustic tones of Ministry’s sound. Before the final William Wallace-esque character sneaks onto the stage and the fuse is well and truly lit.

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The pace rarely lets up if at all throughout the band’s performance. The  slideshow of propaganda now replaced with absolutely mental imagery spanning the likes of Richard Pryor breaking down in a jittery pink hue to Clinton and Trump breathing fire. “Señor Peligro” receives a rapturous welcome as ever when barrelled out but it’s deeper classic cuts when the crowd truly loses their proverbial minds seeing the corrosive guitar tones melt their way into our psyche. Ironically despite their airtight precision the band give off an incredibly unstable air, giving them a sense of unpredictability particularly with the emotionless qualities of our instrumentalists reflecting the Industrial leanings of tracks the likes of “LiesLiesLies” Having had somewhat of an unstable relationship threatening to truly call it a day fans tonight relish in the opportunity to see this deafening beast engage. With machine like precision the band navigate each of the dour and destructive chords with distortion turned up well above the Spinal Tap norm of 11. Known for its stale, emotionless qualities Industrial as a genre can of ten be somewhat of a hard pill to swallow but with Ministry veritably kicking down the door, grabbing your jaw and shoving the pill down your throat the band are the undeniable kings of Industrial and with shows similar to this, with a kind of disturbing accuracy of truly shattering the soul long may they reign.