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Machine Head/Caliban – Southampton

Posted on February 12, 2008

“The second show of the UK part of the Machine Head tour was at Southampton Guildhall. After being on tour for the better part of a year, Machine Head would be at full strength coming in to Christmas. Unfortunately, due to train problems, I missed the first half of Caliban, but what I saw of them was very impressive. Playing a lot of stuff of their new album, í¢ä‰åñThe Opposite From Withiní¢ä‰åŒ, they did a good job of warming up the crowd. An impressive Wall of Death became one of their new trademarks near the end of their set. Caliban are a band that many people will look forward to seeing again. God Forbid were not as impressive as they were on the NWOAHM tour. They played an ok set but were not all that entertaining. The whole show infact could have done with God Forbid being the first band on. At one point, they asked the crowd to shout out together, í¢ä‰åñFuck George Bushí¢ä‰åŒ. This was a lame attempt to win over a crowd that already had respect for them. Overall for God Forbid, good music, but not anything we haven’t heard before. By this point, the crowd was feeling the electricity of the moment. Machine Head were about to come on next. A í¢ä‰åñMachine Fucking Headí¢ä‰åŒ chant started long before the band came on. Even when the sound check crew came on to test the instruments, the crowd were cheering. The sound crew left the stage and the lights went out. A thundering roar came from the crowd, it was deafening. The almighty roar evolved into the í¢ä‰åñMachine Fucking Headí¢ä‰åŒ chant. Then the bands legendary classical war theme tune began to play, with blue lights shining all over around the Guildhall. This blended into the Imperium intro, then, í¢ä‰åñHere Me Nowí¢ä‰åŒ, the crowd went into a frenzy. As usual, Machine Head were at the top of their game. They played classics like ‘The Blood, The Sweat, The Tears’ and ‘Old’, as well as stuff of their new-ish album ‘Through the Ashes of Empires’, like ‘Days Turn Blue to Grey’ and ‘ Descend The Shades of Night’. I was right in the middle of the pit for most of their set, and it is the most brutal pit ive ever been in. They played ‘The Burning Red’ for the calm down period and lighters were in the air. They had their interval bit, where they went of stage and the fans would chant, an obvious encore. They did a cover of Pantera ‘Broken’ and Rob shared some booze with the crowd. Then came Davidian. í¢ä‰åñLET FREEDOM RING WITH A SHOT GUN BLAST!!!í¢ä‰åŒ. And the pit spread out into a massive circle pit. More crazy moshers joined in for this, half the venue became a war zone. Crowd surfers were flying and people were head banging. This was Machine Heads second time playing in Hampshire, they played in Portsmouth around this time last year. For many of us, we had seen them before, but their shows always please us, and for those who saw Machine Head for the first time, this was the show to be at.” By Andy Bartlett


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