Entombed A. D. / The Gravitators / S.S.S. / Foetal Juice @ The Roadhouse, Manchester 11/11/2014

Entombed A.D. - UK/Ire Tour 2014

I don’t normally do gig reviews for two reasons: 1. I don’t go to very many gigs any more, and 2. I usually like to have a fair few drinks if and when I do get to one. However, somehow I find I’ve managed not erase all memory of last night’s trip to the Roadhouse from my head (which does nevertheless have a fairly large bruise on one side of it) so I’ll try and get something down before it all starts to go.

I got an email a couple of months back from one of those websites where you put in a list of band names and your postcode and they alert you if anyone’s playing near you. This email said that Entombed A.D. were playing in Manchester, and the date turned out to be my birthday. Couldn’t have worked out better really. The last I’d heard Corrupt Moral Altar and Hang the Bastard were supposed to be supporting but when I arrived (madly early because I’d had another email saying doors were now at 6 instead of 7pm) it turned out they’d been replaced by three other bands.

First up were Bury’s own Foetal Juice playing daft Porn/Gore Grind with titles like Big Trouble in Little Vagina, Service Station Masturbation, and Brewkakke (“a revenge song about having a wank in your boss’s cup of tea”). They were tight (leave it!), fun, and vocalist Sam Read had a more than decent range from growl to scream.

Next came Mersey Skate Thrashers S.S.S. who lived up to their name, as always. They fired out precision machined little nuggets of Crossover Thrash at a rapid pace, a couple of stand-outs being Inside The Box, and Dismantle The Dream.

At this point the nice draft beer I was drinking ran out and I ended up on cider (it was that or Guinness and, no offence to the Roadhouse intended, I didn’t imagine their Guinness was going to do me any good).

The Gravitators provided a slightly jarring change of pace at this stage with their 70s inspired Swedish hard rock. With Ozzy vocal-effects dialled up to 11 and riffs that chugged along well enough, I still had no real complaints; they did what they did and they did it well. Fair play to them.

By now there’s no draft cider left and I’m on bottles of Bulmers.

Finally, at about quarter to ten, with maybe 150 people in the room, Entombed A.D. took to the stage. I’ve been a fan of Entombed since 1993’s Wolverine Blues (which I’m the first to admit is far from their best album) and I think last night’s gig was the tenth time I’ve seen them live since then. Except, of course, this wasn’t Entombed, it was Entombed A.D. – whom some have somewhat sneeringly dubbed L.G. Petrov’s Entombed cover band. They came out to the galloping string into of Back to the Front opener Pandemic Rage and launched seamlessly into the song proper. Like an internally-made-snake-bite-filled 36 year old dickhead I launched myself into the 20 strong pit and spent the next hour and a bit cheerfully getting battered. I lost my voice. I got kicked in the head. I had a lovely birthday, I really did. Left Hand Path sounded amazing, Chief Rebel Angel brilliant too… there were lots of others between those two but, you know, cider and head-kicking…

Entombed A.D. are a four-piece, as Entombed were before Alex Hellid’s departure, and my only criticism/complaint of the gig would be that I definitely felt the lack of a rhythm guitar at certain points, particularly in the older songs. Other than that it was a great performance and the Roadhouse – which inexplicably, I’ve never been to before – is a great little venue. They just need to make sure they don’t run out of draft ale next time, please.

Scribed by: John Reppion