Entombed AD, The Graviators and Diesel King
@ The Underworld, London
November 14th 2014
Review & Photography by Graham Hilling
Yet another early start see a pretty sparse crowd for openers Diesel King from London. Orginially the support for Entombed AD was to be Hang the Bastard and Corrupt Moral Altar but due to a serious back injury, Tomas Hubbard from Hang the Bastard was unable to play, and illness similarly plagued Corrupt Moral Altar which meant the departure of both bands.
Replacements were found at the last minute – aforementioned Diesel King and the Graviators. Diesel King sound a bit like Pantera which is no bad recommendation.
Mark O’Regan on vocals dominates the small Underworld stage, a veritable man mountain and a great frontman as the band power through a short set of 6 songs, all of which show case the band very well.
Bludgeoning riffs get the small but appreciative crowd going and there is even some dancing in the footwell in front of the stage. The set coses with O’Regan in with the crowd, mixing it up nicely.
A fine way to start the evening indeed, check out the bands bandcamp page at dieselking.bandcamp.com/
Next up are stoner band, the Graviators from Sweden. Immediately settling into their own groove and apparently unaware of anyone watching for much of their time on stage (they really were engulfed by their own music) these guys didn’t really impress tbh.
The guitar sound had gone one notch past dirty to the point where the distortion was distorted if that makes sense! Very little definition in the sound for much of the set and songs that for me just went on too long to hold my interest.
At points, it just sounded like they were jamming (maybe they were….)
The music is punctuated by vocals from Niklas Sjöberg, which are the only brief respite from what can only be described as bit of a dirge. Occasionally the groove cuts through but all too often the music just doesn’t make the grade. Sorry.
By the time Entombed AD take to the stage the Underworld has filled up considerably, still not full but decent enough for sure. And no shortage of enthusiasm either, there is an air of expectation as the sound is fine tuned before they take to the stage.
And when that time comes, it’s like a whilwind. LG Petrov always looks like a man on the edge, no difference tonight and the band are in no mood to mess around. “Pandemic Rage” from the new album “Back to the Front” ignites the Underworld. After a quick “I for an Eye” we’re taken back in time for “Revel in Flesh”. This sits nicely actually with new material like “Second to None” and “The Underminer”.
Everything is played at breakneck speed, definitely a notch up from the recorded material, which, for me is not ideal, it interrupts some of the cool grooves and some of the songs just don’t flow so well. In addition to this, the dirty guitar sound is still, well, really fucking dirty! To the point where it just doesn’t cut like it should.
And, one guitar just leaves a big hole in many of the songs where there is a distinct rhythm and lead melody separation – these songs were written with two guitars in mind. This means the sound is thinner than it otherwise should be (I know they’ve been a four piece for parts of their history but it remains a fact that 2, in this case, is better than 1 imho!)
Still, this is the Entombed and these little problems aren’t going to make a real dent in either their enthusiasm, nor the crowds. “Stranger Aeons” sounds as good as ever, “Out of Hand” has everyone singing along and even some stage diving!
“Wolverine Blues” follows closely on its’ heels and marks the high point of the set. “Damn Deal Done” is a little bit too rocky for my taste but is still well received. The familiar beginning of “Left Hand Path” rings round the venue, and the marvellous bridge in the middle feels like an old friend.
“Supposed to Rot” has every head in the place nodding and by now the sound seems to have improved to the point where it actually sounds not half bad. “Abnormally Deceased” is next and is a great reminder of what a blinding album “Left Hand Path” is. So, a pretty impressive outing, especially given the fact the sound was pretty poor to start with.
Entombed AD Setlist