MUTATION – October 2017 – Newcastle Riverside
By Gordon Armstrong (G’s Gig Shots)
I remember a graphic novel I read (Hellblazer/Sandman I’m not sure) where a guy does a devils deal to be creative and one of the last panels the twist is the guy going mad because he just can’t stop writing down his constant flow of ideas on paper, walls floor etc. I sometimes think Ginger is like this to a lesser extent. The number of projects he sometimes has on the go and the opposite ends of the spectrum that they fall in. This year he has released a solo country album and with Mutation a black metal power trio a new album called Dark Black from which most of the set is taken.
The band are made up of Scott Lee Andrews (exit Internation ) on bass and vox, Denzil (Young Legionnaire) drums, vox and Ginger guitar bass and vox. This is their first tour as Mutation but you’d think they’d been doing it for ages the way they gel together. Ginger paces the stage in front of his amps between tracks like a fighter waiting for the next round. Not sure if it’s nervous energy or just the brutal riff he is about to take everyone’s face off with!
The stage set is a huge back line of mismatched amps and cabinets and stage front and centre is the drumkit no riser or rear position, Denzil is on the lip of the stage flanked by the other two following his every lead. The man is a monster behind the kit I walked past in the pit and just the air from the mic hole in the kick drum (not the volume just the air) felt like a punch to the chest! His drumming is just ferocious which is totally fitting for this METAL that is being played at an incredible volume but not distorting.
I’m not gonna lie, I went to the gig not really knowing what to expect other than it was “Gingers black metal” project but by the 4th track I was totally hooked by the energy and almost hypnotic effect of it. Don’t be thinking it is all just a noise though there are still melodies and hooks in each of these head kickings (‘Friday Night Drugs for example),
It’s the last two tracks and album closers ‘Dogs and Deterioration’ that absolutely just put you through the wringer. With only a quick “thanks ” through the set it’s over and the sadly small crowd were left wondering what had just happened (in a good way). No idea why a lot of the fanbase didn’t turn out tonight for this it will remain a mystery to me especially as it was home ground but those that were there saw a band on fire and even in his tour diary Ginger says the band will possibly never play as good together as they did tonight.
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