Guernsey gig promoters The Future Shock presented a night of heavy metal on Saturday 26th January at The Fermain Tavern featuring three bands from the Channel Islands; Stan Smith, Brutus Stonefist and Iron Cobra.
Stan Smith made their much-anticipated return to our shores following a series of gigs last year which saw them build a dedicated fan base on the island and, alongside Brutus Stonefist and Iron Cobra it made for one of the most straight up heavy metal nights to take place in Guernsey in quite some time.
My review was also published in The Guernsey Press on Saturday 2nd Feburary 2013:
For their first show of 2013 local promoters The Future Shock put on a night of some of the heaviest music in the Channel Islands featuring three all out heavy metal acts.
First to take to the stage were on-again, off-again southern metallers Iron Cobra. Following a successful run of return shows last summer it was good to this five piece back on stage once again.
Tonight’s set may not have been their slickest, as feedback and guitar noise drenched a good part of the start of their set but, once they seemed to balance things out on stage, they were back on fine form and put in a more serious show than many since their return – despite the ever irrepressible Bobby Battle.
Despite their personal misgivings for the song, Dead Man’s Hand remained a highlight along with A Parody of Actual Events, their song about zombies and, while most of the crowd remained distant, you could see they were warming up by the end.
The last year or so has seen Brutus Stonefist play fewer gigs, but it’s meant, when they have appeared, it has been more of an event, and tonight fitted this bill.
For the first part of their set Brutus demonstrated the more groove infused style they have been developing in recent times with hints of the like of Pantera to their sound, alongside the more full on thrash aspect.
When they strike this combination, as they did here, is when Brutus Stonefist are at their best and the crowd certainly responded to this tonight as they packed the dancefloor in front of the stage.
As the set went on the band headed back into their more hardcore infused sounds and this kept the crowd going before the inevitable calls for Slayer began and, rather than brushing them off, Brutus launched into their cover of Mandatory Suicide.
Tonight’s set from Brutus Stonefist showed a band who seem to have matured somewhat as there was distinctly less in-joke-y banter and a more direct approach of just playing some full on heavy metal.
Jersey’s Stan Smith have built up quite a following in Guernsey since their first gig here a little over a year ago and their followers were certainly ready for tonight as they were lined up at front and soon moshing as the band launched into a set of their own take on heavy metal.
With a style clearly influenced by the 90s metal of the likes of Machine Head and Pantera with a hint of the likes of White Zombie, Stan Smith demonstrated why they have become one of, if not the, top metal bands in the islands.
A real highlight of their set came with their call and response crowd pleaser where they invited The Future Shock’s Jack Fletcher on stage to help with the vocals and created a real moment of the night.
While a few of the crowd did seem to have sloped off by the end of their set (something that seems to happen with night’s like this for reasons I’ve yet to work out) Stan Smith left the crowd wanting more and left me with the feeling, more than ever, that these guys are the real deal.