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SAVAGE MASTER + DUNGEON @ Nice n Sleazy, Glasgow, 23 Mar 2018
By Wojtek Gabriel, posted 8 Oct 2018
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Savage Master live 2018
Can you imagine how hard it must be for young underground US metal bands to tour Europe? It surely takes guts to bite this bullet so, fans should properly celebrate every such occasion. Yet, as is the case with most similar events, only a small group of die-hard maniacs turned up to support Savage Master tonight and to spend this Friday evening alongside like-minded people, listening to young bands play old-school metal.
The main support act, the young Londoners from Dungeon kicked into 5th gear as soon as they opened the show with "Purifying Fire", a tune from their debut EP. No-one expected any ballads from these speed metallers and indeed, they ripped through the nine tunes with the force of a hurricane. The whole team worked their asses off, putting their hearts into the show, but their energetic efforts were totally spoiled by the sound guy. With the vocals having to compete with the overly loud drums and the guitar solos totally lost in the mix, everything was just mashed into one wall of noise. Fronted by the singer/guitarist Luke Drew, Dungeon played almost the entire new EP, including tunes such as "Innocent Evil" or "Queen of Sin", but also throwing in a brand new fast (obviously) number "Put Them in Their Graves" and closing the set with "Unholy Speed Attack" from their first demo. Based on their performance, Dungeon are quite ready for a full-length album and it's a shame the sound was crap, as it totally spoiled the otherwise positive experience.
Fortunately, we saw (heard) a significant improvement the moment Savage Master hit the stage. Suddenly, all instruments were clearly audible and with Stacey's vocals high in the mix, everything sounded as good as it should. The young Kentucky-based combo have already made some buzz in the metal underground, and you could see why as they progressed through their thoroughly enjoyable set. Having been compared to the likes of Cirith Ungol or Manilla Road on numerous occasions, the band draw their influences from the '80s metal and '70s hard rock with even some nods to the '60s here and there, combining their sound with unique stage image, bordering on BDSM style. What's important is that the whole package of music and theatrics works perfectly in the live setting. Song-selection-wise the band focused on their second album, with numbers such as "Black Hooves", "Vengeance Is Steel", "Looking for a Sacrifice" and the title track "With Whips and Chains" getting rounds of applause from the tiny audience. Promoting the still-hot new EP, they also performed stuff such as "Burning Leather" and "Creature of the Flames", both mid-paced tracks from that release and as the set was drawing to an end, we could also hear a couple of numbers from the debut album. Stacey put on a black cloak for "The Ripper in Black", before announcing that they had one more song for us tonight and closing the set with the very fast "Death Rides the Highway". You don't usually expect encores at such underground events, but the band still came back, with a raw rendition of Riot's classic "Swords & Tequila", giving the attendees the last chance for a singalong. The atmosphere in the tiny venue was that of real metal camaraderie, with no random folk in the crowd, just actual fans who follow the underground, and the band's dirty sound certainly made impression on those who witnessed their debut Scottish gig.
Based on the audience responses, everyone was happy as kids in a candy store to have a chance to see those guys live, as the only other opportunity to catch bands like Savage Master on this side of the pond may be at underground German or Greek festivals. Let's hope the poor attendance did not discourage the band and they'll consider coming back to this corner of the metal world to promote their next release. Hopefully, a much bigger horde will welcome them to Scotland the next time 'round.
Text and photo by Wojtek Gabriel

Savage Master on facebook: facebook.com/savagemasterofficial
Dungeon on facebook: facebook.com/DungeonLondon
Tags: Savage Master, Dungeon, heavy metal, live, concert, Glasgow
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© 2007-2018 Wojtek Gabriel. All rights reserved. Unauthorised use of any works published on this website is prohibited.
Materials may not be reproduced in whole or in part by persons, organisations or corporations without the prior written permission.
© 2007-2018 Wojtek Gabriel. All rights reserved.
Unauthorised use of any works published on this website is prohibited.
Materials may not be reproduced in whole or in part by persons, organisations
or corporations without the prior written permission.