HARD ROCK HELL NWOBHM 02 ACADEMY SHEFFIELD
It’s clear that the inaugural HRH NWOBHM festival has piggy-backed on or at least benefited from Brofest’s ability to persuade long-defunct bands to reform. Of the army of acts on the two-day line-up, many have already trodden the Brofest boards. But a good idea is a good idea, and the bands themselves are unlikely to care whether they’re revisiting their glory years in Newcastle, Nuneaton, Newport or – for the next 48 hours – right here in Sheffield. While London has a proud NWOBHM history of its own, it’s somehow fitting to witness this particular event taking place beyond the rapacious event horizon of the Capital. Even during the winter of discontent from which the NWOBHM sprang, the regions – in this case the former mining and heavy industrial hub of South Yorkshire – laboured under an investment and infrastructure deficit when compared to London and the South East in general. Sheffield may have come a long way since 1979, and avoided being nuked a la ‘Threads’, but in the frozen half-light of a December dusk, it’s all too easy for the mind to time-hop back to the bleaker days of Saxon’s ‘Hungry Years’.PERSIAN RISK
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HEADBANGERS OPEN AIR BRANDE-HORNERKIRCHEN Arriving on Thursday afternoon to the “the biggest garden party in the world” there is one hour to spare before the first band of the weekend unleashes hell upon us all. Swedish Mercyful Fate fanclub presidents Portrait open proceedings in true old school heavy metal style. They hype up the crowd, get the maniacs to the front and get the beer flowing. Following them are US thrashers Warbringer who bring a different vibe to the stage. Although energetic, powerful and insane, they are perhaps a little aggressive in the lovely daytime sunshine. However, Jaguar nail it. Vocalist Jamie Manton gets into the party spirit by swinging around a broomstick in the air in a slightly booze-fuelled manor, whilst Garry Peppered proves the NWOBHM era is far from forgotten as he riffs through some mighty classics including ‘Run For Your Life’, ‘Warmachine’ and ‘Axe Crazy’. Headlining the night is the incredible Lizzy Borden. Despite prior speculation, the shock-rock glammers are great! Lizzy himself shows one hundred percent showmanship with costume and mask changes, magic and the blood-splattering neck gnawing of an innocent lass during ‘We Only Come Out At Night’. Other hits played during their two-hour set include ‘Red Rum’, ‘Me Against … Read More
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