Well, this was one that couldn't be missed. Just a short trip down the road from university in Canterbury to Margate and the Westcoast Bar. Having got a lift there from a friend coming down for it and forgotten completely to book transport, after the gig the night was spent sleeping in the front of his car in the freezing cold on Margate seafront. Rock 'n' Roll if ever I've seen it. It was horrifically cold, but totally worth it.
Walking down the hill towards the Westcoast Bar equipped with a few cans of the cheapest non-urine flavoured lager Asda do (Bavaria, from Holland, acceptable) I was struck around the face with the smell of something rotten. As in, literally rotten. I suspect it was those wooden bits that you see on beaches that run into the sea. I forget their name, but I suspect it was those, sodden from high tide and by then rotting away. Either that or Margate is just a very, very smelly place.
Finally we got to the venue, and found that rather a lot of people had got there before us. I'm not sure what the capacity of the place is, but it's not a small place. When you consider that they have had Decapitated and Aborted play there, it's perhaps not surprising. We still have 20 minutes until Wretched Soul take to the stage, so time for a drink. £3.90 for a pint of Kronenbourg!? Grudgingly, I paid the money, and went downstairs, as it was just about Wretched o'clock.
I've seen Wretched Soul an awful lot, and God knows I go on about them on here a fair bit, but this time it seems like a milestone, with them providing support to Orange Goblin. They did, of course, already support Vreid earlier in the month, but as I didn't make it to that one, this really strikes home how far this band has come over the past year or so. Wretched, as usual, absolutely slay it. Those of the band who have the freedom to move around gallop around the stage with colossal energy, and Andy, the drummer, throws the horns to the crowd, which is fair enough, drumming doesn't really lend itself to running around the stage like a maniac. Moshpits galore through the set, and even some attention for the guys from a female audience member, who gets as close as she possibly can to the chaps, and even attempts to play the bass, before being escorted away by who I can only assume was the boyfriend. The Westcoast Bar is also possibly the best sound I've ever heard Wretched Soul have, and it really shows throughout the set. A killer start to a brilliant night.
Up next are Seven Deadly. Featuring ex-Panic Cell members, Seven Deadly are probably great if you like Killswitch Engage. I personally think Killswitch Engage are a big pile of cack, so the less said about that, the better.
To round off the night, Orange Goblin come out with one of the best shows I've seen for a long, long time. I forgot just how much I like these guys, having last seen them in around 2009 on the 'Healing Through Fire' tour and having missed them at Bloodstock this year, it surprised me how much of their stuff I knew. I can't find the entire setlist online, and my memory of the evening by this point is a little hazy, but bear with me. They came onto the stage with the mighty new single 'Red Tide Rising' from the latest album 'A Eulogy For The Damned', put simply, it's a cracker, and gets the entire place (which by this point is absolutely packed) banging their heads and moving their bodies. Moshpits all over the place. Goblin frontman Ben Ward does that thing singers do when they come to the front of the stage and shakes hands with fans whilst leaning over them. Fantastic, what a top guy. Except, I was right in the front row, and only very narrowly avoided getting a faceful of sweaty crotch on the numerous times he came to the front. It was tense, as I didn't want to cop a penis in the face, and he presumably wasn't going to be keen on being headbanged in the balls. Fortunately for both of us, no contact was made. Anyway, back to the set. My personal favourite song 'The Ballad of Solomon Eagle' came up early on, and goodness me, it's been a long time since I've lost myself quite like that. It's a similar story for 'The Filthy and The Few', 'The Fog', 'They Come Back' and 'Quincy The Pigboy'. One of the songs I seem to have missed hearing before is 'Scorpionica', but the room almost literally explodes are Orange Goblin plough their way through that one. Having been on the front row, I was knocked onto the stage, which was only about knee high, by a pit behind me. No room to get back to where I was, so only one way off the stage. Stagedive. Unfortunately the pit was very close to the stage, so I got turned upside-down fairly quickly and fell to the floor. But it was bloody glorious.
After that, it's onto more booze and an incredibly uncomfortable night in the front seat of a car on Margate seafront. I'd do it again for another night like this one.
Find Wretched Soul, and download their free single 'Veronica' from here
Seven Deadly can be found here
Check out the mighty Orange Goblin right here!
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