NWOBHM legends Satan head up Metal Brew festival

Classic heavy metal is a hardy beast with the biblical blood of Lazarus pumping through its veins.

To prove that point, one of London’s most grassroots outdoor festivals, the much-loved Metal Brew, is back after a six-year hiatus, propelled both by the passion of its organisers and the resurgence of all things denim-clad, variously patched and rooted in the ever-fertile realms of the NWOBHM.

Taking place this very Saturday July 18 at the Barnet Rugby Club from midday, and for a very reasonable £20 in advance and £25 on the gate, Metal Brew brings together eight bands both old and new for a community-flavoured raising of fists and the finest of ales.

Heading the bill are Metallica-endorsed Newcastle legends Satan, a band whose own resurrection in 2011 and 2013 comeback album, Life Sentence, sent old-school metal fans into a frenzy as the opus sold like cyanide at a mandatory Nickelback concert and whose live shows brought the still-gloriously rich vocals of frontman Brian Ross back to hoards of awed fans.

Also playing are yet more veteran returnees from the hard rock hinterlands, Leaf Hound - the London band whose influence on the stoner rock scene is, like, huge, or something, as well as new boy racers with the NWOBHM baton, and British pack leaders Amulet. Endlessly endearing and indefatigable biker rockers Admiral Sir Cloudesley Shovell will also be revving up the crowd, along with fuzz-bolstered rockers Devulfish, whose 2006 EP title, Subliminal Mullet tells you at least some of what you need to know, as would taking a huge hit off a bowl and doing air guitar on a bouncy castle. And there’s more, not least thrash ragers Lifeless, who are roughly akin to being attacked by a Facehugger clad in denim and with Special Brew for blood; superbly accomplished masters of the shameless anthem Seven Sisters; and stoner/grungy types Wychhound, a band whose grooves are like being massaged by a woolly mammoth who’s actually really good at this sort of thing.

Not only is Metal Brew a feast of timelessly thrilling music, it’s a guarantee that you’ll be amongst the friendliest, most genuine and most welcoming set of metal fans around. Raise a beer, pump out a fist and prepare for glory!

Pull up to the Metal Brew homepage here!

And buy tickets for the festival here!

Jonathan Selzer

Having freelanced regularly for the Melody Maker and Kerrang!, and edited the extreme metal monthly, Terrorizer, for seven years, Jonathan is now the overseer of all the album and live reviews in Metal Hammer. Bemoans his obsolete superpower of being invisible to Routemaster bus conductors, finds men without sideburns slightly circumspect, and thinks songs that aren’t about Satan, swords or witches are a bit silly.