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Live: Covan Wake The Fuck Up 2

UK metallers gather for their Polish brothers

Despite the gravity of the cause – a benefit for the family of late Decapitated drummer Witold ‘Vitek’ Kiełtyka, and frontman Adrian ‘Covan’ Kowanek, still in a coma eight years after their tour bus crashed in Belarus – tonight’s atmosphere is one of celebration, in honour of the dedication and energy both musicians brought to their art.

NARGIS [7], featuring Akercocke’s Jason Mendonca and Dam’s Nathanael Underwood, are a covers riot. Troops Of Doom gets a frenetic blastbeat treatment, while Leprosy dredges up the soundtrack to innumerable not-so-misspent youths.

Adorned in paint-splattered patient garb like they’re on day release from some apocalyptic hell, META-STASIS [8] are both driven to the edge of reason and kept just in check by eight-stringed technical wizardy, rampaging grooves and samples electro-shocking the crowd and monstrous vocals.

DESECRATION [7] intersperse their banter with gore-drenched DM drills like being pummelled into a maggot-infested bog and INGESTED’s [8] super-tight sermons prove how vital modern DM can be when it knows where it came from. With ex-The Rotted’s Ben McCrow joining Dean Jones on vocals, EXTREME NOISE TERROR [8] are the indomitable spirit of protest incarnate, rallying increasingly bruised followers to their grind blast like waves crashing against the cliffs.

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.