Napalm Death/Brujeria/ Power Trip/ Lock Up at Electric Ballroom - live review

Grind legends find new fuel for the furnace

Art for Napalm Death/Brujeria/ Power Trip/ Lock Up live at Electric Ballroom

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Early doors on a weekday don’t stop LOCK UP [7] wooing a sold-out crowd as newish recruit Kevin Sharp screams through 30 minutes of supercharged grind. POWER TRIP [8], meanwhile, rip into Nightmare Logic material at eye-gouging pace. There’s no room for breath; these Texans come without frills, their sheer sweat and speed competing with thrash metal’s heritage acts. BRUJERIA’s [7] sloppy, shitfaced blunder can’t compete, but it’s fun nonetheless. Viva Presidente Trump! receives a lovely “Fuck Donald Trump!” response, and it’s a thrillingly unnerving sight to see the two vocalists swing machetes around. Having played in all of tonight’s bands bar Power Trip, NAPALM DEATH’s [9] bassist extraordinaire Shane Embury pummels though one final set – a display of grindcore perfected. Barney Greenway’s spasmodic bull-charging between – and during – vocal grunts is always appreciated, but it’s given new urgency during the Apex Predator – Easy Meat cuts. That record is a modern classic and the songs are treated as such, even in a set containing Twist The Knife (Slowly) and four Scum tracks. A high point is unquantifiable, but Barney’s condemnation of the far-right and a rousing, venue-wide rendition of Nazi Punks Fuck Off is up there. Scum arrived 30 years ago but Napalm Death are as vital as ever.

Alec Chillingworth

Alec is a longtime contributor with first-class BA Honours in English with Creative Writing, and has worked for Metal Hammer since 2014. Over the years, he's written for Noisey, Stereoboard, uDiscoverMusic, and the good ship Hammer, interviewing major bands like Slipknot, Rammstein, and Tenacious D (plus some black metal bands your cool uncle might know). He's read Ulysses thrice, and it got worse each time.