Orange Goblin/Karma To Burn/Black Moth at Electric Ballroom, London live review

London’s metal institution bring their seasonal cheer

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Seeing the mighty Orange Goblin at Xmas is now an annual event, and one that never fails to bring seasonal good cheer – or excellent support acts. BLACK MOTH’s [7] soulful biker doom stomp sounds monstrous, lifted as it is by Harriet Hyde’s soaring voice and assured stage presence. Viriginian road dogs KARMA TO BURN [8] still eschew vocals entirely, but you would be hard pushed to notice as they remain utterly captivating, as attested to by the hundreds of nodding heads and shit-eating grins. It would be so easy for the veteran headliners to coast in front of such a partisan audience, but such is ORANGE GOBLIN’s [9] vigour and pride that this is never an option. Exploding onto the stage with Bloodzilla, there’s no let-up as the four men smash their way through a set that spans their career to date, and they even introduce new song Sons Of Salem, which has the power and rhythm to suggest the next Goblin album will match their best yet. Towering frontman Ben Ward is a charismatic focal point, while Joe Hoare shows why he is one of the best guitarists around. The highlights of the performance are the ebullient Scorpionica, the fierce The Filthy & The Few and the snapping Quincy The Pig Boy. But there are no dips, every song getting a huge reaction from the crowd of diehards. Orange Goblin are as much a part of Xmas now as pantomime, Quality Street and hangovers.