Tengger Cavalry/Formicarius/Maxdmyz at Underworld, London - live review

Mongolian metallers make an entrancing UK debut

Cover art for Tengger Cavalry/Formicarius/Maxdmyz live at Underworld, London

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Metal’s capacity for the weird and wonderful knows few bounds, and tonight’s line-up expands it yet further. From the melodic All To Hell to new single Grieve, the execution of local ‘Alchemical metal’ crew MAXDMYZ’s [6] set is a little rough around the edges tonight, and wiry frontman Twister’s exuberant energy isn’t quite reflected back in the modestly sized crowd. FORMICARIUS [5] are celebrating the release of their debut album, Black Mass Ritual, paying musical tribute to the early 90s Cradle Of Filth-style English black metal. Unfortunately, Lord Saunders’ rattling vocal style on songs like May The Rats Eat Your Eyes lends them an unpalatable, cartoonish quality that’s uncomfortably reminiscent of Alestorm. TENGGER CAVALRY [8] are making their first ever UK appearance, and the promise of the famous Mongolian throat singing means there’s a tangible sense of excitement in the crowd. That promise is absolutely fulfilled, but the most impressive aspect of tonight is how seamlessly the fairly straightforward, catchy riffs of Hymn Of The Earth and Die On My Ride blend with Nature G’s unusual vocal acrobatics to create a unique, super-heavy sound. The effect is so hypnotising that it only becomes apparent halfway through their set that the band are missing a drummer tonight, which makes their captivating performance – criminally cut short – even more impressive.