This was the second year of Filthfest in Dublin city, so after last years two day festival being so good, it was a must to go again this year. After arriving I had to visit the usual haunts in Dublin on any visit, Into The Void Records, Chapters bookshop and Delhi O’Deli for some Indian street food. Then off to the venue called ‘The Pint’ a long Dublin city’s quays, the bar has that traditional Irish pub look. But then you look in the window and you notice some facial tattoos and mean looking bearded fuckers necking back Guinness… but that of course is the band Coldwar. So then straight up to the rooftop of the place for a great post apocalyptic looking vegan barbecue, grilled on an old burnt out shopping trolley. Then the filthy feedback started rising up to the roof.
Fifteen Dead from Scotland take the stage first. Patched up from head to toe these lads spat out a great mix of crusty black metal. Getting people closer and closer to the stage which is a hard task being first band on. A really nice mix from murderous speed into slow warlike riffs. A damn good band, I’ve been listening to their 5 track mini album a few times since. Then with no dilly-dallying locals Twisted Mass come onto the stage. Honestly they were ready in under 10 minutes, real fast. The worst is waiting around as a band sound checks etc. Members have all been in various well known local punk and metal bands. So well seasoned at this kind of shit. Really heavy build up breaking into a really intense fury of riffs and great crackling hoarse vocals, completely fucking raging.
Right before the next band I have to get a quick flick through the stalls. So this year there’s the ever present Ian commanding the Underground Movement Records stall who organised this whole shindig. From grind to filthy crust and next to him is Cormy from Nuclear Death Terror with all his records coming from Australia. He was saying postage from Oz is fucking ridiculous to Europe, making it very hard for folk to trade or buy vinyl records from there. So with no time even for a even piss on come Zom. Death metal fans start surrounding the stage before the band strikes a note. An old punk head who traveled from the UK for the gig and flew back a few hours later turned and said “right, now to finally hear what all the shit is about”. The lights go down and straight into a mighty storm of death metal. Manic galloping drums and low growls, the venue is now fucking boiling… or maybe it’s some sort of hell/satan connection.
Next Bacchus from Galway who are recently back from touring the the US. Their songs have an almost journey to them. Where you have a nice ambient riff building and building, think Kylesa or Neurosis. Very powerful stuff. Again in keeping with all the bands of the night Putrefaction are set and ready to go in a matter of minutes after Bacchus finish. Tonight is the release of their album ‘Blood Cult’. The energy is really pumping now with some serious fists in the air from the crowd. There’s a real fucking edge to the performance, like you know they mean every fucking word they say, a blinding performance. I think they are really at their peak, folks really went ape shit while they played. The metal army box containing the various guitar pedals looked the business too.
Coldwar take the stage putting all the elements in place. I think their music has transcended and arrived at a type of consciousness but with an added madness… does that make any sense! Tonight they were playing some of the new stuff, which most people I think were curious to hear. Heavy crashing riffs, with the singer Trevor stalking the crowd backed by a ferocious rhythm but still refined. For me it was the final song ‘Last Days Of The 4th Sun’, to me it’s just one of those perfect songs. A real dark energy about it, can’t wait to hear these new songs recorded. Next up Freebase who to me have gotten a lot heavier. They still have that real heavy US hardcore kind of sound but with an almost Sepultura type of heaviness to some of the songs, I’m sure a lot of people will disagree with with me about that though.
The Rotted are strange in that they were a death metal band called Gorerotted and then turned ‘punk’. Normally it’s punk bands that end up going metal, not the other way round. They still have the blast beats and real professionalism about them. But have mixed all that up with a bit of Discharge/D-beat. Best tune being ‘Surrounded by Skulls’, catchy but heavy as fuck. The final band of the night was Instinct of Survival hailing from Hamburg, who were just fucking spectacular. I know at this point there is probably no point in describing what sort of music they play. Of course there was a mixture of Axegrinder and various other UK Crust. It’s easy to dismiss bands for playing generic crusty music. But Instinct of Survival have lots more to offer than that. There were singing parts and rhythmic parts that were almost darkwave but still very heavy. Then there are more death metal parts that give great variation and power. They even got an encore, I don’t mean the usual contrived pre-planned encore that big bands do, but a real one. They were walking off cause the bands had to be finished by 2:00 am, but I think there was a decision to say ah sure why not, encore it is.
Another great Filthfest, thanks to Underground Movement and the various folk helping at the door for organising such a great event. Already really looking forward to Filthfest next year again.