Live Review: IRON KNIGHTS / DISARM GOLIATH / DETHONATOR – The Unicorn, London, 21-2-14

Live Review: IRON KNIGHTS / DISARM GOLIATH / DETHONATOR – The Unicorn, London, 21-2-14

There is always something satisfying about finishing work on a Friday evening and heading up to The Unicorn in Camden. The latest incarnation of the Iron Knights heads a bill that once again, showcases some energetic new talent.

Dethonator get the mood underway. With NWOBHM melody mixed with some early 80’s Bay Area aggression they create plenty of energy. This is a cool opening act. There are moments when they completely own The Unicorn – including what must be the world’s first “heavy metal conga line”. Big hooky songs like Harbinger and In The Place Of The Skull being rounded off by a jacked up cover of Metallica’s Creeping Death set up a quality night of metal.

Fans of classic heavy metal would be well pleased with Disarm Goliath. Steve Bell’s vocals are powerful and the Judas Priest and Dio influences are plain to see. The band is tight from the outset with Embrace The Abyss setting the tone. There’s something for everyone – prog elements, noodly guitar work and even some Malmsteen-esque touches on Wrath Of The Gods. The pace is kept up – Born To Rule and Raining Steel leaving everyone on a high.

Anyone familiar with the Iron Knights would be aware of the bands mixed history. Fresh beginnings then – it would be unfair and pointless to put forward comparisons given the numerous personnel changes. This line up with Jamie Gibson up front on vocals and guitar are concentrating on a thrashier sound. With a new album being set for release in the not too distant future, their set tonight is brim full of new songs.

The delivery is short and sharp. Transparent and Destroyer displays plenty of punch while retaining the melody of their early NWOBHM influences. As a unit, they are beginning to gel and there’s plenty to like about the set including crunching songs like Bloodstorm, Genocide and Blind. Only Jericho off the first album under the Iron Knights moniker gets an airing; the structure and delivery recreated to blend with their current work.

Another highly successful evening at The Unicorn then. Beer consumed, heads banged and more underground bands to keep tabs on. The venue has been recently given a makeover – get down and check it out.