Scar The Martyr Live at Nottingham Rescue Rooms

Scar The Martyr (7)Scar The Martyr are coming to the end of their debut UK tour; a tour that was a little last minute and not heavily publicised considering the high profile drummer in the band. Curiosity about the band has multiplied on a logarithmic scale in the last few days as it’s still pretty fresh news that Joey Jordison has left Slipknot. All of a sudden this tour isn’t just a hobby/side project anymore…this could be a full time band. So we better pay attention.

First up it’s With Silent Eyes. A bit of a palaver with getting in means don’t catch a lot of the set but they’ve drawn quite an early-doors crowd considering their set time of ten minutes after doors. They’re racket sounds pretty good from the snippet we caught.

The Hell are up next. Their faces are covered with bandanas and their frontman spends the majority of the set either on the barrier or in the crowd. He’s the up close and personal type. It’s certainly a way for support bands to get the attention of the crowd and if they don’t start a pit for your song, well, go and start one yourself!

Scar The Martyr (1)There’s a weird atmosphere in the air that awaits the arrival of Scar The Martyr. It’s as though people aren’t really sure what to expect. As the lights go down and the intro tape rolls all doubts are cast aside as Joey Jordison strolls on stage, gives a half wave and takes his place behind his monstrous drum set.

Henry Derek makes sure that this isn’t all about the drummer. He’s a ball of energy from the moment the band tear into ‘Dark Ages’. He bounces from one side of the stage to the other weaving between the other band members, monitors and the colossal drums.

The first few songs are marred by sound issues. Henry’s vocals are a bit in and out and there’s an almighty screech of feedback every now and then for good measure. The crowd reaction seems to be one of curiosity rather than fandom as they take a while to absorb what exactly Scar The Martyr are all about. It all seems to be heading for a bit of a car crash…

Scar The Martyr (8)As the sound gets sorted out and people get more comfortable, it all miraculously turns around on a six-pence. ‘Anatomy of Erinyes’ is a standout track from the album and it is the point where this gig starts to get going. It’s simple and heavy rolling-riff translates perfectly into a live circuit headbanger and the Deftones style dreamy vocals make it a bit more atmospheric too.

Scar The Martyr really hit their stride from there on and ‘Soul Disintegration’ and ‘Blood Host’ hit the spot with equal precision.

Joey keeps a low profile throughout the set. He gets up half way through to chuck a couple of sticks into the crowd and the set is closed with a mini crescendo of drums, but there are no big introductions to the band and the spotlight rarely falls on the drum stool. Derek does most of the talking; baiting the attendees to jump, put their hands up, make some noise etc. and the modestly sized crowd oblige.

Scar The Martyr (3)The end of the set brings up that weird atmosphere again. The lights stay down, and the chants of “Joey – Joey” start to get going. It’s a long old wait though, and you get that rare feeling that there isn’t going to be an encore. Just as the chants start to get more comical, (“Wait and Bleed” and “Joey I’m pregnant”) spring to mind, they reappear. A short but awesome blast through Killing Joke’s ‘Complications’ brings it all to an end with a bang.

It was slow to get going but this gig ended up being a damn fine introduction to Scar The Martyr. You can’t help but come to the conclusion that this is almost a warm-up for something bigger; like they’re testing the water a little bit. It was part of a low profile tour and it was a good but an understated performance. The Rescue Rooms aren’t exactly bursting at the seams tonight but when this band go onto bigger stages and really get the momentum going; everyone and his mother will claim to have seen them “From the beginning…” on this tour.

They’ll be fibbing though!