It’s always nice when a band comes out of leftfield and smacks you square in the face. This happens from time to time, and when it does it’s usually in Bloodstock’s New Blood stage.
We’d last seen ex-Mishkin bod Jimmy MacGregor at Wildfire Festival last year, a performance that was particularly memorable for a couple of reasons, the second one being the band’s, erm, original take on Master Of Puppets. Fast forward a year and a bit and the ‘glyph have made it to Bloodstock. OK, it’s 11am on a Sunday but still… Bloodstock Baby !!!
The tent is already pretty damn full when the band take to the stage. Now if you know us here at CB you’ll know we’re not the biggest fans of tech metal, but we found ourselves a spot down at the barrier and held on..
Well a promise is a promise, even if it’s a drunken “yeah, we’ll be there” promise that doesn’t seem like too smart an idea when you’re hungover and your ear is about 3ft from the PA stack. Still, show face, watch a bit then bugger off..
Jimmy & Co. arrive to a chorus of cheers from the attentive crowd. The Great Unseen (part1) gets us underway, although it takes us a few moments to catch up with proceedings and for the sheer awesomeness of what we’re seeing to sink in. The tight, technical percussion from Stephen Wilkinson on drums threatens to pulverise internal organs at 20 paces, and any thoughts of beating a retreat are soon vanquished… whatever else is on right now THIS is the place to be.
Unaccountable Deceit of Choice sees Jimmy in full screaming demon mode, whatever the elusive “it” is that great frontmen have, well he certainly does as he trades laser guided riffs with Ainsley Prothero. It’s definitely tech metal, but it’s the good kind. Red On You keeps the tempo high (maybe an ode to the frontman’s hair ? We don’t know, have to ask). This is where guitarist Prothero really comes into his own. You’d never pick him out of a lineup as “awesome metal guitarist” (I mean they’re NEVER called Ainsley, are then ?), but then you see him letting rip and unleashing some killer riffs while headbanging and stomping about like a loony.
Things finish up with Part 2 of the Great Unseen, and that’s it, job done. There’s no way that the first band on (more or less) should be the pick of the day but not only did Pteroglyph manage that for the New Blood stage, it took a stormer from Footprints In The Custard much later in the day to even run them close.
We caught up with the band after the show and asked Jimmy how he thought it had gone. Once he stopped grinning and getting the “well done mate” and “that was brilliant” accolades he deserved from the departing crowd he said “We had an unbelievable time playing bloodstock this year, we were on fire and everyone in the band played a blinder, the audience reaction was fantastic and we got to play to a full tent!”
“It was an incredible experience ce to play to a full tent of smiling metal heads! It literally couldn’t have gone any better! A great success!!”
And that, ladies and gentlemen, is how you do it.