Erosion/Rosco’s Riot/Periapt – Belfast, Voodoo – 3 February 2018 Print E-mail
Written by Mark Ashby   
Saturday, 10 February 2018 12:25

Erosion Album Launch PosterIt felt weird. The second successive night flying solo, as I headed back to one of my favourite haunts while Mrs A recovered at home from a devastating migraine… honestly, it was like being without my right arm! But, the show has to go on, doesn’t it? And, so, it did as I honoured my pledge to the Erosion lads to cover the launch of their debut album, ‘The Cyclopean Passage’.


I probably have to be somewhat circumspect in my comments about openers Periapt, as they are one of the bands competing in the Northern Ireland leg of the annual Bloodstock Metal 2 The Masses competition, in which I am one of the judges. So, without risk of prejudice, what I will say is this: they don’t get off a good start when they fuck up the intro to the first song and have to restart their set. And, to be honest, that sort of sets the tone for them: they do seem to be showing some signs of ring rust, and, despite delivering some decent, solid progressive-tinged hard rock, don’t really seem to have their act together, which is compounded by the over-long delays between songs, which destroys any sense of momentum they may have been seeking to build.


Main support Rosco’s Riot provide a total change of tone, and mood, with their blues-infused rock, its big, thumping grooves underpinned with pounding rhythms. Cleverly, with their own album launch due in this very same venue in a few short weeks’ time, they limit their choice of material to that from their debut offering, nevertheless whetting the appetite of the growing crowd for what promises to be a solid slice of suvern-boogie done Norn Iron style. I can’t wait - and I’ve got that big leather sofa down the back of the room booked already, so you lot can keep yer greasy arses off it!


Now, I must admit that DQ and I nearly fell out with Mark and the Erosion guys just a few short hours before this launch gig. Why? Well, it turned out that they’re only releasing their aforementioned debut opus digitally – and they thought that we only accepted physical copies for review! Hey, guys, I know we’re old-school – but we’re not that old-fashioned… we have moved with the times! Anyway, a copy was despatched to URHQ (the carrier pigeon was delicious, especially with the plum sauce) in enough time to allow a degree of familiarity with the material being unveiled… not that it was strange to these anyway, as most of it has been a stable of their set for quite some time.


Erosion Cyclopean PassageWhen a band have a singing drummer, it’s often hard for the audience to find a focal point, but the positioning of bassist Gavin Burnside right in front of the kit helps to counter the issue as the quartet deliver an accomplished and polished set of largely psych-infused stoner rock with plenty of thick grunt on its bottom end. Martin Donaghy’s guitar patterns are more winding than a country lane, but they are more than ably held together by the big, solid rhythms provided by Burnside, Stewart and second guitarist Stephen Fleming, while the superb sound mix draws out every intricate nuance of the band’s delicately layered sound but uncomplicated presentation.


A good solid launch by a band that always deliver good solid performances. Now to uncover that MP3 from wherever my hard drive has managed to bury it.


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