The Defiled are a band that have long been tipped for greatness, and they’ve got a relentless schedule to prove it. They’ve toured all over the world, with rock bands of every kind, spreading their own personal blend of slightly melodic industrial metal to every corner of the globe. However, they’re still a British band at heart, and this tour is called the ‘No Place Like Home’ tour for a reason. There’s no other country that welcomes The Defiled’s signature brand of live insanity quite like we do here in the UK, and their sold out show at the Talking Heads was no exception. They brought with them two controversial American exports, and proceeded to tear that tiny venue apart.
First up on the bill was The Killing Lights, a band that have weathered their fair share of troubles, line-up changes and name changes. It’s fair to say expectations were not high, which made what came next even more surprising. They were absolutely brilliant live, very musically polished, with frontman Michael Orlando practically oozing charisma as he worked the crowd. Even though nobody knew their songs, they played like headliners and had a fully-fledged circle pit opened up in the venue by half past eight in the evening. They were one of the best opening acts I’ve ever seen, and next time they bring their accessible and catchy brand of grungy melodic metal back to venues like this, it’ll almost certainly be at the top of the bill.
No such joy from the Butcher Babies however. They were fronted by two former playboy models, and seemed determined to flog that one gimmick to death. To be fair, the musicians in the band were seriously talented and were pumping out some very nice heavy metal guitar riffs, but it was hard to enjoy said riffs with the two ladies in question screaming over them in such a loud, shouty and defiantly unmusical manner. Funnily enough, all the men in the venue seemed to enjoy their performance a lot more than the women, but even they had to admit that after you’d heard one Butcher Babies song, you’d really heard all of them.
Finally, the band everyone had been waiting for took to the stage. The Defiled were treated to an absolute hero’s welcome from the devoted crowd, and they wasted no time in showing exactly why they deserved that devotion, kicking their performance off with monster single ‘ Sleeper’, the perfect combination of raw aggressive verses and a chorus anyone can sing along to . The Defiled are simply an incredible live band, and this performance was one of their finest. They slammed through a back catalogue filled with amazing songs including ‘Black Death’, ‘Unspoken’ and ‘ The Resurrectionists’, each one a battle cry of rage that was barely under control. Both vocalist Stitch D and notorious keyboard player The Avd easily have enough charisma to front the band all by themselves, to have them both up on stage whipping up the crowd led to utter pandemonium. One fan was hanging from the ceiling, as a near constant stream of crowd members surfed haphazardly onto the stage.
In addition to this, there was a mosh pit taking place in the centre of the venue which looked like a genuinely terrifying place to be. Luckily The Defiled are such a compelling live band, that there wasn’t really time to fear for one’s life. Of course, the highlight of the show had to be when they slowed everything right down for acoustic number ‘5 minutes’, dedicated to The Avd’s deceased family member. It was utterly beautiful, and showed that The Defiled can do gentle melancholy just as well as they can do flat out anger. By the time they fished up with a rousing performance of ‘Call To Arms’ everyone in the room was incredibly sweaty, but filled with the kind of joy you can only really get from watching a brilliant band tear into a tiny venue and give the performance of their lives. Let’s hope they don’t leave it another year before coming back to play in the UK again.