Evil Scarecrow @ The Level, Nottingham, 2nd June, 2017

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A nother new venue for me, for Evil Scarecrow tonight, and it took me a while to find but got there eventually. The venue  itself, ‘The Level’ attached to Nottingham Trent University; impressed
me with it’s sizeable room, impressive lighting and sound. I even found the security in this venue very friendly.

The Five Hundred

The Five Hundred came onto stage and they came on with a point to prove. The venue was far from full at this point but they gave it their all and got the heads banging early. ‘Come Closer’ from their debut album ‘Winters’ (2015) reminded me of Bury Tomorrow mixed with Killswitch. Heavy and energetic verses followed with clean choruses; metalcore at it’s finest. Other ones I enjoyed were ‘The Rush’ and ‘Winters’, both reminded me of Parkway Drive especially the lead singers growling vocal technique and some of the more technical riffs. The band also lead by example; they were moving around all over the stage throughout, the lead singer even trying a few acrobatic mid-air spin kicks. Fair play; I mean why not? You want energy from the crowd you have to give it aswell.  Overall they impressed me for sure. I will be seeing them again.

Evil Scarecrow

Evil Scarecrow came onto the stage and the room flooded with people. The heavy metal band have garnered a somewhat cult following after a string of strong festival performances over the last decade, particularly at the likes of BloodStock Open Air, Reading and Leeds Festival and Download Festival last year. Their theatrical nature of wearing bloodied doctors gowns and makeup; unique lyrical content and humble personalities have made them fan favourites.

Evil Scarecrow

They opened with ‘Rise’, the lead singer getting the crowd going early on, the fists were in the air and the fans were chanting along. Their style could be classed as heavy metal with Nordic elements such as shrieked vocals and doomy/epic backing tracks. ‘Dance of the Cylops’ literally made me laugh out loud, the band were dancing along the stage arms aloft and the crowd followed suit, with their partners while covering one eye. The backing music provided the perfect ambience for such a sight; deep and bass ridden yet comical and strange.’The Book of Doom’ followed suit with the strange and dark themes carrying through; it tells a story of a man who tries to curse somebody by reading chapters from the book, only to find out the last chapter is missing. The song ends with the line ‘Just a reminder that your book is overdue, shit!’

Evil Scarecrow

The lead singer, known by his stage name ‘Dr.Rabid Hell’; had a great relationship with the fans tonight. His humble and everyman attitude gives them the likeable aspect that is definitely needed more in todays age; the kind of guy you’d love to go for a pint with. ‘Space Dementia’ saw some spacey keyboard work and nice power chords, similar to the work of Finnish folk metal bands such as Wintersun and Ensifirum. ‘Blacken the Everything’ had an epic intro, the guitars bursting in with a riff which kept the ‘metal-as-fuck’ vibe alive. A slow paced song it gave their set a different aspect and was a welcomed addition.

Evil Scarecrow
‘Robototron’ saw a return to faster material; the bands robotic movements highlighted their dedication to putting on a good show and visually portraying the song they’re
playing. The singular, robotic djents from the guitars made it easy for the crowd to join in and they did all too happily. The vocals here reminded me of Shagrath from Black Metal band Dimmu Borgir; demonic and hard-hitting but coherant. The band left the audience waiting up until the encore to unleash ‘Crabulon’; the song which has done so well for them at the festival scene. All too often I see videos online; year after year of massive crowds shuffling from side to side while arcing their fingers to simulate a crabs claw. The crowd knew what was coming and they didn’t disappoint. The claws were up throughout and it’s a shame I didn’t grab a photograph.

I’ve seen this band once before at Download Festival 2016 but alas it was from the back of a completely rammed tent. I saw them tonight and loved them. Stay cool and weird Evil Scarecrow.

Photography and Review: Neale Hayes

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