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Evil Scarecrow, Saqqara, Decapod @ The Firehouse, Southampton (UK)

EVIL SCARECROW, Saqqara, Decapod
in Saturday, 7 November 2015 at The Firehouse
by Tim Bolitho Jones


 
To the casual observer, EVIL SCARECROW’s sudden rise to fame might seem like it happened overnight. However, when you consider that their first album came out in 2004, their ascension to the main stage at Bloodstock and mass media coverage become more of a well-deserved success than a sudden flash in the pan. Tonight they’re on the third date of their “Boldly Going Anywhere” tour, playing loads of small clubs across the UK and Ireland. We caught them at The Firehouse, Southampton’s dedicated Metal Pub and true to form, it turned into a night of ridiculous entertainment.

Opening proceedings are megaphone-armed Prog-metallers DECAPOD. Comprising several veterans of the local music scene, these lads make big, epic songs full of sky-scraping vocals, chunky riffs and atmospheric finales. It’s very impressive, it’s just a shame that it takes a while for an audience expecting crab monsters and antics to get on side. Their energetic performance gradually wins people over but they don’t get the reception they deserve.

Winchester-based marauders SAQQARA on the other hand are a more straightforward affair. For one thing they’re angrier and play brutally aggressive metal that’s clearly been inspired by the likes of SLAYER or LAMB OF GOD. Heads bang right from the first riff and the Gears Of War sticker on one of the amplifiers is especially appropriate; this would be the perfect soundtrack to chain sawing a path through the Locust horde. Some of the more intricate guitar melodies get lost in the mix but otherwise this is a white knuckle set, their cover of “So What” going down very well with the increasingly boozed-up crowd.

When EVIL SCARECROW take the stage though things really pick up. There are no mosh pits of crowd surfers tonight, but the night gets very silly, very quickly. During the course of the next hour, Dr. Hell and friends get everyone waltzing to ‘Dance Of The Cyclops,’ kick start a conga-line during ‘War And Seek’ and bring two guys onstage for a cake eating competition during ‘Galacticus.’ There are robot dances, four note guitar solos, five second songs about Sheep and it’s impossible not to smile like a kid at his first Pantomime all the way through.

 






 
It’s all very entertaining but it’s backed up by some impressive songs too. The opening ‘Rise’ for example is terrific and ‘Space Dementia’ is another highlight, even if you’re more likely to remember the zero gravity dancing than the chorus. It all climaxes in suitably ridiculous fashion as two hundred metalheads scuttle across the dance floor to ‘Crabulon,’ led by a guy in a brilliantly-shit crab costume. It’s not the most challenging gig ever, but for sheer fun it’s hard to beat this lot right now. Next time someone complains about how all metalheads are depressed and want to kill themselves, take them to an EVIL SCARECROW show.
 


 
*Photography by Chris Green

For the full gallery click here.

Promoter: The MJR Group
Ticket Price: £5


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Edited 30 January 2023
 

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