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    BLOODYWOOD with support from LAKE MALICE at O2 Academy, Birmingham (UK) 31/03/2023

    Review by Nigel Copestake. Photography by Klare Sherwood

     

    On a damp, cloudy Friday in Birmingham, what better way to start the weekend than head down the O2 Institute to see the mighty Bloodywood, coupled with Lake Malice, the home-grown powerhouse hitting the UK by storm.

    The venue was already packed for the sell-out gig even before Lake Malice were due on stage.

    In recent months it’s been noticeable that support acts are getting more attention and Lake Malice hit the stage and reward the crowd with a storming set. Breaking into ‘Magic Square’ and never really letting up through to their final song ‘Blossom’.

     

    They are heavy, energetic and engaging, with great vocals, definitely a band to watch out for! If you like Spirit Box, Cassyette or Nova Twins, you won’t be disappointed.

    With Lake Malice not so much warming up, but igniting the crowd, there is an excited wait for Bloodywood.

    The guys from New Delhi have been around for a few years, but their debut album last year has propelled them to another level. Since first seeing them last year at Bloodstock, I’ve been eager to see them again.

    As they slowly filed onto the stage in a more intimate setting than a festival, like the calm before the storm, they hit the crowd with ‘Gaddar’. The traditional Indian folk and metal combines into a hypnotic, heavy sound with the vocals of Jayant and Raoul further amplifying and projecting their sound throughout the venue.

    Their influences may include nu-metal, but this sound is their own. Karan takes to the flute for ‘Jee Veeray’. It’s a haunting and a quieter moment before another audio-visual assault on the senses. The music is backed up by the enthusiasm and energy of the rest of the band members, regularly engaging with the crowd between and during the songs.

    This is the last gig of their EU/UK tour, but with their energy and enthusiasm, it feels like the start.

    The crowd jump in sync with the band during ‘Machi Bahsad’ which is a great anthem. The final song is announced and no one really believes it as they break into ‘Ari Ari’, the Crowd is encouraged to part with vocalists Jayant, Sarthak, and Dhol the Drummer, descend into the throng.

    They project a party atmosphere for their final gig, but the suspicions are they’ve approached every gig the same and given there all every time. The lights dim and the crowd demand more, so Bloodywood take to the stage again for a sort of unexpected encore. This time with an alternative version of ‘Gaddar’, which is a welcome return to the beginning.

    Earlier, a member of the audience shouted “this is the hardest shit of all time!” and right now, here in Birmingham, that about sums up what we’ve all been part of, truly epic stuff!

    If you’ve missed out seeing Bloodywood during this current tour, don’t fret, they’re due to play Download on the Sunday. Hurry though. Only day tickets left!

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