Condate Records Sunday Split Roast – Retro Bar, Manchester, 5th June 2011

Everything about this whole idea of the “Split Roast” I like. The EP is awesome but the whole philosophy behind the release seems a really cool idea. With the EP only costing a fiver to split between the bands, label and production costs proves this is a labour of love rather than a grand money making scheme. The resulting live gig – with an extra band – for only £4 meant that the people that made the effort (and there were plenty of them, a very impressive showing) were in for a treat.

First up were Bury death metallers Foetal Juice, who started roughly on time to an impressive crowd, most of whom were there all night. Things started really well but the band soon became unstuck due to a broken string early in their set. Camaraderie shone through as Tarkan from Dyscaphia lent them a guitar so they were able to complete their set.

Next up were Magpyes, the first of the bands to feature on the compilation, and from the start of opener ‘Creeping Hand’, it was a near non stop assault of grindcore. With their length of set, the band was able to blast through a fair amount of songs, including the excellent ‘Willem Fucking Defoe’. Vocalist Damian spent the majority of the set in the crowd lunging back and forth, perfectly complementing the accompanying short, viscous blasts.

Dyscaphia were the next band to appear and after the chaos of the previous set, it was a slightly more settled set, the band staying generally within the confines of the stage and the insanely fast death metal pushed along by the awesome rhythm section of Warlock on bass and Scott on drums.

Diascorium were the most experimental of the bands on the CD, with each band member having a rich history of bands from which to draw their influences from, and that experience was obvious when they got their chance. The crowd started to move closer to the stage, and like a couple of earlier bands, vocalist Bernard takes his chance to mingle with the audience, nearly taking some with him when the mic lead gets wrapped round a couple of people.

The penultimate band of the day were Edinburgh’s Cancerous Womb easily had the days best intro, using the audio from the sacrifice scene in “Indiana Jones and the Temple Of Doom” before going straight into their first song. The death metal trio also got the first serious pit going later in the set, and seemed to get the best reaction as well, with the crowd up close and loving every minute of it.

Colonel Blast completed the days line up and as someone who bought the album when it came out last year; it was good to see how the band lived up to their live reputation. With a mixture of album tacks and the tracks featured on the Split Roast, the band got a good reaction from the crowd. The experience of the touring shows and the news that followed that they are about to start work on a new album can only be good.

That the show finished roughly on time despite the earlier problems and allowing for general delays that inevitably happen on such occasions. A well-planned and well-executed show, that drew a large crowd that stuck around for the majority of the day. The fact that all the bands worked together so well, covered for each other and helped each other out, this was a resounding success. It was heartening to see a good crowd turnout for an event on a rainy Sunday when it would have been much easier to give it a miss. The effort warranted such support, and I only hope there are further gigs like this to come in the future!