GLASGOW KISS & SLAAMASKIN – 16.09.2023 – BERGEN
ORGANIZER: Stereo/Slaamaskin/Glasgow Kiss
PHOTOGRAPHER: J. Nepper
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The cozy and somewhat intimate venue known as Stereo, which is situated in a rather vibrant part of Bergen’s city center, had its walls and foundation shaken thoroughly last night as Glasgow Kiss and the inimitable Slaamaskin laid siege to the place. While I was unfamiliar with Glasgow Kiss prior to seeing them live, Slaamaskin is another story entirely as I have been a fan of theirs ever since they released the face-melting EP entitled M back in 2018, and I have arguably become an even bigger fan since the release of their latest grenade, namely Trollveggen. Last night’s show essentially served as a release party of sorts, and the idea of putting two hard-hitting yet completely different outfits on the bill together was a great idea as they actually ended up complementing each other rather well.
Glasgow Kiss were up first and displayed plenty of energy and enthusiasm as they tore through some melodically strong and hook-laden metal/hard rock compositions with a modern sheen to them. Several excellent harmonies and some impressive interplay between the musicians made tracks such as ‘Furious’, ‘The Wall’, ‘Forsaken’, ‘One Step Closer’, and the crowd-pleasing ‘Black Rose’ a most enjoyable listen. There were smiles all around and it was clear to everyone present that the quintet was having a ball on stage and enjoying those forty minutes in the spotlight. With so much promise and potential not to mention a knack for conjuring up a catchy vocal melody, Glasgow Kiss are definitely an act to keep an eye on in the future.
Slaamaskin launched into their aggressive blend of hardcore/punk-influenced heavy metal and petty much caught our attention and had us in a chokehold from the get-go. These dudes are as efficient, intense, and entertaining in a live setting as they are on record, which is saying something, and it was a real treat to witness them perform the Trollveggen full-length in its entirety. As with Glasgow Kiss, the sound was exceptionally good where I was standing and left very little to be desired in terms of separation between the instruments and overall sonic power. Two particular cuts totally made my day and left me feeling ecstatic and overwhelmed, more specifically ‘Treskeverk’ and ‘Forfall’. Those tunes are akin to nails the size of the fucking Space Needle being driven into one’s skull, and who in their right mind would argue otherwise or think that uncool?! Slaamaskin’s style and musical identity are . . . well, I can think of no other band that sounds quite like them, which is obviously a good thing as it sets them apart from anyone else, and there is absolutely nothing contrived about what they do. Perhaps that is why I love them so much? That raw, palpable sense of honesty and passion that seems to course through absolutely everything that they do. Is that why I am so attracted to their fierce, gut-punching brand of unpolished metal? Yeah, that is definitely a huge part of it. Anyway, if the five-piece bombardment comes to a town or city near you, I strongly recommend that you check them out, but more importantly, make sure you invest your time and hard-earned cash in the Trollveggen album, which is available on vinyl and digitally.