Tiger Army / Send More Paramedics - Satans Hollow - 16.1.04

The unique venue featuring a round stage was decked out as though a performance of Macbeth was going to take place in Hell, or one of its many layers for you Dante fans out there. However, as the instrumentalists from Send More Paramedics (S M P) took to the stage wearing more fake blood than a casualty cast member, then followed by singer Samuel Francis who crawled out of the crowd throwing himself into a pulsating performance of zombastic metal, you sensed that the inhabitants of the dark side had come to us instead.

S M  P’s  vibrant screeching and bulleting guitars reached fever pitch in ‘No Fucking Joke’, as well as in what could easily be described as their status tune; ‘Zombified’. Francis made sure everyone was involved in this out of this world (or existence) experience, as he paced round the circular stage screeching into mixture of perplexed and enthusiastic faces.

When the Californian pop punk trio Tiger Army took to the stage as part of only their second trip to the UK in their entire career, they greeted an excited and expectant audience to a heart on sleeve display featuring an impressive array of old and new offerings. Standout track on a buoyant set of honest punk was the folk tinged new number ‘Ghostfire’. It is impossible not to review the new songs in the light of tragic news that former drummer Jeff Hell was shot four times during a robbery at his home,  forcing him to quit the band. Lead singer Nick 13 almost smothered the eager gatherers with the intensity of the words concealed within ‘Ghostfire’;

“It lives where love has died, this ghostfire
Where poison flowers bloom
It sears from beyond sighs”.

Judging by the number of satisfied looks on the faces of the young and older crowd it certainly seems as though Tiger Army are still growing. Let the battle commence.

David Adair

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