Uncle Acid & The Deadbeats

Uncle Acid & The Deadbeats


Valkyriesque, thunderous background music foretells a rumbling horror show tonight at Manchester’s Gorilla. Straight from “Hell, Cambridge”, Uncle Acid and the Deadbeats storm into stage. Lead singer and guitarist Kevin Starrs (K.R.) vaguely reminds me of that creepy Japanese little girl that comes out of a well and crosses the safe line between your TV screen and reality… To be fair, K.R. is not that scary at all, in fact, I think there’s quite a witty, nice chap behind that straight long hair.

‘Waiting For Blood’ then? Yeah. They choose first this hit from their latest album The Night Creeper and the audience starts the rhythmic head-nodding straight away. Even the avid technician can’t help joining the groove, knowing smiling.

Before turning up to Gorilla I challenged myself not to mention the obvious link between this band and Black Sabbath, but as soon as I enter to an already crowded room I come across with many fans wearing T-shirts of Electric Wizard, Manowar, Metallica and, of course, Black Sabbath. There are some thoughtful fans with Uncle Acid merch as well.

Spiders from lovely Gothenburg (Sweden) are in charge of the warm up and I swear they take it seriously. Their glittering 70’s hard-glam-rock, MC5 infused, is very much welcome. They certainly might not have invented anything new, yet they’re fresh and powerful and that’s fair enough for me.

A hard-hitting, barnstorming ‘Mind Crawler’ paves the way for a stomping performance, the head-nodding is stronger now, full of intention. Apologies for what comes next, but I must say the keys are the key in this one, a fifth mysterious guy playing it upon the four-piece outfit, in a kind of window that seems to be designed for DJing.

With ‘Murder Nights’ they seem to languish a bit just to put us on the mood to wander through dark forests loaded with serial killers hiding among the threatening shadows.

Damn sexy, ‘Death’s Door’ approaches us back to life and its worldly paths. I rejoice in the tremendous final part of the song, which they lengthen just right. Terrific bloody harmony. “My Blood lust never ends…”

By the way, it’s annoyingly hot inside, Hell indeed! Tomorrow I’ll surely be a Lemsip junkie but right now I believe that shows like this are worth any virus incubation.

We happily swallow the ‘Poison Apple’ and now everything seems a cheerful walk down to a tantalising darkness. Blow out ‘13 Candles’ and feel your dark side invading you. K.R. plays slightly hunched, hammering on his guitar. I must admit that I had my doubts whether I’d find this doom virtuosity a bit ponderous at times. Nothing farther, I was completely wrong.

‘Pusher Man’ or here we go again to the filthiest lands, conceptually speaking, that is. Musically and technically, they’re on this way to mastery with this psyche, stoner and doom conspiracy.

Parental advisory: “Let’s go crazy for this one, Manchester!”, K.R. encourages us before promising killer guitars introduce the mad folkie ‘I’ll Cut You Down’, to whom the audience obediently responds. In the same feverish mood ‘Crystal Spiders’ and ‘Inside’ come along.

I didn’t really see the point of the Beatles thing until they perform the sublime ‘Vampire Circus’, a wicked fight between melodic pop and twisted doom. Don’t need to tell you which one wins this battle, do I?

It’s been a breathless hour show but of course, there’s more. The impeccable, brand new ‘Melody Lane’ mesmerises even the most sceptic. We’re all pleasantly cursed by the time they close the cracking show with ‘Desert Ceremony’ and ‘Withered Hand of Evil’.

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Amaia Santana

Good karma brought me here to Manchester, my second home, where you can stay healthy (despite the weather) and young forever, as you can breathe live music in every corner of the city. I do believe in the healing power of music (rock is my life vest) and I'd be so glad to share my passion with you rockers of the world!