I was a little bit delayed on my journey from South Wales to The Fleece, Bristol, so when I arrived the building was rammed, front to back, back to chest, and I was greeted by the smell of alcohol, a wave of condensed body heat, and a barrage of sight and sound from up and coming eclectic noise merchants, Lake Malice, who already had the sold-out Bristol crowd in the palm of their hands. The atmosphere was electric, and Lake Malice was nothing short of slick and polished, as they served up heavy, tight, bouncy flavours and head-bang inducing grooves, interspersed with pumping, dance-tinged bangers, that the crowd were swallowing like hungry, hungry hippos, with all the frenetic fun of the family game of the same name.
Alice Guala, who expertly fronts Lake Malice, is a star in the making, who commands seemingly boundless energy and the ability to hold the attention of a room full of sweaty metalheads, with practised ease. The other members of the live band complimented Alice brilliantly with their confidence, technical ability, and overall stage presence. I don’t imagine it is easy for any band to open for such a buzz-worthy band as Bloodywood, but
Lake Malice – Photo Courtesy of Malli ‘Metalhead’ Malpass
Lake Malice performed at such a stunning level that it left this reviewer wondering if it could get any better.
After a brief interval, where the crowd kept the buzz going by singing along heartily to classic Limp Bizkit,Linkin Park, and System of a Down classics that were blasted over the PA, the room momentarily quieted in anticipation for the band that we were all there to see that night – Bloodywood. In all honesty,
Bloodywood were already too big of a band to be playing in a venue the size of The Fleece. Someone mentioned to me that this gig had been postponed due to Covid, so Bloodywood’s popularity had blossomed immensely during that time. Those of us that were lucky enough to be there at this intimate show, were in for the ride of a lifetime.
Bloodywood hit the stage in true rockstar fashion, with a staggered entrance of band members. First, with the percussive elements, that drove the already locked-in crowd into an expectant fervour with the driving and exciting Bhangra beats, which Bloodywood blend so well with their brand of heavy infectious metal, followed by the bass player who was rocking a smile so wide, it made me wonder how anyone else could fit on the stage. The three members on stage were then joined by guitarist, flautist, and producer, Karan
Katiyar, led the band into the first track, Gaddaar, at which point the place went off hard, with an eager and enthused rapidly undulating crowd. This was what we had been waiting for. This is what live gigs are made for. The band were soon joined by vocalist Jayant Bhadula and rapper Raoul Kerr, and the show had officially begun.
Bloodywood – Photo Courtesy of Malli ‘Metalhead’ Malpass
The thing that struck me the most about Bloodywoodwas their enjoyment and wholehearted appreciation of the welcoming crowd. What they were throwing out, we were throwing back in a cycle that threatened to blow the roof off. We didn’t know or understand half the words, but we were singing them anyway. We were making the noises in full appreciative glory of this unique musical showcase. Bloodywood live is a phenomenon, packed with humble confidence and shining charisma. In the gaps between songs, the frontmen promoted individuality, acceptance and unity, as well as being charmingly funny and heart-warmingly gracious. The set had obviously been practised to perfection, but there was still a sense of organic fun and spontaneity to the performance. What seemed like far too soon, the band announced that they had played their last song and it was time to leave, but the crowd were not having any of it. We wanted an encore, and we were going to get one. The chants of BLOODYWOOD, BLOODYWOOD,
BLOODYWOOD, was not going to subside until we got at least one more song. We were rewarded with our encore, but having run out of songs to play, Bloodywood elected to perform Gaddaaronce more. Did we care that we got a repeat? Did we fuck!! In fact, I think it went down better the second time.
Bloodywood – Photo Courtesy of Malli ‘Metalhead’ Malpass
All in all, it was a stunning evening of diverse Metal. With diversity playing such a big part in the increasing popularity of metal music, both Bloodywood and Lake Malice have an opportunity to really break out and create a huge impact on how metal is shaped and appreciated in the years to come.
Bloodywood Set list
Gaddaar BSDK.exe Aaj Dana Dan Jee Veerey Zanjeero Se Machi Bhasad (Expect a Riot) Ari Ari Encore: Gaddaar (v2)
I'm Malli 'Metalhead' Malpass. I've been Metalhead on five seasons of BBC2's The Ranganation and have been a front man and performer in Metal bands for years. Music has been my passion for as far back as I can remember and tends to dominate all aspects of my life and personality. I've been fortunate to have been asked to share some of that passion through All About The Rock
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