Campaign For Musical Destruction Tour @ Tramshed, Cardiff
Wed 19 Feb
Napalm Death are a British institution. Had their brand of politically motivated grind metal been deemed more palatable then I’m sure the influential Birmingham four-piece would have been offered – and turned down – knighthoods a long time ago. As it is, they continue to do what they’ve done best since the 1980s, laying waste to every city they hit – this month, for the first time in several years, Cardiff is in their crosshairs.
Joining them on tour will be New Orleans sludge metal veterans Eyehategod, Baltimore death metallers Misery Index, Finnish grinders Rotten Sound and Municipal Waste spinoff Bat. So Napalm Death frontman Mark “Barney” Greenway has got to be looking forward to this one, right? “I think if I wasn’t looking forward to it, I probably wouldn’t bother doing this anymore!” says the man whose guttural growls have been at the forefront of the band since 1990. The tour itself is a gathering of old pals, with Barney remembering Eyehategod’s Jimmy Bower from his time with Crowbar. “You have to be comfortable with who are touring with – we’re a hands-on, DIY band.”
With all these years of touring and with no signs of slowing down, there must be things that Barney absolutely must have, to kill time on the road. “Well I still do a lot of the driving, but if not then I take a bag of books – I’m like a sponge for new information.” Napalm Death’s roots go back to 1981, while their discography includes 15 studio albums – selecting a setlist every night must have its challenges.
“We try and give a bit of something for everybody,” explains Greenway. “Napalm is one of those bands that tends to get split into two eras” – referring to the band’s late-80s incarnation, with Lee Dorrian on vocals, and before him Nik Bullen – “so using that logic we try and pick something from everything. I’m a fan of those early records and if I didn’t hear Scum I’d be disappointed!”
And with that, the conversation veers off to football and Barney’s beloved Aston Villa, but with 2020 still in its infancy the heaviest package tour of the year may just be in the Tramshed this month. words CHRIS ANDREWS
Tickets: £23. Info: 029 2023 5555 / tramshedcardiff.com