Metal Hammer's Gigs Of 2014
The best gigs we've been to all year
As good as your stereo system may be, nothing compares to seeing a metal band kill it live. This year we've seen a ton of bands step it up and etch moments into Hammer's collective memory. These are the ones that really stand out.
Marmozets at Scala, London
Merlin Alderslade: "Nothing gives me more of a buzz in this game than seeing a young, hungry rock band on the rise, in front of a rabid crowd that is only going to get bigger from thereon in. Everyone knows Marmozets are going to be huge, but catching them at that boiling point was a welcome reminder of why we all do this for a living. Electric stuff."
**Vanessa Thorpe: **"Because Marmozets. Very closely followed by Jex Thoth at Boston Music Room."
Machine Head at Roundhouse, London
Dom Lawson: "Joyful, celebratory, wildly entertaining and remorselessly crushing, Machine Head's second Roundhouse triumph proved that they're still the finest band of their generation. If the modern metal scene lacks anything, it's a new band that can generate this level of euphoria, kinship and violent, drunken chaos. Long may they ruin my neck muscles and liver."
Meshuggah at Roundhouse, London
Lewis Somerscales: "Stunning, crushingly brilliant from start to finish."
Sólstafir at Eistnaflug Festival, Iceland
Jonathan Selzer: "It takes a big heart to make yearning universal and a deeply honest one to turn it into a trove of vast anthems a whole universe away from the mawkish string-pullers you'll usually find flinging platitudes to the galleries. Sólstafir's music is vagrant, a journey into the wilderness beyond all easy co-ordinates, but this felt like a homecoming as a room packed with Icelanders and international pilgrims shared a luminous moment of reckoning in a town that felt like the ends of the earth."
Opeth at Roundhouse, London
Alexander Milas: "It's no secret that Opeth's ship has long since sailed into deep progressive waters, but that night was a celebration of all that was, and is, immense about Mikael's vision, and their musicianship was just breathtaking. From the intoxicating throb of Cusp of Eternity to their Deliverance encore, that night just destroyed me. Roll on Bloodstock and the Palladium next year."
Bring Me The Horizon at Wembley Arena, London
**Luke Morton: **"One of the most important bands in Britain in 2014 taking the biggest leap and risk of their ten-year career paying off in grandiose style. The culmination of countless dive bar gigs to one man and his dog has led to selling out one of the biggest arenas in the UK. Massive choruses, even bigger walls of death – the time is now for BMTH."