The Gaff, Holloway Road 12.06.09
You cant put a metal gig on in London during Download festival weekend they said, how wrong they were......
Hailing from south london, these guys understand their heavy metal and perform to a very high standard.
Entertaining and very talented there is a great potential here for another fan winning band.Strong songs with great hooks n riffs get the right reaction but the highlight from tonights set was an inspired cover of Iron Maiden's "Wicker Man", a smart move when nobody knows your own material.
Vocalist and lead guitarist Joe Ashwin is clearly the result of a genetic experiment to splice together Pink Floyd's Dave Gilmour and Opeth's Mikael Akerfeldt !
They perform long and highly technical songs which are individual masterpieces of excellence.
I do not use such words lightly this band has an amazing and mature sound blending melody and progressive death metal to the standard of Opeth, my only question here is "why are they not signed?".
Powering into a set of Arch Enemy vocal attack meets Fear Factory beats, fuelled by solid bass, expert drumming and break-neck guitarwork, the band more than lived up to expectations.
Then we come to song number four, a ballad.This really made you stop in your tracks initial reaction was that of slight confusion but then as the song progressed the audience were totally with it then came one of the most stunning guitar solos i have heard in a long time, full of soul and note perfect.
They followed this with a less than serious cover of Willie Dixons blues classic 'I Just Want To Make Love To You' complete with extreme metal triggering from drummer Matt.
The rest of the set was pulled back to full on metal to end a perfect performance.
Having seen them a couple of months back at the Underworld suffering from bad sound i was looking forward to hearing them properly, i was a little surprised to them as a quartet as opposed to a five piece and with a different bassist.
Tonights performance was like watching a different band, they seemed more relaxed yet produced a very intense set, their sound was excellent and Dan's guitarwork was inspired.
They played all the soon to be "Classics" like 'Arashi', 'Inside A Lie' and the awesome 'Devils Eyes', tonight they also threw in an unusual cover of 'Pull Me Under' by Dream Theatre, weird to hear it with female vocals but they pulled it off with real class.
Achilla have the potential to be a great band able to rival Nightwish both musically and with Martamaria vocally.Personally i feel that a keyboard player would add greatly to their sound and bring it to another level.
All in all a stunning performance from a band that deserves your attention.