There’s an air of anticipation in King Tuts. Arranged around the room, orange helium balloons with penned-on smiles sway at head height, resembling the unsettling balloon-head-audience in the video for their song, Cesspit. Megalomatic are about to take to the stage, and no one in the packed venue wants to miss this long-awaited event.
Best enjoyed live, the sheer energy of Megalomatic’s set made their 45-minute set feel about 20 minutes long. This second consecutive new year gig at King Tut’s is another milestone in the bands impressive track-record as a rising band in the Scottish music scene. Touring venues throughout the UK several times as well as supporting HECK (fka Baby Godzilla), Megalomatic are deservedly attracting more and more attention with their intricately-constructed and devastatingly heavy riffs. Their new album, Symbolism, as well as their dedication to gigging and touring, has helped raise their profile as one of Scotland’s best live bands.
Megalomatic are not afraid to challenge their fanbase with new sounds. Symbolism has a few songs with softer vocals and more polished guitar sounds, interspersed with their trademark distortion-junkie heaven. There is still the same urgency and guttural screams from vocalist and guitarist, Craig McKenzie, and Jamie Barnes smashes with impressive, hard-hitting technical ability. Ben Reffin provides a gnarly backbone to the trio on bass. The band is the same monster it was last year, but stronger, angrier and more streamlined than before.
Cesspit is alternately haunting and unrelentingly heavy. It’s a gorgeous song, whether you love heavy shoegaze or progressive metal which you can headbang to until your brain hurts.
A Yellow Car, A Golden Chariot showcases the bands ability as a tight unit to hammer out a series of crushing, progressive riffs and beautiful melodic guitar, with Craig providing the growling vocal he’s known for.
As well as new releases, I was delighted that they played some songs from their previous album, Hunt For The Midnight Sasquatch!
Knees Crushed by An Electric Circus set the mosh pit into a merry spinning blur. It’s an old favourite with good reason!
What An Uncomfortable Sentence is still my favourite song by Megalomatic. Each section of the song is as catchy as the rest, and there’s an amazing bass riff in the middle, which is picked up by the whole band, turning them into a 3-piece rhythm section. By that point, the whole centre area in front of the stage was one big mess of flying arms, legs and hair.
Megalomatic’s intense sound, live energy, and technical skill sets them apart as a band to watch. I wish them every success for 2018!