With UK fans of Peter Tägtgren's perennial industrial metal project PAIN accustomed to witnessing its live incarnation in 3-5,000 capacity venues on these shores in recent years as Nightwish's regular support act, the news of five headline shows over here was undoubtedly more than welcome. And with these being PAIN's first ever headline gigs in the UK, the opportunity to experience a full set beyond a mere forty minute fix would be one to relish. Penultimate date on the short tour saw the prolific producer and Hypocrisy mainman, along with his live session players, arrive in Derby at a peculiarly named venue, The Hairy Dog; effectively a 200 capacity room above a pub. With no full-coated canines in sight but a sizeable and eager audience, at the rather late time of 11:15pm, PAIN eventually hit the stage to a rapturous welcome. Launching immediately into 'Let Me Out', the opening track from latest album 'You Only Live Twice', the venue's intimate confines erupt with energy as flailing hair fills the air and bodies jump up and down en masse. 'Walking on Glass' swiftly follows before Tägtgren announces next up is "one for the ladies" with an airing of 'Dirty Woman' engendering the first pit action of the night. The solitary studio-based essence of Tägtgren's vision always excels on record with each new release although, in a live context, PAIN truly shine, in no small part due to the combined talents of sticksman David Wallin (who actually performed drums on the last album, marking a departure in Tägtgren's studio autonomy), guitarist Michael Bohlin and bassist Johan Husgafvel. And tonight, aided by a surprisingly resonant sounding PA for a venue of this size, the four men are on devastatingly fine form as the likes of 'Zombie Slam', 'Monkey Business', 'The Great Pretender', 'End of the Line', 'Suicide Machine', 'Crashed' and 'Nailed to the Ground' entertain an enthusiastic crowd over the course of an hour and a quarter, culminating with encore airings of 'Same Old Song' and 'Shut Your Mouth', the latter prompting a hearty sing-along from an unfatigued audience. The quartet of musicians bow to loud and well-deserved cheers before exiting the stage and I can happily report that the intimate PAIN experience is as exhilarating and intense as that in a much larger venue.
Saturday 16th February 2013
The Hairy Dog in Derby, UK
Review & Photography by Mark Holmes
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PAIN at The Hairy Dog, Derby, UK, 16th February 2013
Photograph copyright © 2013 Mark Holmes - www.metal-discovery.com