Pentagram & Gentlemans Pistols – Glasgow, Ivory Blacks, 4th November 2012.

A cold crisp evening in Glasgow was kicked of with main support from Rise Above stalwarts Gentlemans Pistols now featuring Bill Steer of Carcass/Firebird/Napalm Death fame. Commencing their set with an up-tempo rocker which bled Deep Purple, Captain Beyond and Quo, the pistols laid down the tone for the rest of their set. Steeped in seventies rock with the groove of Deep Purple and the weight of early Uriah Heep,  the band plowed furiously through their set awash with perfectly executed twin harmonies. Bill Steer looks like he is having a ball with not having the responsibility of vocals to hold back his guitar capabilities. A solid set, inoffensive and got the now considerable crowd warmed up for Pentagram.

The venue itself was heaving as Pentagram made their way through the crowd and ambled onto the low stage and took their positions.  After watching “Last Days Here” the rockumentry following Bobby Liebling through a harrowing battle with drugs, it is a wonder the man can function at all nevermind tour. This is a band rich in musical history which has been exploited and kicked in the teeth at every turn; it is great to see them finally getting some of the recognition they deserve. This tour is unfortunately the last one to feature Victor Griffin (Death Row/Place of Skulls) who was present during the albums released by Peaceville in the 90s. On this tour the band has been playing the whole of the “Relentless” album.

After some complaints about the style of microphone stand; the band was headlong into “Death Row” with Liebling staring manically at the crowd and the towering figure of Griffin pounding out the riffs on his Les Paul. The crowd chanted, punched the air and even at one point started a pit, meanwhile tunes like “Sign of the Wolf”, “All Your Sins” and “20 Buck Spin” were rammed home efficiently and effectively. As well as the “Relentless” album tracks we were treated to tracks from the 70’s period such as “Forever My Queen”; “Treat Me Right” from the latest album “Last Rites” and tracks from the classic “Day of Reckoning” record were also aired. It was a satisfactory trip through their vast back catalogue. It is a shame what drugs have done to this band and held them back from what could have been a star studded career.  Catch them while you can.

About Dave McCallum

Old enough to know better. I have been a metalhead for a long time, I am a lifelong collector of vinyl and cds, the more the better.