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London, Camden Underworld


My second night out in a row at the Underworld and another early start meant Designs Of Chaos were just finishing their riff plummeting set as I strode in to prop up the bar, however it was soon chocks away as the Stuka Squadron were on a mission to blitz London with some vampire shock horror war tactics.

riot immortal soul

This Germanic WWII looking lot have a comical edge with some serious Maiden-esque galloping riffs. Singer James Duke Fang-Begley is in your face and barking out the orders with his sword inches away from your chest and he's backed by some seriously heroic guitar work. The band are spitting blood in our faces and deliver a diz-busting set with 'Volga Bridge' and 'Zabulon's Inferno' showing signs of greatness.

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Now, my very good reason for being down the front was I was awaiting the debut English performance from those girls of Swedish Heavy Metal, Hysterica.

Their only previous appearance on these isles was a visit to Prestayn, Wales for the Hard Rock Hell Festival two years ago.

The girls didn't disappoint. In singer Anne De Vil, they have one of the best female vocalists since Jody Turner of Rock Goddess. Boy, can this girl sing. An effortlessly delivered high vocal range that can bleed your ears dry.

On guitar there's Bitchie who plays some clean razor sharp cutting solos. Bassist Satanica is an exact younger model of Girlschool's Jackie Chambers in her tight leathers and keeping it together at the back is the nicely named Hel-in.

Since their debut album 'Metalwar' the band have lost one guitarist and have brought in a keyboardist in Marydeath which I feel dilutes the Heavy Metal sound of this band somewhat.

stuke squadron
Stuka Squadron

Playing a set largely consisting of tracks from their as yet unreleased second album 'Art Of Metal' was a brave move. This was a great headbanging performance and I'm sure Hysterica will be back next time as headliners.

Nightlord are one of those thrash bands who never broke through to the big time, simply because they are British. Although being at the back end of the scene didn't help matters either.

Some seventeen years on the band are back together and playing to a crowd discovering the thrash bands outside the Big 4 for the first time. New songs 'Sin Eater' and 'Turn Of The Tide' proved Nightlord still have a lot to offer.

As the band took us through a trip down memory lane with 'Cult Of The Moon' I was retiring to bar to get aquainted with those lovely girls from Sweden who, for me, were the band of the night.

stuke squadron


The Final Book
Practice Makes Perfect
Sin Eater
Vote For Me
Twisted Out Of Mind
Turn Of The Tide
Cult Of The Moon
Holy Inquisition
Dark Night Dame


Heels Of Steel
Fighters Of The Century
Force Of Metal
Message From The Dark
Spirit Of The Age
We Are The Undertakers
Breaking The Walls

Stuka Squadron

Tales Of The Ost
Stuka Squadron
We Drink Blood
Volga Bridge
Zabulon's Inferno




Wacken Winter Nights 2018 takes place between February 23rd and 25th 2018 and the great news is that you can now experience a full-on, top class German Metal Festival easily and affordably.

It only takes an hour to fly to Hamburg from London and we've had longer journeys than that within the capital and they were certainly more expensive than the £33 air ticket that just appeared in our 'flights to Wacken Winter Nights' search.


Wacken Winter Nights is organised by the same team who are responsible for the world's greatest Metal festival, Wacken-Open-Air and the 2018 bill includes Skyclad, Orphaned Land, Elvenking, Finntroll, Grave Digger, Aeverium, Comes Vagantes, Coppelius, Corvus Corax, Die Pressgëng, Elvellon, Heimataerde, Hell-O-Matic, Ignis Fatuu, Ingrimm, Irdorath, Johnny Deathshadow, Krayenzeit, Letzte Instanz, Mr Hurley und die Pulveraffen, Pampatut, Pat Razket, Schandmaul, Sündenrausch, The Aberlour's, The Moon And The Nightspirit, Torfrock, Visions Of Atlantis, Vroudenspil, Wind Rose and more.

Besides this rich billing of superb Metal bands, there is so much more to see in the festival area including the medieval market and also the walking acts and jugglers you will meet at the theme worlds, including Robert Blake, three-time World Cup winner of street magic.

Wacken Winter Nights is something not to be missed and you can check out the amazing ticket and accommodation prices right here.

We just priced up the whole four day trip with hotels, flights, shuttles and festival tickets for less than £300 and we don't think you will get a better value festival than that, anywhere.


MetalTalk recently sat down with Wacken founder and owner Thomas Jensen and that interview will be online next week and it's a fascinating insight into how Wacken originated from nothing to become the world's premiere Heavy Metal event.


Wacken 2018 takes place from 2nd to 4th August 20218 and as with Wacken Winter Nights, if you have never experienced all it has to offer, then you owe it to yourself to remedy that.

Already announced for Wacken 2018 are Judas Priest, Nightwish, Running Wild (exclusive), Arch Enemy, Dirkschneider, Doro (Special Anniversary Show), In Extremo, Sepultura, Amorphis, Amaranthe, Firewind, W.A.R., Belphegor, Mantar, Knorkator, Deserted Fear, Watain, Night Demon, Epica, Knorkator, Belphegor, Firewind, Deserted Fear and many more and we'll have more Wacken 2018 announcements during December.

As well as being the greatest Heavy Metal festival in the world, it is without a doubt the Mecca of Metal and the one thing that every single person who loves our music should have on their bucket list.

For 2018, MetalTalk have joined forces with Wacken-Open-Air to help you get to Wacken easily and inexpensively and you can peruse the ticket and travel options right here.

If you are interested in going to Wacken 2018 and have questions, please fill out the form below and we will contact you with answers to all your enquiries. You are under no obligation whatsoever by filling this form out. We won't add you to any mailing lists or send you loads of spam - all we will do is help you get to Wacken as easily and inexpensively as possible.



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