Sorcerer's Spell at O2 Academy Islington supporting Alestorm!

PQleyR

Platinum Member
Hi guys! I had a tremendous gig on Saturday with my band Sorcerer's Spell, we were first support for Alestorm on the penultimate date of their UK/IRL tour at O2 Academy Islington. The show was sold out so even though we were on 10 minutes after doors with a meagre 25 minute set, we had one of the biggest crowds of our career to date, and were very well received considering we're relative unknowns on the scene.

To start off, here's what you might call an official bootleg of our opening number, Skeleton Throne.

I'll post more footage when it's uploaded, so check back for updates!

PS: There is a moment in that video at about 5.30 where I come completely unstuck for a few seconds...it's quite funny, see if you can spot it!
 
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Andy

Administrator
Staff member
Ben, congratulations on a great show! Band looks superb (especially Amy ;) ), & sounds great too. I'm travelling right now, so I can only hear stuff on a crappy laptop. I'll give this a proper listen through my cans when I get home later in the week. That way, I'll get the full sound experience.
 

Pollyanna

Platinum Member
Big gig, Ben! How many people? Pity bout the sound quality - the intro etc would have been monumental. It was hard to make out what you were doing but the stuff up was still clearly noticeable :) Still, it's not a deal breaker in a massive wash of sound like that, just experimental polyrhythms ... if you were playing at my band's volume ... haha

Probably said this before but Amy's a terrific keyboardist. Love her sound choices and the spooky moods she creates.
 

PQleyR

Platinum Member
Yeah, these are only from a little stills camera so it's not fantastic. However, one thing it does have going for it is no digital clipping. The other camera we have footage from sounds a lot clearer...some of the time...but is marred by the horrible crunchy sounds every time something sufficiently bassy happens.

The venue's 800 capacity, and it was sold out about a week before the gig, so even though we were on at 6.35pm, ten minutes after the doors opened, we had a decent number of people at the beginning and by the end the room was pretty full, although not packed, so maybe 400-500 people? Undoubtably our biggest gig to date.

Here's the closing number, Jagermeister Metal!
 

Andy

Administrator
Staff member
Ok, now I'm back in the saddle. ben, this really is a great gig experience :) I can filter out the camera mic affect, & the FOH sound is really good. Just a couple of mix issues for me = Amy's vocals way too low, & your snare a bit low too. Were the bass drums triggered? Great vocalist, great everything actually. Lots of power & taste in your drumming that suits the act perfectly. Would love to have been at this gig. Congratulations on everything.

Note to cameraman, more close up shots of Amy :) & face time for Ben next time out please!
 
M

mediocrefunkybeat

Guest
Great stuff Ben! I think your band are utterly ridiculous but in the best possible way. Congratulations on the gig - your playing has really come along! Really superb, I'm very impressed.

Are those the new cymbals? I can't make them out too well but they sound excellent from what I can hear.
 

Arky

Platinum Member
Overall impressive!

Ben, there are parts here and there which I'd have done differently but I have zero influence on your songwriting ;-) E.g. I'd vary up some melodic endings of the vocalist, mainly in the verse sections. Often times the rhythmic structure of the verses seems too static to my ears. Or that intro to the opening tune. Basically great, but it created momentum towards the end and then there was a log gap to follow, making the energy disappear. I'd put the "real" song beginning directly after the intro, with no gap in-between.

Overall your band falls into those 5-10 % of metal which I can relate to. For the remaining 90-95 % I don't really care. Considering that I'm a picky guy this is quite an achievement!!
 

PQleyR

Platinum Member
Ok, now I'm back in the saddle. ben, this really is a great gig experience :) I can filter out the camera mic affect, & the FOH sound is really good. Just a couple of mix issues for me = Amy's vocals way too low, & your snare a bit low too. Were the bass drums triggered? Great vocalist, great everything actually. Lots of power & taste in your drumming that suits the act perfectly. Would love to have been at this gig. Congratulations on everything.

Note to cameraman, more close up shots of Amy :) & face time for Ben next time out please!
I think the sound was better in the venue, this camera mic really isn't up to much other than withstanding very high SPLs. Vocals were a bit of an issue but it might have just been a headroom thing, and Amy's voice doesn't cut through that much anyway.

I think the snare probably sounded better at the time, but it's hard to tell. I'm pretty sure the bass drum wasn't triggered (the stage left one is just there for show, shameful!), but it sounded pretty good, I could certainly hear when other drummers' feet weren't quite in time.

The camera doesn't actually zoom in and out whilst recording if memory serves me, it's just a little digital stills camera. Spare a thought for guitarist Paul, who is out of shot for almost the entirety of the set!

Great stuff Ben! I think your band are utterly ridiculous but in the best possible way. Congratulations on the gig - your playing has really come along! Really superb, I'm very impressed.

Are those the new cymbals? I can't make them out too well but they sound excellent from what I can hear.
Thanks Duncan! These are indeed the new cymbals, yes.

Overall impressive!

Ben, there are parts here and there which I'd have done differently but I have zero influence on your songwriting ;-) E.g. I'd vary up some melodic endings of the vocalist, mainly in the verse sections. Often times the rhythmic structure of the verses seems too static to my ears. Or that intro to the opening tune. Basically great, but it created momentum towards the end and then there was a log gap to follow, making the energy disappear. I'd put the "real" song beginning directly after the intro, with no gap in-between.

Overall your band falls into those 5-10 % of metal which I can relate to. For the remaining 90-95 % I don't really care. Considering that I'm a picky guy this is quite an achievement!!
Well, I'm glad that you can relate to us at all, even if you would make some changes yourself! That's an interesting point about the intro, but in the context of the whole evening I think it worked well...everybody's intro music builds into a crescendo (including Alestorm's on this tour, which I actually put together for them myself), and since the song starts so suddenly, we felt it was more interesting to have it explode in unexpectedly like that. Also, we're the first support band, and almost completely unknown to that audience, so the mysterious quality of the intro lent itself rather well. Horses for courses, as we say.

It may be worthwhile my mentioning that this is only the second gig this lineup of the band has ever done, so I think under the circumstances it went extremely well indeed. We were certainly pleased with the outcome, I think we won quite a few fans with this gig.
 
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