Category: Interviews

HRH Metal IV – Birmingham, O2 Academy – 15 February 2020

The ÜR team headed to Birmingham, the home of metal, on the weekend after the 50th anniversary of Black Sabbath’s debut album for a weekend of metal goodness at HRH Metal. While the big lad took care of the interviews, it was left to Jonny B to cover the stages for the next couple of days. With three stages to cover and lots of competing slots, he did his best to catch as many of the bands as possible – and he didn’t do a bad job! So with things kicking off at 1pm on the first day, it was time for JB to make his way down to the third stage to check out the first band…

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The Big Über Rock Interview – Biff Byford

It cannot have failed to come to attention of regular Über Rock readers, and indeed metal fans in general – well, with the possible exception of those who have been holidaying in some remote corner of Outer Mongolia or quarantined in a Chinese community centre – that legendary Saxon frontman Biff Byford is about to take a massive step into the unknown, with the release of his first ever solo album, ‘School Of Hard Knocks’, which sees the light of day this coming Friday (21 February). Thirty years after first interviewing one of the most iconic frontmen in British, and indeed global, heavy metal, ÜR’s chief pack mule dialled the area code for north Yorkshire to have a quick chat with the man himself.

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The BIG Über Rock Interview – Naked Six

Manchester grunge/indie/punk trio Naked Six may be a relatively new name to many Über Rock readers, but they have a pretty impeccable pedigree, given that frontman Seb Byford is the son of… well, his surname sort of gives it away doesn’t it? With their debut album, ‘Lost Art Of Conversation’, due for release on 6 March, Astrocreep took the opportunity to grab a chat with the lads and talk about same, their music, forthcoming tour dates and, perhaps most importantly, mango and passionfruit smoothies!

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The BIG Über Rock Interview: Toby Jepson (Wayward Sons)

One of the hardest working musicians, fronting one of the hardest working bands in the Über Kingdom, Toby Jepson and his group of Wayward Sons are currently nearing the end of a month-long run supporting tongue-in-cheek superstars Steel Panther across the length and breadth of Europe. With the tour heading across the Irish Sea for its final trio of dates, we caught up with the singer to talk about how their latest roadtrip had been going, as well as the prospect of sharing the same stage as KISS at this summer’s Download Festival, the band’s relentless work ethic and the secret to their success on social media.

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‘Confessions Of A Female Tour Manager’: The BIG Über Rock Interview – Kim Hawes

Kim Hawes can rightly be regarded as one of the true groundbreakers for women in the music industry, someone who broke through the glass ceiling of perceived prejudice and proved that anyone, if they put their mind to it, can achieve virtually any goal they seek to score. Having survived ten years working with Motörhead – an achievement only one other person could boast about – this former swimming instructor became one of only six female tour managers working anywhere in the music industry, bringing with it the equal amounts of grit and glamour which makes up life on the road with some of the biggest bands on the planet, from Rush to Black Sabbath. Last year, having ended her journey and stored her suitcases away for the last time, Hawes shared her experiences in her autobiography, the rather cheekily titled ‘Confessions Of A Female Tour Manager’.

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Wheel/The New Death Cult – Manchester, Deaf Institute – 10 February 2020

After missing a chance to see Wheel at Damnation festival in Leeds last year, they’ve been on Jase Walker’s “to catch” list for a few months now. Tonight’s leg of the tour brings them to one of Manchester’s lesser known yet fantastically hipster music bars, The Deaf Institute, situated in the heart of the city’s student area just off Oxford Road. Along for the ride is Norway’s The New Death Cult in their first tour in the UK in support of their rather fantastic self-titled debut LP.

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Sabaton/Apocalyptica/Amaranthe – London, SSE Arena – 8 February 2020

For some unknown reason, we allowed Jonny B out of the relative safety of the north of England to head all the way down to the capital to head to this little place called the Wembley Arena to catch what is possibly one of the biggest bands in power metal at the moment. Naturally, like many of the fans, he made a brief visit to the Imperial War Museum in the afternoon in the lead up to this gig to really get in that historical mindset for a night of historical themed metal from the mighty Sabaton!

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Delain/Cyhra – Manchester, O2 Ritz – 7 February 2020

Jase Walker has always had a real soft spot for symphonic metal. Nightwish, Within Temptation, Sirenia, and Delain were all very much mainstays of his playlists, and the other night he get to relive the chills he got seeing Delain at Sonisphere almost a decade ago. After an extensive EU tour at the back end of 2019, the ÜK (well, part of it – Ed) got a multi-date tour with some other European dates to finish off their ‘Masters of Destiny’ show. Bringing with them a band our man been keeping an eye on for a while, Cyhra, a band featuring ex-In Flames guitarist Jesper Strömblad, Jase was really excited to watch these two bands blow the bloody doors off the Ritz tonight…

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Darkest Hour/Fallujah/Bloodlet/Une Misère/Lowest Creature – Manchester, Rebellion – 20 January 2020

Twenty-five years is a bloody long time for a band to be together but that’s what Darkest Hour are celebrating in this latest tour, and with them they bring four other bands in support of this including a favourite of Jase Walker’s, Fallujah. Manchester is one of two dates they’re playing in the Über Kingdom as part of a European tour throughout multiple countries, as part of this review our man also got to have a sit down with Mike Schleibaum from Darkest Hour and a chat with him about how the tour’s going, what sort of challenges a band goes through spanning 25 years, and any possible future plans.

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