UEA, Norwich August 24, 2023
by Andy Hodson
Things kick off with a Swedish brand of death metal as Orbit Culture get proceedings under way.
It’s only a short set, with their performance dominated by songs from this year’s Descent album.
But they get a good turnout for an opening band, and there’s a distinct feeling that they’d get a warm welcome should they return for a longer set on their own tour.
Bleed From Within take things up a notch from Orbit Culture. The Glaswegians hit the ground running, spinning and blending into the crowd.
Although they have half a dozen albums to their name, everything tonight comes from their two most recent releases – 2020’s Fracture and last year’s Shrine.
It’s a belting and anthemic set from the metalcore outfit, who must be one of the best around at the moment, and they could easily headline this sort of show.
The imminent arrival of Trivium triggers a rush down to the front from the bar and the smoking area in heady anticipation of the headliners.
From the moment the lights drop and Matt Heafy and friends walk on stage, that anticipation is gloriously rewarded.
They immediately tear things up with In The Court Of The Dragon and Down From The Sky before Heafy takes us back to 2005, when Trivium first came to these shores, smashing us with Pull Harder On The Strings Of Your Martyr.
It might be a young crowd but they go mad for the classics such as this one, and the onslaught continues for the next hour.
Throughout it all it’s carnage down the front, and it feels like you’re taking your life into your own hands in the pit.
But when it gets just a little bit too out of control and someone’s floored by a stray elbow, the situation is resolved straight away with the buying of a round in the spirit of true metal-fan camaraderie.
Before this UK tour, bassist Paolo Gregoletto said Trivium had deliberately tried to include some smaller venues than they perhaps otherwise might have chosen, and it’s a refreshing policy that’s appreciated here tonight.
Unlike Bleed From Within, their set spans their career (although there’s a bias towards songs from Shogun).
The end of the evening takes us back to the Ascendancy album with A Gunshot To The Head Of Trepidation before things come to a head.
Heafy directs the crowd to sit down before the band launch into In Waves, with everyone tearing up the place one more time before the Floridians triumphantly leave the stage.