Live Review : Carcer City + Last Hounds + The Human Veil @ Satan's Hollow, Manchester on April 5th 2019

My experiences at Satans Hollow have always been hit and miss. The venue is one of the best themed night clubs I've ever been in, but gigs here have always been a strange affair on a personal note. The stage is circular in the centre of the room, beneath a vast array of twinkling fairy lights (think Joyce Byers trying to contact the Upside Down). Visually it's stunning. In the past though, I've seen bands here with sound  that... well... sucked.

As Johann and I both have day jobs and live/work in Liverpool, the journey to Manchester has us arriving too late for Downfall and missing a huge chunk of The Human Veil. I can only apologise for that. With Satans Hollow primarily being a night club more than a live music venue, things kicked off here earlier than usual to accommodate the club night that comes afterwards. I'll remember for next time. What I did take from The Human Veil is they are a local metal core band with a tonne of promise, and frontman Matt Walls voice is nothing short of ferocious. They will be hitting Rebellion next month with Downfall and Borders.

Last Hounds from Birmingham deliver an outstanding performance. The Birmingham 5 piece bring a unique energy to the stage, with their own brand of crazy frantic hard-core. I always wince when I see front men climbing on the barriers around the stage; my anxiety can't handle it. Last Hounds frontman was on the barrier, then on the floor, then on the monitor, then on the floor, then on the barrier... the whole band were brilliant and definitely ones to watch. Last Hounds will be back in Manchester on 20th April at Aatma and at the Goodminds festival.

This is the last Carcer City gig we'll ever see in Manchester. After 12 years the band are calling it a day and I for one couldn't be more disappointed that they've reached the end of their journey together.

Performing as a 4 piece tonight after guitarist Yakka had other commitments to new project Burdened, Carcer City’s last show in Manchester is a bittersweet farewell that is bathed in nostalgia and fond memories. The venue is the busiest I've ever seen for a gig here, as friends and fans turn out to say farewell to one of Liverpools favourite modern musical exports.

Opening tonight with ‘Tides from latest offering “The Silent War” Ep, Carcer City demonstrate what made that heavy weights in their field. The performance is flawless, with Patch singing the rather poignant lines “We do what we must in sorrow, if you love me let me go".

The set moves quickly back to ‘Perceptions’and ‘Infinite Unknown’ but soon we're back to the new tracks from “The Silent War”, and ends with fan favourite ‘Sovereign’.

Frontman Patch made a touching final speech about death, and ended up with simply saying “I decided after 12 years, I didn't want to do this anymore and that's ok" and you know what mate? It really is ok. Good on you for putting yourself first. Incredibly sorry to see the band go, but standing up in front of all your friends, family and fans and saying “This isn't for me anymore" is probably one of the bravest and most honest things I've ever seen in nearly 20 years of gigs. I wish all of Carcer City the best with whatever they do next.

Carcer City final ever show will be at Techfest 4th to 8th July alongside Dying Fetus, Monuments, and Leprous.

And Liam – the sound was boss.

Words by Sarah Cummings
Photography by Johann Wierzbicki