It’s your local Frostman here, and back into things during May; which as most of you know is New Zealand Music Month! Being Altearoa’s acting Axe Man, I’m more than happy to provide you with your weekly dose of New Zealand metal; with a review of an NZ band each Monday, letting you know who they are, and what they’re about.
I’ve decided to start us off with none other than Beastwars! Hailing from our Capital and devistatingly windy city of Wellington, they have surfed through and made a huge name for themselves for in New Zealand! Unfortunately for myself, I have never actually seen these guys perform live, but I have never heard anything but raving reviews about their sludgey, stoneresque style. For those of you unaquainted with the faces and talented performers behind Beastwars, I’ll give you a quick introduction!
Matthew Hyde, the man himself behind the rough, grunty styled vocals. A truly magnificent voice to be reckoned with, the power of which is almost unmatched within New Zealand music; he can really belt it out there like no other!
Clayton Anderson, the riffs! Oh the dirty riffs! If you have ever listened to Beastwars, you know this man is able to produce the chugging energies that perfectly sync with Matts vocal style.
James Woods, the bass player. James has an intriguing bass tone, distorted and clunky, providing a beautiful low oomph to the bands sound, and covering a beautifully rhythmic drone when the guitar has left an opening.
Nathan Hickey, the drummer. Illustrates amazingly what a drummer should indeed provide for these kind of slow, hard hitting tunes, and leaving little to be desired.
Now that we know who the members are, we go back to 2011, the year Beastwars released their self titled album. Beastwars was recieved extraoridnarily well in our home country of New Zealand, and with good reason; because it kicks ass! (They also won an award for the best album artwork/packaging!) Beastwars performed at the 2012 Big Day Out music festival, alongside the world famous Soundgarden, who they have also had their own unique sound compared to. In 2014 they released Blood Becomes Fire and in 2016 released The Death of All Things, another collection of songs that blew the absolute socks off of listeners (It also contains my personal favorite tracks, “Devils of Last Night”). And this year, they released the awaited single “Omens”. If you haven’t yet heard it, I suggest dropping what you’re doing and replacing it with that banger instead! In 2017, it was sadly revealed that the much loved Matthew Hyde, had been diagnosed with non-Hodgkin Lymphoma. While doctors said he would make a full recovery, he had six months of chemotherapy treatment to contend with. Matthew made a recovery in 2018, to everybodies much given delight, meaning that there would absolutely hear more music to come. At the time of my writing this, they have also begun a tour for the much anticipated release of their new album IV. A link to their event page can be found below. Long live Beastwars. OBEY THE RIFF \m/