Evil Scarecrow supported by Ten-Foot Wizard live at the  Craufurd Arms Nov01

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Evil Scarecrow supported by Ten-Foot Wizard live at the Craufurd Arms

Evil Scarecrow supported by Ten-Foot Wizard live at the

Craufurd Arms Milton Keynes 27/10/18.

Having seen Scarecrow at HRH Metal earlier in the year I knew that tonight was going to be something special especially so close to Halloween. Sure enough, the Craufurd was adorned with skulls and all things Halloweeney and most of the fans were dressed up and in their best scary makeup.

What can you say about a band that comes on stage dressed as a fruit salad? All you CAN say is “welcome to the crazy world of Ten Foot Wizard”, Manchester based, they are the charismatic and insane Gary Harkin Vox, Guitar and pineapple 1, Adam Henry guitar and a strawberry, Emlyn Spiers bass and a melon, and Jonny Banyard drums and pineapple 2. After the crowd had finished laughing they got into their set, they play a mix of stoner rock and blues with amazing energy and a great sense of fun throughout. Formed in 2009 with two albums Return to the Infinite, and Sleeping Volcanoes, to their name. Starting with Through This World they got the heads banging straight away and then into Get Out of Your Mind, and the way Gary and the guys were knocking back the bottle of Courvoisier on stage it wouldn’t be long before they were. Gary’s stage presence is huge: forever jumping around and staring into the crowd with mad eyes and all the band are not just there for laughs, they’re all accomplished musicians. I loved the crazy antics Gary got up to on Working To a bitter Future rolling on the floor and forever screaming ok Mutha Fuckers, and when it came to the final song Covered in Tits he sang it through a megaphone to a plastic heron with a microphone for a beak. A great fun band and a brilliant way to kick off the night.

Now for the main act Evil Scarecrow, this band know how to put on a show, the stage was already full of props but anyone who had seen them knew there was a lot more theatre and fun to come. The band are Dr Rabid Hell guitar and lead vocals, Brother Dimitri Pain lead guitar, Princess Luxury keys, Kraven Morrdeth bass, and on the drums Ringmaster Monty Blitzfist. They play all types of metal: bit of death, thrash pure rock n roll, but most of all they entertain with a big capital E. This was the final night of the first part of the tour “you work it out” and they promised something special and man did they deliver. They were showcasing their new album Chapter IV: Antartarctica but also were going to play all the fans oldies, after all this band have been around since 2002 so they had plenty on the setlist. Starting off with two from the new album Way To Die and then Skulls Of Our Enemies: complete with the first of the huge monsters to adorn the stage with smoke billowing out of their mouths, a big crowd favourite next, Robototron had them all doing the robot dance, one of the slower songs The Ballad Of Brother Pain gave the crowd a bit of a rest but not for long as more and more theatricals occurred, the title song Antartarctica with a huge surprise in it, the crowd participation song Cosmos Goth Moth Gone where Evil had the audience split and singing COS! MOS! GOTH! MOTH! GONE! each in turn until they got it right, and when the doctor himself got it wrong he said, “I fucking hate this song”, to huge laughter and cheers. There were just so many highlights, but one of the funniest was on the song Space Dementia complete with gravity defying machine which they eventually found somewhere to plug it in to get it to work, and an Area 51 alien with a real believe it or not Spaceman from NASA. I’ll leave it to you to decide, oh and not forgetting the amazing flying saucers on sticks (no expense spared). Finishing with the brilliant Red Riding Hood, they left the stage, but the audience were not going to let them leave without hearing the legendary Crabulon: a claw poked through the curtain and the roars of the crowd were heard, finally Crabulon itself appears with the band and off they went and the mental moshing started. They finished the night with two more new ones, Polterghost and Hurricanado.

I have only just touched the surface of what happened on stage tonight, the wind stick, even Freddie Mercury: that’s all I’m saying, I don’t want to ruin it for anyone who wants to see them but I guarantee you will come out of the venue with a huge smile on your face. A big shout out to the production team and organisers, and the sound crew dressed as a pigeon and ladybird, it can’t be easy getting a show like this together. This was without a doubt one of the most entertaining and funny shows I had been to this year. Evil Scarecrow, I love you guys.

Review by Dave Martin & pics by Carol Henson aka LadyGigger.

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