Welcome to the next instance of our Metalhead Series! This time we’re taking a look at seven incredible groove metal bands from Ireland!
The genre of groove metal is inspired by thrash metal and traditional heavy metal. It often features raspy singing and screaming, heavy guitar riffs and tight rhythms. Though it can be seen as similar to thrash metal, it is usually slower and uses more elements of the more ‘traditional’ heavy metal. Ireland has quite a number of bands that play groove metal or incorporate parts of groove metal into their music, so here are seven groove metal bands from Ireland that we found the most interesting.
Humanity Check are a melodic death metal band originating from north-eastern Ireland. The band formed in late 2015 with a shared vision of creating original and powerful music between the band members. While playing mostly melodic death metal, the band also incorporates aspects of thrash and groove metal into their music. Their unique sound is built around melodic guitar solos and bone-crushing riffs and is influenced by a variety of bands, including Machine Head, Sylosis and Killswitch Engage.
Humanity Check (EP, 2017)
Oracle are a five-piece thrash/groove metal band hailing from Belfast. They play high-energy groove metal which is full of hard guitar riffs, harsh vocals and filthy rhythms. Formed in early 2015, the band released their first demo track Burn The Nameless two years later in 2017. Since then, the band has released both their debut EP Tales Of Pythia and their first full-length album Novissima. Oracle also managed to gain more attention live on stage by playing at Bloodstock in 2018.
Sixth Extinction is a groove metal band hailing from Clonmel, Tipperary that formed in 2013. Originally, the band had more of a death metal influence, but after changing vocalist they realised they wanted to pursue a more melodic/groove approach that more suited the voice of their vocalist. That is not to say that you won’t find some harder sounds in their songs, they certainly enjoy the odd bit of grind as well. All in all Sixth Extinction takes the fun elements of metal music and forms them into songs that are fun and enjoyable to listen to.
X And Why? (2018)
The Belfast-based groove metal/heavy rock band Zlatanera was formed in late 2012 by former members of Residual Effect, Stand Up Guy, No Grace Given and Interrogate. Music tastes within the band are incredibly varied, but common between all the members is their love for riffs, rock, beer and songs about the devil. The band has become known for their riff-based groove sound and surreal lyrics. Their music is influenced by bands such as Black Sabbath, Cathedral, Entombed and Corrosion of Conformity, the latter of which they opened for in Belfast in 2016.
The groove metal band Grey Stag was formed in late 2017 with the sole purpose of entering Metal 2 The Masses in Dublin next year. They managed to get into the semi-finals of the competition, after getting the judges’ nod of approval in their first round. Last year, the band released their first two EPs, called The Guide and The Boat which are certainly worth a listen. The band itself is still in its earlier stages and it will be interesting to see what we can expect from the lads in the future!
The Boats (EP, 2019)
One of Cork’s more recent additions to the metal scene is the groove metal band Zhi Ren featuring current and former members of other notable acts like Soothsayer, Petropia, Inhale The Fall and Artful Renegade. The four-piece are leaving their past genres and music behind to create a sound that will take you through their twisted world. Their wailing guitars and guttural vocals will draw you into a dark ambience that you certainly will never forget.
Who Fucked The Monkey? (EP, 2017)
Ten Ton Slug
Ten Ton Slug is a groove-laden sludge metal band based in Galway, although originally coming from Connemara. They have been steadily gathering momentum, touring through Ireland, England and Scotland with prominent underground bands while building quite the fanbase and reputation. The band has always been well received by both audiences and critics alike at numerous festivals, including at Manorfest in the UK and at the Siege of Limerick in 2018,They have already released two EPs, Brutal Gluttonous Beast in 2016 and Blood and Slime in 2017 and I’m sure we can expect a full-length album sometime in the future.
Blood and Slime (EP, 2017)
One honourable mention: This Place Hell can also be seen as a Groove Metal band from Ireland.
Have you seen any of these “groovy” bands live? Or have we missed any good ones? Let us know in the comments below!