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Semi-Finalists Sidewinder, Sour Tusk, Until 9 and Shadow Smile, performed Saturday Night at The Corporation in Sheffield for Metal 2 The Masses Semi-Final. Each band battled to win a spot in the final where they could win the chance to perform at Bloodstock Open Air Festival 2022, alongside the likes of Bury Tomorrow, Behemoth, Avatar & Static X, it truly is an opportunity that could sky-rocket a bands career just by putting on one kick-ass performance.

We at Rock Lifestyle UK attended the event on 5th March 2022 and we can tell you right now that the competition was incredibly tight and many people had a tough decision to make asking themselves, "who where they going to put through to the finals?"...

As most of our readers already know, we went in support for our friends Shadow Smile but we also wanted to check out what other awesome talent they had appearing that night and oh boy did they have some. All 4 bands on this line up really did deserve a spot in the finals this year, they all put on an incredible performance, giving everything they had, firing out songs like it was ammunition and interacting directly with the crowd to get as many people joining in with the fun as much as possible.

Whilst at the event we thought it would be a good idea to write a small review for each act that performed. Now remember, we may not be any experts I myself (Scott, the writer) have been to many concerts & festivals and I think (probably not) I know what to look for when a band is performing live.

So let's begin...


First up on stage were Sidewinder, who formed in 2019 and are a 'Blackened Crossover' act which is a mixture of thrash, hardcore, death and black metal. This is usually not the sort of thing you'd catch me listening to but listening to these guys live blew me away and has opened my mind to a new genre of music. These guys did not slack whilst performing, with each track they interacted with the audience and blessed us all with their demonic heavy sounds to the point that even after 3 other bands had performed on stage, I could still hear those growls in my head, but I'm not complaining, I want some more please!

So, if you're a fan of thrash, hardcore, death and/or black metal then these guys are for you, they certainly know how to perform live and even their studio stuff has pretty decent quality, so make sure you check that out too, you never know, you might become a fan!

Sour Tusk

Second on stage were 'Rock n Roll Powerhouse', Sour Tusk who brought their groovy electrifying rock n roll to life on stage, showcasing the very best of Sour Tusk.

Unfortunately we did miss part of their set as we was outside, not paying attention to the time but we got back in time for the last two tracks and was greeted by a band that had an incredible sound, something that I hadn't really heard before really. I can't even describe what they sounded like, even with any band comparisons, all I can say is it sounds old school but it's also new at the same time. (I make no sense, it's fine, we all know by now). Maybe something like if Black Sabbath met Led Zeppelin... f*ck knows but whatever it is it's awesome!

Overall though, these guys also have what it takes to take it to the next level, again with crowd interaction and bringing their powerhouse of a sound to the stage. Their studio tracks are also being added to my own personal playlist, the lyrics flow incredibly well, easy to learn so you can sing along & the instrumentals have you bopping and swaying, which I suppose as you're driving isn't a good idea, but it's all about having a good time right? Right!?...

Until 9

The third act of the evening were Until 9 who formed during the pandemic in 2020 these guys don't really define themselves by a genre, on their Facebook it states 'We play what we like with a background of metal/rock/rap with melody'. So yeah, they're a bit of everything most definitely.

What I can tell you though is these guys did blow me away the minute they took to the stage, immediately showcasing all of their incredible talents straight from the first track and had such a tight set, non-stop music and grabbed the attention of the entire room, I even saw more people coming in throughout their set, as there was a room next-door with a seating area.

Now there was one track that stood out to me and that was their latest single 'Skin' which is a heavy acoustic-like track that is perfectly put together and it surprised me that I hadn't heard it before as it did sound like something you'd hear on stations like Planet Rock and I even remember thinking to myself that they kind of reminded me of System of a Down, if they calmed down a bit, but even with that sense of calm with this track, their other stuff is insane and again has surprised me I hadn't heard of them before I saw them last night.

As like the bands before, definitely worth checking out!

Shadow Smile

The fourth and final performance of the competition were Shadow Smile who are an Alternative Metal act, who came to destroy & conquer the stage with both their old & new music, showcasing the awesomeness of Shadow Smile.

Many of you know we have worked with Shadow Smile many times here at RLUK but despite that this was the first time we saw them perform live and we was pleasantly surprised. They came on stage and gave it everything they had, interacting with the crowd, interacting with each other, posing all together whilst performing, had fans right at the front singing along and at one point bassist Ethan came into the crowd whilst still playing to show they want to put on a performance people won't soon forget, and they did just that, they showcased what they're all about and that's putting on a show that everyone including the crowd can be apart of.

Much like Until 9, Shadow Smile had a stand out track and that was 'Nameless', their performance for this one was stunning and had most of the room singing along. Connors vocals are also just as they are in studio, which is what a lot of bands tend to struggle with as it's about performing as close as you can to your studio releases and he did exactly that, screams & all.

We've always been here to support Shadow Smile and we will continue to do so, we would like to thank the guys at Shadow Smile for inviting us down to Metal 2 The Masses, it was a fantastic night.

So, who won? TELL US!

The winner of Metal 2 The Masses Semi-Final were Until 9 who will now be going on to the finals to compete for the last time for the chance to win their spot at Bloodstock Open Air Festival 2022.

We would like to thank all the bands that performed at the Semi-Finals, you all put on an amazing performance and we at Rock Lifestyle UK will be following & supporting you all, please feel free to reach out to promote music, announcements or any events you have coming up. That's what we're here for!

Don't forget to check out all of the bands social medias to get the latest updates.


Sour Tusk:

Until 9:

Shadow Smile:


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