So here we are, down to the final two games of the Pool stages and three of the four teams involved have something to play for: a spot in the knockout stages against either the co-hosts or Sri Lanka.
GAME 41: UNITED ARAB EMIRATES vs WEST INDIES
In the vein of Dying Fetus and Aborted comes U.A.E death/thrash band Perversion. From the name and the influences you can probably already hear what they sound like and you’d be right. Manic drumming, pummeling riffs and cookie monster vocals make Perversion a typical DM act and that’s alright. It’s well played, well produced and an enjoyable way to spend half an hour or so.
From Trindad and Tobago come a rock/metal band called Orange Sky who mix King’s X-style riffing and a S.O.A.D-vibe with splashes of reggae and funk that makes the album quite refreshing, and the Caribbean-accented phrasing in the songs is also tuneful and catchy as hell! And if anyone is going to cover the Scorpions’ reggae-tinged ‘Is There Anybody There?’ it might as well be these guys!
PREDICTION: The West Indies, on paper, look to have the easier of games against an U.A.E side unused to one-dayers and I can’t see them losing to the U.A.E. However will it be enough to go through to the quarter-finals? Musically, the West Indies take this one as well thanks in part to the infectious and joyful songs of Orange Sky.
GAME 42: IRELAND vs PAKISTAN
Lovecraft-inspired funeral doom metal, this piece writes itself, yes? No! Where you would be expecting ponderous bass riffs, doom-laden deep vocals and a bpm slower than a dying tortoise’s heartbeat, Transfiguration (a one man act from Banagher in Ireland) is heavy on atmosphere and even heavier on keyboards and synths, creating an uneasy ambience for the listener. It’s only with the final (and title) track of his 3-track ep, that Transfiguration ‘plays’ by the funeral doom rules, and even then it’s still a creepy listen. If you enjoy Midnight Odyssey then you will dig this.
Pakistan’s Dusk have been around since ’95 and over that time have dabbled in death/doom, progressive metal, ambient metal and death/thrash in their 20 year existence. For a band that’s been around for so long and have so many different styles, their back catalogue can be a little hit or miss but they do seem to have songs to suit all occasions!
PREDICTION: This match is do or die for both teams. A win for either will almost guarantee elimination for the other, as long as the west Indies defeat U.A.E which will more than likely happen. For Ireland, it’s a chance to put cricket on the map back home as they have never been this far in a tournament before. They’ve been playing some wonderful cricket and it would be great to see a newer team in the knockout stages rather than the usual suspects. However, I just feel that Pakistan will have a slight edge over Ireland and will qualify (along with the West Indies) for the quarter finals starting 18th March. Musically I’m giving this to Ireland as Transfiguration’s ep has been on repeat the entire time I’ve been writing this post and the songs seem to be seeping slowly into my marrow.