Godflesh - Heaven, London

Tonight it is Eighties night in Heaven, but not quite as you would imagine it... To celebrate the first new Godflesh release in some thirteen years, the pioneering industrial duo have put together a few dates in the week of its unleashing to help spread the word. Shows in the last couple of years have proven the power is still there and that they remain a vital and relevant part of the extreme scene. The rumours and excitement building towards the new material is comes to a head tonight.

Along to complete the theme are old friends and contempories Loop, themselves recently reunited. Despite the close links between the two, today is my introduction to their swirling, psychedelic kosmische noise. It is simple but highly effective, the pounding and pulsating riffs hypnotic and bounce-inducing in equal measures. They might at times find themselves falling too far into sheer repetitiveness, yet Loop always manage to pull it back out again and hit another gear in what is a terrific hour plus of live musical joy.

Godflesh open with a fresh track alongside 'Ringer' from the new Decline & Fall EP, but it isn't really until the opening strains of 'Like Rats' that the place turns to bedlam. And it just doesn't stop. This is soul-crushingly heavy music at its very best, the thumping industrial beats as mesmerising as they are punishing. Again pushing the limits of perseverance with both volume and repetition, they never once cross it as classic after Godflesh classic come roaring out, from 'Christbait Rising' to 'Spite' to 'Bigot'.

A final salvo of 'Crush My Soul' and 'Love Is A Dog From Hell' bring the show to a feedback-drenched close, with ears left ringing louder than most. Godflesh have inspired countless bands big and small since that first self-titled release back in 1988, and here they are back again refreshed and renewed. Given tonight's display, this forthcoming full-length is a record to be greatly anticipated yet feared. Brace yourselves.

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