Newcastle’s Byker Grave Festival is back on November 11 after a three-year absence.
And with a 10-strong bill spanning the extreme music multiverse, it’s set to shake the city’s Anarchy Brew Co to its foundations.
So what can you expect from Saturday’s line-up?
Here’s our guide to a day of thrash, death, grind, sludge, black metal and booze.

Disciplinary

Disciplinary may be relative newcomers, but with a collective CV that includes Tide Of Iron, Prolefeed, Lovely Wife and Marzuraan, the trio boast plenty of experience.

And that experience has been put to good use generating filthy noise punk, spearheaded by a twin-bass assault and backed by Rob Woodcock’s sublime kitwork.

Check out their debut, Porkwind, to hear what you’re in for when Disciplinary kick off the festival’s tenth anniversary.

Waheela

Waheela’s semi-improvised, cathartic live shows are the stuff of legend in the North East.

Yes, the quintet have released a string of albums, including Treading On Weird Lines and A Wreck So Clean.

But you won’t ‘get’ Waheela until you see them in the flesh.

Their performances, underpinned by drummer James Porter’s hypnotic beats, are evolving waves of caustic noise and doomed out riffs, shot through with Adam Potts’ tortured vocals.

Intense? The word doesn’t do Waheela justice.

Andracca

Winterfylleth and Saor are flying their flags overseas. The Infernal Sea, The Sun’s Journey Through The Night and Abduction are gathering pace at home. Yep, UK black metal is in a good place at the moment.

And Lancastrian/Welsh outfit Andracca, who emerged with their Morgulduin cassette release in 2018, are adding their own spectral energy to the scene.

Alongside blackened hymns such as Void Drainer, Byker Grave Festival might get a taste of some new Andracca material too: a new album is expected this winter via Vendetta Records.

Endless Swarm

Endless Swarm (below) have been churning out savage powerviolence and grind for a decade, and the Edinburgh crew added another 20 stingers to their armoury this year, with the release of Manifested Forms.

Short, sharp shocks like Death Denied, Imprisoned In Skin and World Altered will be the order of the day on Saturday: the swarm will be buzzing at Byker Grave Festival.

Kurokuma

Doom’s answer to Ozric Tentacles?

Hawkwind transported to ancient Mesomerica?

However you want to describe Kurokoma, there’s no doubt that Sheffield’s cosmic voyagers are on their own path to Iommian nirvana.

2022’s Rushonrock-approved Born of Obsidian was the culmination of eight years in the UK’s heavy underground, its transcendental siren songs earning the band critical acclaim and a growing following.

They’ve built on that record’s success, and fresh from their November 4 set at Manchester’s Damnation Festival, Kurokuma will be bringing earth magic to Anarchy Brew Co. on Saturday.

Blasphemer

Founded in 1990, Dewsbury’s Blasphemer released a couple of cult-level demos, but sadly they didn’t follow the likes of Benediction, Cancer and Bolt Thrower into the death metal big leagues.

By the mid-90s, they’d morphed into Peaceville-approved gloom act Dominion.

But the band reignited in 2014 and got back in the DM game, with 2017’s self-titled effort and its follow-up, Lust Of The Goat reminding old school deathsters of their potency.

The band last played Newcastle in 2019, backing Aussie veterans Vomitor – and they’ll be eager to bring death to the city once again.

Implore

Byker Grave Festival will be bittersweet for blackened crust outfit Implore and their fans. The band – who originally hail from Germany – have decided to call it a day after 11 years on the frontlines, and are on their final run of shows.

So it will be the last chance to hear onslaughts such as All Consuming Filth and The Burden of Existence, and the final opportunity to embrace Implore’s filth-riffs and unhinged rage.

After all they have given to Europe’s extreme metal and crust punk scenes, Implore certainly deserve a good send-off…

Nightmarer

Comprised of current and former members of The OceanConvulsingGigan and War From A Harlot’s Mouth, dissonant death metallers Nightmarer slithered out of Florida with the Chasm EP.

2018’s debut album, Cacophony of Terror and 2021’s Monolith of Corrosion EP followed.

And in May, the US/German outfit plunged back into their fever dream with Deformity Adrift, an opus of Lovecraftian sonic structures and mutant dynamics.

You might need a DIPA or two to steady the nerves, once Nightmarer have unleashed their horrors…

Knoll

Knoll’s debut album, Interstice, was Rushonrock’s number one grindcore record of 2021.

The Tennessee mob’s dense, eviscerating assaults – punctured by jarring power electronics – have drawn comparisons with the likes of Full Of Hell.

High praise indeed.

In truth, the sextet defined their own sound on Interstice and last year’s Metempiric. And that’s the sound of a violent maelstrom, bleeding into pure chaos.

Knoll have stated that they’ll be playing a large portion of their forthcoming third album, As Spoken, at Byker Grave Festival 2023. They’re describing it as ‘funeral grind’ – and it ain’t going to be pretty, if the title track is anything to go by.

Prepare for total annihilation.

Hellripper

James McBain’s Motörvenom-spitting, blackened thrash juggernaut shows no sign of stopping.

Since Hellripper’s debut album, Coagulating Darkness, turned heads 360 back in 2017, the ‘Goat cvlt’ has been reaping souls across the globe.

And the Scottish act’s rise has been powered by incendiary records such as 2019’s Black Arts & Alchemy EP and 2020’s The Affair Of The Poisons, and a reputation for explosive live shows.

This year’s magnificent Warlocks Grim and Withered Hags (a Rushonrock record of the week back in February) was McBain’s most ambitious set to date, blending the raw power of his earlier work with more complex dynamics and a wide screen vision. Want the evidence? Just listen to the eight minute-plus Mester Stoor Worm.

Hellripper, having appeared on the 2019 line-up, have already paid their Byker Grave Festival dues.

And four years on, they are worthy headliners.

Check out our chat with Hellripper’s James McBain, on the making of Warlocks Grim and Withered Hags, here.

Byker Grave Festival 2023 info

Byker Grave Festival 2023 kicks off at 12.30pm on November 11 at Anarchy Brew Co. Newcastle upon Tyne.

For more info and stage times check out Byker Grave’s Facebook page.

Tickets are available on the Byker Grave Bookings site here.