The Razor’s Edge – Gig of the Year 2022

The Razor's Edge - Album of the Year 2022

In terms of live music 2023 has been up there as one of the best years for both quantity and quality. Here at The Razor's Edge our team have brought to you coverage of as many of those shows as possible. Trying to pass on in words and pictures what an experience those shows were.

Now we discuss our favourite shows of the year. Which show made each staff members top pick?

Cat Finch - Editor in Chief


Anthrax - 40th Anniversary Tour - Brixton

My gig of year is Anthrax's 40th Anniversary show at Brixton. Having seen them a few nights previous in Birmingham Mr Razor's Edge and I decided to head down to Brixton to see them again. First time I saw Anthrax in Brixton Academy was 1989 (I broke two ribs) and I was looking forward to seeing them again at this venue and boy they did not disappoint!

The intro video was fantastic and the sheer energy of the crowd was amazing. From the opening bars of 'Among The Living' right through to fan favourite cover 'Got The Time' and encore 'NFL' Joey had the crowd in the palm of his hand. They left me (and everyone else) wanting more and that for me proves why after all these years Anthrax are still one of my firm favourites!

Tim Finch - Deputy Editor / Photographer


There is no doubting that Ghost have taken their music to the next level this year with Impera. Alongside that their live show continues to surprise year on year. Alongside 15,000 Ghost fans in Manchester we watched in awe, as the spine tingling show swept us away for an hour an a half. From the opening of 'Kaisarian' through to the closing of 'Square Hammer' we were lost on an emotional rollercoaster of gloriously heavy music, intriguing lyrics and a heavy dose of the occult. A ritual like no other, lead by the mezmerising Papa Emeritus IV.

Like them or not, there is no doubting Ghost's live shows are better than any other right now.

Dan Barnes - Writer


A treat for both eyes and ears, Tool’s show at the Manchester Arena was the kind of immersive experience you’ve come to expect from the legends. Sadly, nothing on the setlist from the Undertow record but, otherwise, this was an odyssey through Tool’s history, with the Fear Inoculum material sitting comfortably next to the likes of Opiate, Pushit and The Grudge.

At around two-and-a-half hours, the show seemed to zip by in a heartbeat with a combination of the visuals and music acting as a doorway to a different mode of being. Yet, for all its magnificence and grandeur, Tool’s performance was an individual communion between every member of the crowd and the four band members up on stage. Mesmerising to behold, this planted the marker against which all other 2022 shows would be judged.

Carl Black - Writer

Carl Black

Xentrix - The Underworld, Camden

Seeing the future of thrash open up this triple thrash treat was something to behold. Like a football crowd welcoming the hot new talent from the youth team, as they make their debut fro the first team, Tortured Demon entertained the old guard in attendance.  Damnations Hammer came out with a confident swagger. They delivered such a heavy set that the crowd found it difficult not to head bang. Xentrix played a greatest hits set which bent the time continuum. I forgot the time and believed it to be earlier than it was when they finished. Topping the night was a cover (no, not that one) of Damage Inc. played at break neck speed and intensity with the singer of Tortured Demon. A perfect night.

Check out our review of this tour at the date in Wolverhampton here.

Neil Bolton - Writer

Neil Bolton
This was far from my first time with these proggy death lords but was certainly one of the best. Not really much point adding my thoughts in service to the memory of this gig when our Mr Paul Hutchings has summed up the night perfectly in his review in this here publication.  So I wont.

Rick Eaglestone - Writer

Rick Eaglestone

Lamp of Murmuur - Electricwerkz, London

As far as live performances go the started and ended very differently and went from gothic-doom to classic rock, but it was one in May of this year that really stuck with me, and this also be a reflection on why my top 10 list ended up the way it did. The debut event held at Electrowerkz; London by Death Prayer Records featured a lot of debuts with headliner Lamp of Murmuur making their much-anticipated international debut. Newly signed to Candlelight Records and also playing that night were Abduction whose latest album appeared in my top ten releases of the year. The event was very well constructed and aesthetically perfect, there are plans in the works for another one next year which I am already highly anticipating

Paul Hutchings - Writer / Photographer

Paul Hutchings

Marillion were in pole position to win this but their superb evening in late September was overthrown at the last minute by the most incredible night with the Swedes. Having Voivod warm up the crowd is special, but then to play for over two hours, dipping into a track from each album including the UK debut of Black Rose Immortal was unworldly. I’ve seen Opeth twenty three times before, including at the Royal Albert Hall, but this was something else and wins my gig of 2022.

Sam Jones - Writer

Sam Jones

Razor - The Underworld, Camden

So, this year was interesting as back in March I returned to live music following an extensive hiatus due to Covid. If there’s one show I’d have to pick for the individual gig of the year, it would be the Whiplash/Razor show that took place in London on November 4th at the Underworld venue:

This was a special one for, not simply because Razor were a top-tier bucket list band for me and it was a dream come true to actually see them live, not discounting seeing Whiplash either, but because this was almost three years in the making. Postponed twice due to Covid, when Whiplash, followed suit by Razor, went upon that stage the atmosphere was absolutely electric. It was finally happening. Razor had never played the UK in their nearly 40 year long career and when they got started, it was as if all the malice and energy the crowd had absorbed throughout that night thanks to the other support acts too, everything went off at once. The entire front half of the Underworld crowd section was one massive pit and considering how I wasn’t missing any part of this, I was right there in the middle of it.

By the end of 45 minutes straight I needed a breather, but not before I realised I was a sweating mess, having been within the roughest pit I’d ever allowed myself to be in throughout a genuine metal event right there and then. By the gig’s end, I felt exceedingly fortunate to have the opportunity to have seen Razor play and grateful the band kept their promise to play London after 2 years of postponement. If that show was anything to go by, it goes to show that old school thrash will always be a force to be reckoned with and why Razor was my top gig of the year. They played many of my favourite tracks off Violent Restitution. I was a deeply satisfied man.

Robbie Maguire - Writer



Richard Oliver - Writer

Richard Oliver

My gig of the year would have to be VOLA with support from Voyager and Four Stroke Baron at The Fleece in Bristol. A packed out and sold out show it brought together some of the finest acts in progressive metal. Four Stroke Baron were the oddball opener who interested me enough to check out their back catalogue whilst Voyager were an enormous party from start to finish with their 80’s inspired melodic yet heavy prog metal sound and VOLA just stunned with a show that was one of the best sounding gigs I have ever been to as well as absolutely flawless performances and a brilliant set which encompassed the entire sound of VOLA. There have been some other incredible gigs I have attended this year but VOLA stands out as the pinnacle of quality

Julian Pepper - Writer

Julian Pepper

Ghost - O2 Arena, London

I’ve been to some great gigs this year, with the likes of Pallbearer, Elder and Cave In being particular highlights. However, there can only be one winner and this goes to one of the best all round performances I’ve seen from a band in the 38 years I’ve been going to gigs.

This band definitely divides opinions but their show at the O2 London back in April was simply incredible from both a musical and theatrical point of view. I came out feeling exhausted, euphoric, hoarse and most of all extremely happy! So my gig of the year in 2022 is the mighty GHOST!

Check out our review of the Ghost tour from Manchester here.

Daniel Phipps - Writer

Daniel Phipps

Napalm Death - Boom, Leeds

If there is a band who I have enjoyed seeing grow in popularity over the last decade it’s Napalm Death and let’s be honest it’s very much deserved I mean the band played Glastonbury that’s about as cool as it gets. 

No matter how big Napalm got, what was special about the Boom show I attended was seeing them in a small club with no barrier and having the energy in the room as the place went nuts. Also seeing them play tracks I’ve not seen them play since 2002 such as Taste The Poison or I, Abstain (which I don’t ever recall them playing at a show) was brilliant.

I’ve been to loads of cool gigs this year but I came out of that show and I knew deep down nothing could top that.


Check out our review of Napalm Death from this tour at the Buckley date here.


Leon Plett - Interviewer

Leon Plett

Amon Amarth - Festhalle, Frankfurt

Best gig of the year for me was Amon Amarth at the Festhalle Frankfurt. Johan Hegg sounds exactly like you imagine him to sound. The pyrotechnics are super hot but they light everything up. Amazing.


Gareth Pugh - Writer


No surprise, that my gig of the year was Marillion at the London, Eventim Apollo, where they played the whole of An Hour Before It's Dark in full. Closely followed by Anthrax at the O2 Academy Birmingham a mere three days earlier. What a week.

Jon Wigg - Writer

Jon Wigg

As the world started to open up, we started getting back into the pit. So when one of my favourite thrash bands announced a headline show at the Underworld in Camden, I had to go. A hot sweaty night started with excellent support from Prolapse A.D. and Shrapnel before the Bay Area Legends, Death Angel took to the tiny stage and ripped the place apart. My gig of the year in 2020 was the Testament/Exodus/Death Angel lineup from a few weeks before the lockdowns began, so it is fitting that the best band that night would provide my gig of the year for 2022. Mark Osugueda and the band had the crowd moving for the full 90 minutes with a varied set covering 8 of their 9 albums.

Matthew Williams - Writer

Matthew Williams

Death Angel - Rebellion, Manchester

I’ve seen a lot of bands for the first time this year, Unto Others, Stoner, Uada, Behemoth, The Atomic Bitchwax, Zeal & Ardor, but it was an old favourite band of mine, at a packed Rebellion Club in Manchester on 15th August, where Bay Area Thrash legends, Death Angel, produced my Gig of the Year, as they tore the roof of the place, with one of the best gigs I’ve been to in years. They were on top form, with vocalist Mark Osegueda, prowling the small stage, and reinforcing the fact that he is one of THE greatest frontmen in metal.

They played songs from across the wide repertoire, opening with 'The Ultra Violence', quickly followed by 'Mistress of Pain', and the classic 'Seemingly Endless Time'. The crowd were like putty in Osegueda’s hands, with every word being sung back at him, 'Son of the Morning', 'The Moth' and 'Humanicide', were all given the full thrash treatment by a crowd who were rejoicing in DA’s first Manchester appearance since the Bay Area Strikes Back tour, which proved to be a cathartic moment for drummer Will Carroll. The pit was wild and frenetic, I stayed away for a change, as I wanted to watch the ensuring madness, and it was matched by the brilliance of lead guitarist Rob Cavestany, and when the epic final songs of 'Thrashers', 'Bored' and 'Thrown to the Wolves' came to an end, I took a deep breath and paused for a moment to rejoice in the splendour that I had just witnessed, one of thrash metals finest bands in full glory. What a night.


Check our review of this tour from London here.

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