Staying in Deutschland with the thrash metal vibe, here’s the third of the quartet from the so called Teutonic Thrash Big 4 – Tankard.
Found propping up the bars of Frankfurt with a beer stein in hand, Tankard are definitely the less serious band of the four. Not as many songs about nuclear winters, psychotic butchers or generally hating everything in the world, Tankard’s views are predominately seen from the bottom of a beer glass! They have also written what I’m guessing is the only song written from the perspective of an ice cube! (Ice – Olation from 2006’s The Beauty and the Beer)
Since their inauguration in school back in 1982 the two core members have always been vocalist Gerre and Frank on bass. They’ve had a few other musicians through the door in thirty odd years, but nowhere near as many as some bands have had. Their recorded output has been pretty steady over the same timeline with 16 studio albums to date, and that is coming from what I guess you could call a part time band.
Nowhere as near prolific on the touring circuit as the other three bands due to them working full time and having to use holidays to play shows. You’ll often see their gigs announced in pairs over a weekend in the same country, or a neighbouring country at the very least, to make the journey worth while. The last time Tankard played outside of London on this island was back in support of The Meaning Of Life album in 1990 (the record that got me into the band coincidentally) and since then they have only visited twice in 2006 and 2009 and both times in London at The Underworld.
Similarly to yesterdays tale regarding Mortal Sin, Tankard are yet another band I have had to trudge over to Europe to see. January last year in fact. at 2pm on a Sunday afternoon I was still in the UK. By 8pm I was in the Razzmatazz II venue in Barcelona watching Crisix open up for Tankard. I was grinning from ear to ear like the proverbial Cheshire Cat by the end of show closer (Empty) Tankard.
With the growth of festivals like Bloodstock and Hammerfest over here I can’t believe no festival has taken a punt on bringing these alcohol fuelled German’s over for a 60 minute slot. One day.