VIKING Skull headline a five-handed blast of metal at The Box in Crewe on Thursday November 12.

The band was formed in 2003 by vocalist Roddy Stone, guitarists Frank Regan and Darren Smith, bassist Waldie and drummer Gordon Morrison.

They draw deeply from Black Sabbath for inspiration, with a little AC/DC, WASP, Motorhead, The Who, Kiss and Thin Lizzy thrown in for good measure.

This, mixed with whiskey drenched vocals; they forged an uncompromising brand of classic metal of their own.

They started life gigging at local jam nights, simply because it was free and each song played earned a free pint.

Soon these jam nights started to get packed out and people began asking for CDs, so they recorded and mixed their six track demo, Chapter One for £500 In just two days and released it in 2004 under the Grand Union Label.

Chapter One received rave reviews here in the UK, one of them being the only band still to this date to have scored an impressive 11/10 in a Metal Hammer album review.

This quickly earned them support slots on tours with Dio, Him, Sum 41, Wednesday 13, Alice Cooper, Brides of Destruction and a slot at Download 2004.

However due to a heavy touring schedule and with no label support, cracks started to appear in the unit.

The departure of Frank midway through a Wednesday 13 tour meant Roddy had to quickly switch to both guitar and vocals.

The vibe and energy in Skull remained untouched and people wanted more, so in November 2005, they released the full-length album Born in Hell, but this time the good reviews stretched all over the globe.

Viking Skull are at their very best right now, the songwriting has matured and the legendary live shows just keep on getting better and better.

Their latest album Doom Gloom, Heartache and Whiskey was released worldwide last year through Candlelight Records and has received rave reviews since.

Touring support is The Morning After, with further support from the leading lights of the local metal scene This Is Turin, Title Of Injustice and The Day Before Mortality.

Tickets are £6 and available from Doors are from 8pm.