|Not everyone likes to play shows. Some Black Metal bands, for example, feel they wouldn't be "true" anymore if people saw them live and realized they can't really play the crap on their albums. But everyone likes to go to shows, and if the shows arecool, they like to brag about having been there, and if the shows suck, they like to bitch about the waste of money, time and intact brain cells. Thus, this this site needs a "Live Reviews" section. Makes sense, doesn't it?.|
As with the album reviews, all members of DMHC can post their Tales from the Moshpit here, so if you're not a member and you've got something to say, subscribe now or you'll regret it when we take over the world and condemn you to slavery with all the other non-subscribers.
|Klick here for Mike's report from the Wacken Open Air 2000|
End Of Days Metalfest|
Emerson Theater Indianapolis
September 22, 2001
This fest boasted 16 bands, starting at 11:30 am, and going until midnight. There were quite a few late changes, and one band played on a day's notice.
This was my first chance to really hang out in the Death Metal underground. I had a great time. Everyone was extremely cool, fans and band members alike. It was cool to watch a band play, then see the singer go straight to the crowd and hang out. Everyone was totally approachable, and no one had the "I'm a rock star, therefore you are not worthy of my time" attitude. Cool.
As with most Death Metal tours, there were two black metal bands. Even those guys were cool, like their music or not. I do like some of the more guitar oriented black metal with no keyboards. Fog, (Indy) was one such band.
Indianapolis has more of an underground scene than I realized, and I couldn't be happier!
Gravesight (Indy) opened the show. Even at noon with only twenty people watching, they tore shit up! They were great. It's nice to see that enthusiasm.
Avulsion on the other hand, even though they were good, seemed bored. The singer had a good voice, but when he talked to the crowd, he seemed as though he didn't really care if they were playing or not.
Harakiri (Indy) is fast, heavy death/grind. They ruled.
Other bands that stood out to me were, Abominant, Serberus, LIVIDITY, FLESHGRIND, SKINLESS, (Webber's the man!) and of course Macabre.
I had never heard Macabre, and all the people I talked to about them told me I was in for a treat. Damn, they weren't kidding. But that's another story.
This fest is planned as an annual event, with a few bands already booked. I WILL BE THERE! So should you. Remember this name, IT WILL BE HUGE!
Lamb Of God
October 26, 2000 Bogart's Cincinatti, OH
Lamb Of God opened the show. I had never heard them. In fact, I was totally unaware of any opening acts. Randy, the singer, had fallen off a roof and broken his wrist a couple of nights prior to this show. They played without him the night before, (and told me afterwards that the crowd LOVED THEM!). What an amazing set! There weren't alot of people up front to start with, but the pit filled up after a couple of songs. I liked this band so much that I got in the pit myself, (something I have NEVER done before, and may never do again.) Randy told me after their set that he was on serious pain drugs and felt like total shit, but you couldn't tell when he was onstage. This band is fucking BRUTAL! Their sound was really good. After the show, most of the guys hung out at the merch table, and I got to talk to them. They were a bit surprised by the crowd reaction on this tour. GWAR fans are notorious for booing opening acts off the stage. Not Lamb Of God! Anyway, this set was worth the price of admission alone.
Next was Amen. I missed the first couple of songs talking to the LOG guys. I have to admit, I didn't care much for them. I waited until I heard them on cd before I made it official. They had the attitude, and they were heavy, but they sound too much like Limp Bizkit to me, (minus the whining of course).
GWAR. This was my first GWAR show, so I have nothing in the way of comparison. They had me totally hooked from the opening. Huge Al Gore and George W. Bush figures came out to address the crowd. Sleazy P. Martini came out with a shotgun...Heheh. He blew Bush's head off, then Oderus came out and ripped Gore's head off. The rest of the band came out and they started "Black And Huge", (while Oderus was spraying the crowd from his big black dick codpiece). They played ALL of the songs I wanted to hear, and played them extremely well. I had a feeling going in that the musicianship might falter a little in favor of the live show. I was mistaken, and I hope Oderus never reads this...All in all it was a great time, and I'll be sure to catch GWAR every chance I get.
|DEF LEPPARD: LIVE AT THE BIG E|
Been waiting 13 years to see them. Def Leppard is my favorite band of all time. I got Hysteria when I was 10 (when Joe's bitch-ass was 3) and listened to nothing but Def Leppard till I was 14 or so. So FINALLY I get to see them, and for only $8 cuz it was at a state fair thing. I live an hour away but it took 2.45 hours to get there cuz of the traffic. There were so many hicks at this place, you'd think it was NASCAR Night at the Cherry Hill Bowling Lanes. My biggest regret is that I didn't take a mullet count. Got into the park, ate, and went to the stage. Place was fucking packed - Mandy Moore played the night before and she didn't have half the crowd DL drew. Bitch. Anyway, me and my friend Joze tried to squeeze up front but people were starting to get pissed so we had to stop about 250 feet back. Then they came out and started playing. AS SOON AS THEY FUCKING STARTED, the white trash bitch in front of me gets up on her white trash husbands shoulders and blocks my view. And everyone was so tight in there I couldn't see around her. So this huge frat jock comes through and nobody was stopping him, so I said "Fuck it, if this guy can go, so I can I." So I followed. Got like 20 feet closer and I hear Joze say "FUCK YOU!" Turned around and saw that this big guy had swiped Joze's hat off. The guy started yelling back and then some other guys did and I was like "Here we go," and I prepared to hit the guy in the teeth but then everything calmed down. But anyway, back to Def Leppard. Holy shit, Phil Collen and Vivian Campbell are awesome on their instruments. Guess that's what happens when your only job for 25 years has been playing guitar. Made it look just effortless. Phil Collen is so fast. They played a bunch of stuff off "Hysteria", some off "Pyromania", a little off "High and Dry". Unfortunately they played "Slang", cuz that album sucks. Closed with "Let's Get Rocked." Shoulda been "Pour Some Sugar On Me," but oh well. Anyway, I've seen alot of bands. I lost my list but I'm easily over 350. And Def Leppard was one of the best. Better than Poison, and Poison relied on a big stage show and pyrotechnics. Def Leppard was just GOOD. They're so polished at what they do, it's just awesome. They make Cryptopsy and Nile and Nevermore and Mr. Bungle and Devin Townsend and Cannibal Corpse and Morbid Angel and all of Angelol's no name Kentucky bands and Infectious Grooves and especially whack ass Anthrax look like shit. I have spoken.
Rob Halford started things off stormily with a majestic 35 minute set that was mind blowing metal at its finest. 8 songs, beginning with 2 from his new album, including opening title track "Resurrection." This is coming out in the states this tuesday, and if those 2 tracks are any indication, it is going to be excellent. Rumor was Dickinson may have joined for a song since he does help out on a track on Halford's album, but this never materialized.
Halford and his young guns then went into the opening track to Fight's first disc, "into the pit." By this point the crowd was mostly fully arrived and total mayhem ensued when we all heard the strains of Priest's "The Hellion"... a powerful version as well, it led seamlessly into "Electric Eye" of course. The crowd went wild as Halford held his vocal well into the 10 second range several times... what conditioning. It was an honor to see this man live, he has in my opinion lost none of his punch. "Breaking the Law" precursored the surprise of the evening: a performance of "Tyrant"! A song Priest themselves haven't done I am told since 1980.
I am not very familiar with Queensryche's entire catalog so my review of their performance will unfortunately be short, especiallyt since I thought they were ever so slightly flat (which can't be a surprise when Tate said after the show via a radio interview they didn't bother rehearsing) but the ones I remember are opener "Revolution Calling," "Speak", "Take Hold of the Flame," an excellent version of "Queen of the Ryche" (which Tate remarked after the show on this same 102.7fm WNEW radio interview hadn't been done live in several years), "Empire" (which was perhaps their strongest song of the night) and closing with a rippingly good shot of "Eyes of A Stranger," which even included some ad lib spoken word post-solo from Tate. No "Silent Lucidity" which was a surprise but in his interview on radio after the show Tate said they will most likely perform it here and there during the tour.
Iron Maiden, what can be said of this legendary band? An excellent performance, with Bruce's energy level through the roof, what with his insane jumping and climbing the oddly misshapen metallic ladders on the stage. Supposedly there are 6 tractor trailers on this tour of Maiden's pyrotechnic display alone, and it showed with fireworks during beginning and end of set, and of course long orange flames that I from my vantage point in the arena actually felt the warmth of when they were going off.
Maiden performed the first 6 tracks from Brave New World in a set that obviously centered on their new material, with an especially good performance of "Blood Brothers" and "Dream of Mirrors." Along the way we also heard "Wrathchild," "2 minutes to midnight," "The Trooper," "The Evil that Men Do," and "Fear of the Dark" before closing the regular set with (of course) "Iron Maiden." The encore consisted of "Number of the beast", "Hallowed Be Thy Name," and "Sanctuary." Hmm, no "run to the hills" or "powerslave"! Too bad. No songs from "Somwhere In Time" either. At the close of show Ross Halfin, legendary metal and rock photographer, took pics of a cheering Garden crowd.
An excellent show, but $30 for a concert shirt is too much, arrgh! I'd give this show an 8 and a half out of ten, maybe even a nine. The best opening of a show I've ever been to, Halford's new band really blew me away, and a good overall performance from three of the greatest vocalists in metal history. See this tour when it comes to you.
Bogart's, Cincinnati Ohio, November 24, 1999.
I had a serious woody for this show from the start because of the Samhain reunion. I saw Danzig in '94 when the original band was together, and didn't really expect this set to top that one.
AFI...Asking For It.
Well, this band sucked. They played well, but their song writing ability was horrible in my opinion. They sounded as if they wanted to be the Offspring meets the Misfits, and that's just WRONG! However...The singer was very charasmatic, and the band had a really good attitude in general, like they'd be cool people. I have to give them points for that, even if I wouldn't buy their album. They REALLY gave props to Samhain, like Danzig wasn't even on the bill.
HOLY SHIT. I could leave this part of the review at that and be satisfied, but I realize that not everyone got to see this. Samhain put on one of the greatest shows I've ever seen. I was totally speechless afterwards. Glenn was more fired up for this set than I've ever seen him. They played for about 20 minutes, then the lights went dark. About 5 or so minutes later, when they came back out, you guessed it! They were covered in blood! The crowd went MENTAL! Glenn mentioned that this show almost didn't happen, because the drummer threw his shoulder out a day or two before. His statement was more or less that they slammed that motherfucker back in place so they could play. Can you say OUCH? I actually wished that Samhain had headlined instead of Danzig, but don't tell anyone....
Well, what can be said of a group called Danzig that doesn't include Chuck Biscuits, Eerie Von and John Christ? NOT DANZIG!
First of all, I really think that Glenn should have done either Samhain or Danzig, but not both. He doesn't have the lungs for that anymore. Danzig opened with "Five Finger Crawl", and you could barely hear him during the quiet verses. He was totally out of breath for the entire set. The best song from 6 done live is "Lilin", as Jim pointed out in a Danzig discussion some time ago. That was really great to hear live. My other problem with the "new" Danzig live show is their apparent dislike of the old material. They rushed through the songs, playing them twice as fast, almost as if they wished they really didn't have to play them at all. Plus they didn't play "Snakes Of Christ", which has to be some kind of blasphemy.
For me, the two best parts of this set were the light show, which was amazing, (not Pink Floyd grade, but who is?), and the closing song, which was Earth AD.
Overall, I'd have to say that I probably wouldn't do this particular show over again, unless it was to see Samhain exclusively.
|March Metal Meltdown, 2000|
ok,so as many of you know,I found myself without a ride last minute. So what do I do?I decide to WALK.Thats right,WALK.Thats fuckin metal..So after a big breakfest,I began my 2 state trek to the fest. Walking over the bridge?Superscary..theres one part where the walkway beneath you is nothing but wooden planks,and you can see 100+ feet down to the river the whole time,and when cars pass you..the thing shakes.I think I cursed Damien for cancelling on me,as well as every band playing the fest,the entire time I was crossing the bridge...eventually,I made it,and found myself walking down the highway,where there is no sidewalk...great....so Im on the other side of the guardrail,wishing I had a machete,because underbrush,thornbushes,and trees,are coming at me from every which way and Im getting stuck a whole lot...cars passing by must have been laughing their asses off...but whatever,I wasn't letting anyhting stop me...eventually,I made it to the venue.Wow.Ran into some friends(Diecast,Turmoil,Pellet from Relapse);...eventually the doors opened,and the metal began..Diecast went on first,and the vocals kept getting cut..what is it with them getting dicked at metalfests? Well, I got a shout out for walking(as well I should,goddammit!) Ok,then the stupididy begins.I would like to thank Bad Luck 13 for being assholes and getting the show shut down for an hour and screwing up the schedules,therefore making me miss Incantation,Spirit Caravan,and Impaled Nazarene..I didn't pay $55 and walk across 2 states to get dicked over.Eventually,things got back on track and I caught Pig Destroyer on the Relapse stage...ok,what genius puts 2 stages in the same room and has 2 bands playing at once,divided by a curtain?What a bunch of shitheads...anyway,PD was good.The Business,although not really fitting in at this bill,put on a good show...the almighty Shadows Fall rocked it next,and they were FUCKING INCREDIBLE.Wow.Get their new album on April 4,by all means!!!Next up were God Forbid,and they were just as amazing as they always are.Assed out.Turmoil was next,and despite shitty sound for the 1st 2 songs,they turned it around and played great.And I got another shoutout for walking.You're damn right.Not to toot my own horn,but I daresay I am the most hardcore,dedicated motherfucker..who else WALKS 2 states to get to a show?Damn..I'm retarded..anyway,I caught a couple wrestling matches, 1st one was 2 scrubs I've never seen before,then it was Blue Meanie(who lost A LOT of weight) vs.(get this) Doink the Clown!!(meanie won)..I missed the Jasmin St Clair/Missy Hyatt evening gown match,sorry guys....I saw Jasmin later that night,and she actually looked damn good...the Blue Meanie was hanging all over her too..heh...anyhow,back to the music,Ill Nino played,and they were actually pretty good...they covered Soulfly's "Eye For an Eye"...not sure why,but whatever...E-Town Concrete palyed next,and were ridiculius yet oh-so-good as usual.Then Skinlab,who actually put on a REAL good show..I mean,I like them,but they usually dont do anything for me live,but this night they were on point,and even busted out their Brujeria cover(sweet!)...finally,was SOD.Of course they were great.And were they funny as hell?Why wouldn't they be?...so I actually found a place to crash(thank you Dave and Jeff Haines)We got there bright and early at 11 the next morning,thinking Catch 22 was playing,and also wondering what a ska-punk band was doing on the bill...well,it makes sense now,since the Catch 22 that played was some dumb cheesy metal band..*sigh*...so while I was waiting for As Darknes Falls,this band Eleison takes the stage..while Im waiting for ADF, Eleison plays,my jaw drops,and I completely miss ADF...holy shit.Vegan black metal with sick breakdowns a-la Undying.Wow.Then I watched Redline...Anal Blast was disappointing,no ridiculous nonsense on stage,no naked metal chicks getting bottles or microphones stuck in their nether regions...what a let down...oh well...Overthrow was next,and were damn good,even though there was like 12 people watching them...then I watched Cephalic Carnege..pretty good...then it was time for All Out War...literally and figuratively..holy shit,they were SICK.Chimaira was next,and their down tuned,dreadlocked heavyness was damn impressive.Next up was Converge,and I gotta say this was the best I've ever seen them play..fuckin AMAZING...I ended up talkin to Jasmin St. Clair for a while after this...she was actually pretty cool,and pretty funny.go figure...anyway,off to see Dying Fetus...holeeeee SHIT! Fucking brutal.Mortician was next,with their brand of fuzzy repetitious death.Not bad by any means,but I'm biased against them now,because I saw pictures of Will Rahmer with swastikas ans SS skulls on his jacket.Fuck that.Time for Dillinger Escape Plan,and well..they managed to actually hold my attention for the whole set...no G'N'R cover this time tho..heh.Then Darkest Hour..they got through one song, sounded GREAT,then the bitchass soundman pulled the plug on them because the singer accidentally broke a monitor screen.Hmmph.So I went to watch Immolation...not bad.Then it was time to do the W with Witchery....they were good,but I was REALLY tired by this point,so I was sitting down watching them,throwing the W up on occasion....next was Immortal's 1st ever US show,and well...they must hate America now. The sound kept going out in the middle of their songs,and then they got the plug pulled on them and told they couldnt play aymore..what the fuck?Well,when they did play,they sounded good,and I cant wait to see em later this month at the Troc.All in all,I had a blast,and it was worth the walk.
More metal than your ma's kettle,
The Vogue, Indianapolis, IN
This show certainly does not qualify as a Death Metal or Hardcore show obviously. However, it was a live show, and I felt the need to review it.
The opening act was Eric Sardinas. WHO? That's what I said. Postcards in the bar had quotes like; "If Satan had a blues band, this would be it.", and "...The man's musicianship is a gonad-smashing wonder of nature. First of all, if Satan had a blues band, Al Jourgensen would lead it. Secondly, my gonads were never in any danger whatsoever.
The band sounded like they didn't soundcheck. It was as if they just set up and went on. The drums were WAY to loud. At one point in the show, Sardine boy knocked his mic stand over while picking his guitar wildly, and hit a guy in the front row with it. Much laughing ensued. He also seemed extremely uncomfortable singing with the mic. He would repeatedly get to close to it, making it sound like they turned the volume way up on his mic for a second. The song writing was terrible. The drums were horribly loud. My basic impression was that this man is a no talent ass clown. Someone needs to have a serious talk with him and explain to him that he is not, and never will be Stevie Ray Vaughn. He played 48 minutes, and we were bored after 5.
Steve Vai. I promise I will keep this short. Or not. I've been a big fan of Steve's for the last 13 years, and this was my first opportunity to see him live. From the moment Steve walked out on stage, wearing a hat with three lit tentacles, I was completely mesmerized. This man is NOT a guitar hero. He surpasses that a hundred fold. He sang all lead vocals, (which were really good), and had an infectious sense of humor.
The mix was off at first, with Steve's guitar being smothered by the rhythm guitar, but that was quickly corrected. Steve's guitar went out at the beginning of one song, and he stopped, laughed and said, "I'm so embarrassed, they REALLY need me for this one." He handled the technical problems so well. Unlike previous guitar concerts I've seen where Yngwie Malmsteen's guitar quit. He hurled it at his tech, flipped off the crowd, (who were chanting his name), and stormed off stage for 20 minutes, leaving his band without a clue about how to go ahead with the show. But enough about that silly Viking wannabe. Vai would have none of it. NOTHING was going to spoil his night. It was obvious that he loves playing live. He played an excellent variety of material from Flex-able, to The Ultra Zone. They also did a hilarious rendition of Led Zeppelin's Black Dog, with helium to Death Metal fluctuating vocals. Steve changed one verse to "Robert Plant's gonna kick my ass, when he hears", then uncontrollable laughter, so he never finished the line.
The drummer. Wow. This guy could play Death Metal any day of the week. He was amazing. Easily the best drum solo I've ever seen live. More explanation would tarnish the performance.
There were actually three highlights of the evening for me. The first was Voodoo Acid live. Steve told us a story about him on acid in college at Berkley. He and his band did a sex dance, (part of the song, if you don't know, don't ask), and I laughed seemingly forever. Secondly, Steve got out his triple-neck heart shaped Ibanez for a killer solo. Remember that from the David Lee Roth days? Incidentally, earlier in the evening he had a guitar that glowed blue fretboard dots in the dark. Cool stuff. Last but not least was the live performance of For The Love Of God. Already an amazing song from my favorite Vai album, it was even more passionate live. This was absolutely the strongest part of the show.
Knowing the general consensus of the DMHC ranks about "guitar heros", I debated for several hours on whether I should even review this show. Then I figured out what Steve Vai actually is. He is not a guitar hero. He is a composer. He is an incredible musician. He is a vocalist. He is an extremely charasmatic band leader with an easy going attitude and a sense of humor from hell. I'd put him right up there with the likes of Beethoven, Bach and Mozart any day.
You can check Steve out at
The Official Steve Vai Website - http://www.vai.com
|Napalm Death, Konkhra|
Abart Music Club, Zürich (Switzerland)
Oct 3, 1999
For some reason that escapes my knowledge, Napalm Death played their Swiss show on this European tour in the Abart Music Club in Zürich, an extremely small club with a stage hardly over a foot high. Why it is we deserve such a blessing shall forever remain a mistery, but it made for one of the best extreme Metal shows in Switzerland this year, that much is for sure. But I'm getting ahead of myself.
First up was some "Special Guest" band whose name I seem to have forgotten already, which is really all there is to say about them. I'll say more anyway. They had some decent fast/groovy transitions and some cool Slayer-type riffs, but all in all, their songs all sounded the same. The singer was trying way too hard to sound like Evan Seinfeld, which is utterly ridiculous considering they were otherwhise a Metal band. Sounded to me like they wanted to be Metal but were scared of not being "cool" anymore. Bitches.
Then Konkhra. I have their first album, "Sexual Affective Disorder", and no matter how much they're sucking up to the HC scene now, I still think that's a great album, heavy as fuck, completely sick and twisted and with a relatively original sound to it. These days, they just play Metal/Punk, the singer tries to sing melodically... and it's really just sad. I found myself reiterating the line "The Offspring look a lot less fat in their videos, man, isn't it amazing what they can do with computers these days?" quite frequently. Let me state once again that in my world, there is hardly anything more despicable than all former DM bands that changed their style when DM wasn't the flavor of the month again.
Konkhra should at least have the decency to change their name, this has nothing, I repeat NOTHING to do with Konkhra anymore, and I won't let it pass as a "development" either, because it's too obvious they jumped off the DM ship like rats when it was sinking.
Then, finally, came Napalm Death. Oh blimey. Haven't seen such a violent mosh pit in like, forever. This reminded me of why I sometimes miss going to HC shows. Fucking great. Of course, as usual, they played basically stuff from "Scum" and their new album, which is a pity, because personally, I think "Utopia Banished" is the pinnacle of their musical achievement, and they only played one song off that one ("I Abstain"). Still, the new songs have some great mosh parts and enough blast beats, so who's complaining? Great crowd, great band, I only wish I didn't have to drive home because I couldn't booze up and had to tone down the going insane in the moshpit. Oh well. It was a killer show anyway.