Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Summer Slaughter Tour @ the Masquerade

This was my first Summer Slaughter experience, normally package tours aren't my thing as the rarely have more than two bands I like , this year broke that streak so I ventured out. The crowd was pretty much what I expected from Atlanta a blend of the school battle vest metal hipsters mixed in with more trailer park elements with a few bros on the side, the high death metal quota eliminated the more awkward prog metal geek types. So basically Business as usual and business was good.
The doors were way early, I think I just finished getting a prescription filled when they opened. I milled around looked at merch and checked schedules, set up interviews and such, before I wandered into catch Goatwhore. This was my first time catching them, despite being an avid Acid Bath fan, the stars just never aligned. I have most of their albums, so was pretty familiar with their material. Even then these guys were caught me by surprise and we the most fun I had all night, coming in tied with Morbid Angel for being the best act of the night. They possessed a ton of energy, Louis's stage persona, was down to earth, he rocked with you not at you, but still maintained the needed air of metal majesty to control and command the crowd. Sonically, they had great tone, were not a bunch of booming loudness, but their riffs were very distinguishable. At times the transported me back to my days as a kid seeing classic thrash bands like Testament, Vio-lence and Overkill. The black metal elements were not as prevalent live and there was not a sense like when seeing Watain that something evil was coming your way. They are trying to have fun not open any portals and that worked for me. Next up I caught locals Death of Kings. They played to a much smaller crowd on the mid level stage. The was iffy, they did not have the clarity in their riffs Goatwhore had due to this. Having seen them before, the Iron Maiden elements were toned down. They sometimes came off like thrashy death metal. The singing much more high end screeching , than their last 7 inch suggested. This gave it a more Laaz Rockit feel. The drumming continues to be a strong point. My girl friend felt that their song writing was geared to focus on the shreddy sections of soloing. I don't really see them as a shred band, as they tend to hit the frequent soloing with a more Kerry King wild abandon than anything technical.They seemed to go over well with the crowd that did catch them and are worth checking out if you like a more bombast take on thrash. The Faceless lost me on their last album which was too much like mall metal for my tastes. I liked "Planetary Duality", but the last one seemed like djenty mall metal. They continue to rock the suburbs live, as their tone is so processed to shred that it lost any balls and for all the break downs in the world, they could not convince me they were heavy. Guitarist Micheal Keene's attempt at clean vocals was pretty sad, they were weak and even being heavily auto tuned, the pitch elements shone through the layer of effect he tried to hide them behind. It seemed that not only Goatwhore have a bigger crowd, but the crowd was more into them, so good music won out for once.
This was my 6th time seeing Morbid Angel, so you would think it would be o.k here we go again, but they really impressed me. The last album that drew so much internet back lash did not make me tuck my forked tail and run, but I am glad that it doesn't appear from the live show that we are going to have to have an industrial era of Morbid Angel like we had a disco era Kiss...though truth be told I like both disco Kiss and Vegas Elvis... and can also tolerate cock rock Celtic Frost. This was my first time seeing them without Pete the feet, but they held up and even kicked ass. Hearing "Fall From Grace" in and of it's self made me happy as "Blessed Are the Sick" is my favorite album by them. David Vincent sounded great holding down his goth clean vocals as well as his growls, there was a moment when early on he stopped playing bass to make a rock star posed and I yelled for him to play his fucking bass, but other than that brief stage indulgence they were great and inspired me to dig up all the old albums. Overall this package had less of a mall metal feel and is recommended to check out when it hits your town. If you are in Europe and abbreviated version with Dying Fetus , Goatwhore and Fallujah is coming your way this winter.

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