Amplifier, Perth WA
October 8th, 2017
Support: Brujeria, Lockup and Black Rheno
It’s been a decent couple of years since Perth has witnessed the forefathers or pioneers of Extreme Metal. Of course, Napalm Death have spent around thirty years paving the way in this area and they’re still going strong! Well, the Brits are back for the ‘Campaign for Musical Destruction’ tour, and they brought a few mates along for the ride (and the riffs). The crowd were certainly no psuedo-metal fans, posers or wannabes; gigs like this are for the serious metal-heads, you know, the ones that let you know about it in ink on their faces – I love this culture.
Aussie trio Black Rheno were blasting their chaotic mayhem across Amplifier from the second doors opened, and the dudes were here to ensure they had a sick time. Bald vocalist Milla brought a strong King Parrot flavour to the front-man role, jumping around on stage and in the pit, challenging the folded-arm-punters for some movement. The Sydney-siders engaged with the crowd, encouraging involvement, circle pits and laughs all round. A grungy death metal set, a wall of death, and a head-bang stretch for the neck – what more could you really ask for to get the action started? Look out for these guys, they might just be onto something here.
Lockup were the next cab off the ranks – a band who have actually played very few live shows before. Reigning from the UK as well, the band is known as somewhat of a supergroup, including bassist Shane Embury (of Napalm Death) who had a triple set for the evening (playing with Brujeria as well). The band came on stage and delivered blast beats on fast forward. The landscape was a sea of long curly hair flowing in the air to the detonating sound of slamming riffs. The venue was packed and the circle pit was hot. Faded band hoodies and matted hair swarmed across the quadrant shaped band room. Vocalist Kevin Sharp had the look and energy of Slayer’s Tom Araya and the voice of Satan himself mixed with Otto Mann, tearing his oesophegus apart on stage. The band played a mix of new and old material, best described as grimey and sludgy death metal.
Making their debut on Australian shores were Mexican band Brujeria, a nationality of musicians that I had never heard deliver metal before, and a band who have been around since the late 80s. Of the two vocalists, one was wearing a leather waistcoat with no under-shirt, and the other wearing a checkered Mexican buttoned shirt. The whole band sported their Tijuana heritage with bandanas over their faces. The group delivered ground slamming extreme metal, all delivered in Spanish with wild aggression and intensity. The aesthetic was bassy with chaotic rhythm and speed. The entire set was one of the most unique I’ve ever seen, in a refreshing way. They prefaced a track by asking if the crowd had been listening radio and been on the internet. They then reminded us of the U.S.President and chanted “Fuck Donald Trump” repeatedly. The Mexican outfit continued to play killer tracks from their first album in seventeen years. They left the excitable crowd hanging out for more as they concluded with a Spanish rendition of ‘The Macarena’ but replaced the title lyric with “Marijuana” – hilarious and bad-ass.
As the night drew closer to midnight, the almighty Napalm Death burst onto stage to turn the volume up to eleven. Vocalist Barney Greenway jumped on stage with absolute utter and explosive energy. The front-man’s face was ever-changing as he transcended into the dimension of chaos carnage. The extreme metal veterans casted a range of their crusty, grimey and sludgy back catalogue. Between Greenway’s belching lows and the other band members’ piercing highs, the senses were experiencing an overload of metal wonder. “We are Napalm Death from Birmingham, England” Greenway announced. The vocalist introduced several songs with a very quick introduction but spared no time to be missing out on playing music. He continued to move around as if his skin was crawling with bugs; the fans loved the energy. Napalm Death certainly demonstrated their history on stage, and brought everyone along for the epic journey with them.
Gig Review by Ricky Aarons @rickysaul90
Photo Gallery by Denis Radacic. Please credit Den Rad and Wall of Sound if you reuse.
Napalm Death – 2017 Australian Tour