The Woolly Mammoth, Brisbane QLD
February 18th, 2018
Supports: Amicable Treason and Eternal Rest and Psycroptic
Walking into the venue, you can’t help but admire the sea of black shirts and battle vests. The Woolly Mammoth seems an odd place to hold a metal concert. Thankfully, as you enter, you don’t really care as this place does something other places in Brisbane just don’t – I’m talking about good air-conditioning. Yeah, I know, I’m talking about air-conditioning, but it’s Brisbane, it’s unicorn rare. Okay?
First up are the delightful Amicable Treason who are fronted by the always enjoyable Hamish McSorley who you may know from his other band Chronolyth. Sporting a death metal shirt with rainbows on the front (please let me know where I can get one) he cuts a rather dashing and angry figure as he screeches into the microphone, while the band pummel your senses into dust. Their dynamic range is the real winner here as it sends people into headbanging fits and leaves everyone sufficiently pumped for the next band.
Subsequent band Eternal Rest get off to a good start, sporting the kind of death metal riffs that make you want to punch holes in the walls. The real standout here is their menacing front-man Shanon Davern. He cuts a menacing figure, his shirtless physique glistening under the hot stage lights, as he ravages the microphone, the brutal vocals tightening his dripping six pack. Leaving the crowd gagging, as they drown in a vast abyss of malice and despair.
From here, It’s pretty safe to say there’s going to be no staring at your phones when Psycroptic take to the stage. Greeted by their faithful. The room suddenly filling to the brim with people who seemingly materialised out of thin air. Their intense stage presence and ominous brutality spew forth on all within the room. The place fast becomes a flurry of limbs, drunk bro hugs and all round mayhem, looking less like a metal show and more like a prison riot. They continual just hammer you into the ground, while the ground shakes underneath you from the mayhem ensuing on and off the stage. Their well oiled machine is an unmissable experience.
Okay, now to explain a Cattle Decapitation concert. Imagine you’re in the African wilderness, now imagine you’re being chased by a herd of elephants and then they crush you under their feet, only for a pride of lions to come by a feast on your corpse, ripping you into pieces. Well, now we’ve come close to what it’s like to see Cattle Decapitation live.
Opening with the gloriously chaotic ‘The Carbon Stampede’ is an apt choice. The guitar work of Josh Elmore reaching straight for your jugular. Front-man Travis Ryan regaling us all with his many styled death metal vocal gymnastics. Subsequent song ‘Dead Set on Suicide’ ups the ante even further, the crowd launching into an even bigger frenzy of uncontrollable chaos. I cannot understate the impressive ability of their front-man, who excels into giving us all a greatest hits of some of the best death metal vocals the genre has to offer. Going from pig squeals, to screeching clean sections is simply masterful.
Tonight is heavily focused on their last two albums, not that anyone is complaining and why should they? When both albums represent two of the best albums in the death metal pantheon. The level of technicality under the maelstrom ensuing onstage leaves the crowd in awe. Cuts such as ‘Clandestine Ways’ and the Earth shattering ‘Regret & The Grave’ leave the crowd picking themselves up off the floor. The best is saved for last with the now iconic ‘Forced Gender Reassignment’ having one of the biggest receptions of the night with the crowd feasting upon every word and giving their bodies as tribute to the achingly beautiful destruction being played upon the stage.
But it’s not over yet as the band leaves the stage before coming onstage for their encore. The breather reinvigorating the crowd, as the band gives them the reckoning they so obviously desire before screeching off into the night and out of our lives once again.
Review by Kaydan Howison
Cattle Decapitation – Extinction Tour
Monday February 19th @ Tetsuo, Perth WA