Saturday, July 23, 2016

Concert Review: One Foot In The Grave Tour (July 22, 2016)


    Very rarely do you have such a diverse line-up featuring a selection of extremely talented acts from different areas of the metal spectrum. The One Foot In The Grave tour may have had four bands who sounded different, but they all happened to have undeniable passion for the music while up on stage. Who would have thought to have Carcass, Crowbar, Ghoul and Night Demon on the same bill? Well, it happened and let me tell you what this killer tour package brought to Sacramento. 

    After making the metal pilgrimage from Rohnert Park to Sacramento and getting stuck in the well known I-80 traffic, I finally arrived at Ace of Spades in downtown Sacramento. I was really impressed by the layout of this venue and how the stage was setup. Also, talk about a strong turnout and even before the opener, the crowd was taking up most of the floor space. I had a feeling that with such a diverse line-up that this could draw out all kinds of metal maniacs. Again, whoever put together this tour really did something special and in my opinion a bit rare when it comes to North American tours. 

    Opening the show was Ventura, CA’s very own NWOBHM-style soldiers Night Demon. This would mark my fifth time seeing Night Demon. I can’t believe that about two years ago I saw them playing at a small bar in SF and now they were opening for Carcass. Hard work and dedication can honestly take you places and Night Demon is living proof of that. Starting their set off with some epic cinematic music, the band then proceeded to burst out the song, “Ritual,” from their debut EP. The crowd was really getting into it as bassist/singer Jarvis Leatherby and guitarist Armand John Anthony feverishly played away on stage. Drummer Dusty Squires was pounding away on his kit and the drum parts to songs like, “Curse of the Damned” and “The Chalice,” sounded titanic at times. During, “Curse of the Damned,” the band really invoked the crowd’s inner metal spirit and people were throwing their hands up and rocking out the entire time. The band concluded their set with the self-titled song from their first EP and I was singing along until the last verse. 

Night Demon

    After Night Demon’s highly enjoyable set, Ghoul quickly began setting up for what would be their set of wild splatter thrash music. I saw Ghoul open up for Gwar awhile back and could not wait to hear some wicked riffs and get sprayed with fake blood. The crowd started making more of a push towards the front, because these headbangers in the audience did not seem to care about getting some fake blood on them. The cannibal thrashers from Creepsylvania walked out on stage and proceeded to rip into a crushing song. Also, in between their songs they had some visitors from Creepsylvania who ended up getting hacked up or disemboweled, but no matter what, they sprayed fake blood into the crowd. Ghoul also played some songs off of their new album which I believe comes out later this month. “Shred the Dead” was one of new tracks I really liked and the new material is definitely worth checking out. Cremator and Digestor also have some of the best stage banter and I think they deserve their own talk show. Overall, Ghoul knew how to appease the Ghoulunatics during their set with plenty of thrash and fake blood. 


    The third act of the night would not be spraying any blood into the audience, but instead cranking up the volume with some good old fashion New Orleans sludge. It would be my first time seeing Crowbar live and I could not wait to hear what Kirk Windstein and the other dudes in the band had to offer. Not only does Kirk have the beard of doom, but he has the riffs of doom. From the start of their set the guitar tone was extremely heavy and addicting. You just wanted to keep hearing those slow behemoth sized riffs. I noticed that the band had a good mix of old material from different albums and even threw in some of the new tracks that I personally enjoy like, “Walk With Knowledge Wisely.” Plus, only Crowbar can take a Led Zeppelin song like, “No Quarter,” and turn it into a crushing riff onslaught. The entire band sounded tight throughout their set, which contained killer riffs and planet colliding compositions. 


    Ending the night of diverse and epic metal music was the surgical themed death lords, Carcass, from Liverpool, UK. Talk about an iconic and influential band that has had a brilliant career. Also, after not releasing an album for some time, the band put out what in my opinion was one of the best metal albums of 2013, “Surgical Steel.” Right when they walked on stage, Carcass was given a loud welcome as they tore into the first cut of death metal madness. Jeff Walker is a great frontman and not too shabby of a bass player. Bill Steer played some phenomenal guitar leads and the riffs him and fellow guitarist Ben Ash played were undeniably brutal. Drummer Daniel Wilding is a technical machine behind the kit and gave quite a drum lesson while up on stage. 

    I noticed during their set a few people would shout certain classic songs they wanted to hear, which I honestly get annoyed with at times. The newer material like the song, “The Granulating Dark Satanic Mills,” is an amazing song with one hell of a catchy chorus. So, new songs or classics I don’t mind...It all sounds damn good! The band also threw into the set, “Keep on Rotting the Free World,” where they even asked a member from the audience to come up on stage and sing a verse for them. Unfortunately, the first person they picked forgot the words, but they found another person to help them out. To conclude, Carcass put on one crushing set and the Sacramento audience let them know how much they appreciated the band by making endless noise until the last note faded. 


    By the end of the night I was pretty tired along with most of the people in the crowd. There may have been only four bands, but the energy coming from the stage was never ending. I must say that The One Foot in The Grave tour is something I would like to see more often. You had old school classic NWOBHM from Night Demon, splatter thrash from Ghoul, massive sized sludge riffs from Crowbar and feverish surgical death metal from Carcass...if anyone could not find something enjoyable to take away from that line-up, they deserve to get a foot in the rear end and fall right down into a grave. There may have been a difference in sound and style, but what these bands showed was that it is the passion for heavy metal that can make for one evening of great metal music.  

1 comment:

  1. Could tell reading your review, you really dug the different metal bands coming together & performing last night, and that they should do more often.