Live Review by Gaw
Abducted Metal and Horror Festival
The Arena, Brisbane; 21th July 2007
Brisvegas as many of us call it isnt exactly known as the most exciting city in Australia. It hasnt got Sydneys harbour, Melbournes sporting heart or Adelaides churches. But Brisbane does have one thing Sydney at least cannot lay claim to not one, but two annual metal festivals! So just as the Queensland metal masses were recovering from the carnage of Overcranked, along came the Abducted Metal and Horror Festival. The concept was the combination of Australias most brutal bands and most depraved amateur film-makers, a mix that made for a fantastic evening of entertainment. Of course it was impossible to see all bands but what follows is a sample of what was on offer.
The first band I saw was Gold Coasts own Lynchmada who delivered a tight set laden with heavy groove. The subtle melodies and hardcore-style vocals went down a treat with an appreciative crowd. Ill definitely be looking out for them if they venture south. The melodic death metal assault of Sakkuth followed on the downstairs stage. The bands first show in ten months featured old favourites plus material from their forthcoming CD Murderous Intent. It is unfortunate that due to time constraints their very entertaining set was cut short.
Back upstairs The Day Everything Became Nothing were working their way through their pig-grunt grind assault. Whilst enjoyable, I find that they actually grab my attention more when they apply the brakes a tad; the grind is fun but the slower groove is what really gets the mosh moving, and did so fantastically tonight. Sunshine Coast deathsters Excruciate destroyed the downstairs stage with their awesome pummelling grind/black assault. Not previously familiar with the band, their mixture of blast beats and slower passages converted this fan, as Im sure it did others. Following their set, Function Cease delivered a helping of fast death metal which had heads banging in the upstairs area.
Terrorust have honed their death assault to a fine art. On this occasion their furious ultra-grind decimated the masses, and kept them begging for more punishment. Personally I find their music makes more sense on CD; perhaps it was more the mix that was to blame, however the loyal fans who went crazy in the pit certainly didnt agree with me. After watching a few short zombie flicks, one in which a long-haired flannel-wearing metal head saves the day, I caught Fuck... Im Dead, whos short and sweet bursts of depravity with titles such as Find, Torture and Kill and Anal Abattoir certainly were appropriate for the theme of the night.
Five Star Prison Cell impressed on the upstairs stage. Australias premier math-metal outfit covered material from both The Complete First Season and Slaves of Virgo. The voice-synthesiser that is Adam Glynn was impressive as the crowd jumped and insanity ensued. It was my first time seeing the band live and I was extremely impressed with their live delivery of what is rather complex material. Back downstairs Sydneys Daysend delivered a tight set of melodic metal which left their fans more than satisfied. The band were much tighter than when I caught them last but Im still not convinced that Mark McKernan was the right choice to replace the departed Simon Calabrese. His screams are more than adequate but the big melodic choruses that are a trademark of the bands sound could have been delivered more convincingly.
Returning to the upstairs stage, Earth delivered the set of the night. This is a band who in my opinion cannot play a bad show. Their brutal mix of old school Swedish-influenced death metal and melodic keyboards hits all the right buttons; and in the live arena their energy and delivery is second-to-none. Their brilliant 2002 album The Bleeding Fields made up much of tonights set, with the added bonus of new material rounding out the set. I for one cannot wait for the band to record and release their proposed new album, which should be killer!
Evergreen favourites Mortal Sin played a shortened set which spanned all Maurer-era albums. Kicking off with the usual opener Voyage of the Disturbed, other highlights included Lebanon, its sequel Tears of Redemption and the classic Mayhemic Destruction As with every time the Mortals play, the band were clearly having a ball on stage, and were thoroughly enjoyable. Upstairs Pod People were finishing their set of doom-meets- whatever they feel like incorporating. An appreciative crowd headbanged in unison to the Canberrans metal assault.
Crowd favourites Blood Duster followed downstairs. Due to scheduling conflicts I only caught a snippet of their set, but the new material from the excellent Lyden Na CD was well delivered and received, with the trademark humour the band is known for well in the mix.
The last band of the evening was the mighty Alchemist. With a new album only weeks away the psychedelic legends delivered their usual blend of styles with vigour. Classics Yoni Kunda and Chinese Whispers (arguably the bands two best songs) did their part in getting the mosh heaving and new material from the forthcoming Tripsis was also well received. Anticipation of a High and Wrapped in Guilt seem to be heavier and faster than songs from the bands last offering, with an urgency and a heavy bottom end to the material.
By the time the last notes of Eve of the War had been played, those present had been subject to eight hours of pummelling metal. With numb ears and covered in sweat, the punters filed out of The Arena and into the night, the first Abducted festival having been a roaring success.
Review by Gaw