Super-group is a term thrown around far to wildly these days. Few of these groups are really super at all musically and their output often fails to live up to the hype. However, in the case of LOCK-UP they fulfilled their promise early and often with Pleasures Pave Sewers and Hate Breeds Suffering. These were albums made with all-star lineups of death metal royalty; turning in masterful and sick grindcore albums for the ages. Then as sometimes happens with these super-groups, members get too busy with their main bands or life just gets in the way. After the death of founding member Jesse Pintado (TERRORIZER) who coined the name grindcore, the band reunited in 2011 the record Necropolis Transparent. Due to scheduling and visa issues the band had never toured the USA, but now for a few weeks this year the band hit American soil in full force. If you blinked, forgot or just didn’t go, you missed out. Metal Army America was at the third show of the tour in Revere, MA at the Wonderland Ballroom to bring you in on all the action we heard, saw and felt.
Since work caused me to miss a local band or two I managed to get in the venue in time to catch then of PANZERBASTARD’s set. As usual they are loud as fuck and rowdy fun. Sort of a proto-metal and punk attitude of MOTORHEAD and D.R.I. All rolled into one. Always fun to see the beleaguered sound guys try to manage their ever increasing volume too! They have an EP you should pick up asap if you love fun, heavy music.
STRONG INTENTION was up next and they were the first of the touring bands. The band has been around for about 20 years although not always active. Born and bred in Maryland, but with a heart straight outta New York Hardcore the band has always been about aggressive songs, smart lyrics and a good time. Or as they put it on their shirts, “grindcore for assholes”. Ah, gotta love bands with self-deprecating senses of humor. They hit the stage to the still filling up room and immediately ripped into a strong set of their best material like “Carnivore” and “Consumer Sucker”. In addition to founding front man Zac, they were also joined by Sparky formerly of MISERY INDEX and D.R.I. They were definitely aware of the generation gap between them and the young-ish crowd and poked fun at themselves during their short set. The were a might unit musically, harsh and tight as they oughtta be.
It seemed like a good bunch of the crowd was in the house to see GOATWHORE on this night and it’s easy to see why. GOATWHORE has played the New England area about fifteen times in the last two or three years and they have never been anything less than fierce each time. With their excellent new album Blood For The Master (Metal Blade) just about to drop before this show, the excitement was sky high. With the lights up they checked their gear one last time before slamming into “Collapse In Eternal Worth”, the lead track of the new album. Everybody seemed to know the song and the front of the pit crushed against the little stage with no barricade. As front man Ben Falgoust is want to do, he gets right in the hostile and happy faces of the crowd, ruling the microphone. The bands bare bones approach to songs leaves little to guess at and causes maximum damage to ear drums. Not even taking a mini-breath after the first song they launched into “Provoking the Ritual of Death”. Drummer Zack Simmons was just killing it with his tight, economical style of blasts and double bass work. As always Sammy Duet brings the killer riffs and is an awesome performer with his stage presence. The fans equally lapped up old school jams such as “Alchemy of The Black Sun Cult” and “Sky Inferno”with new songs like “Judgement of the Bleeding Crown”. Closing with their classic “Apocalyptic Havoc” GOATWHORE does what they always do best, destroy.
Collapse In Eternal Worth
Provoking the Ritual of Death
The Black Art of Deception
In Deathless Tradition
Carving Out the Eyes of God
Alchemy of the Black Sun Cult
When Steel and Bone Meet
Judgement of the Bleeding Crown
Invert the Virgin
An End to Nothing
If it was anyone else save for LOCK-UP coming on next, I’d say they would have a hard time following the previous act. Disappointing to me was the the fact that the crowd half-cleared out before LOCK-UP. I think it is more a statement about the rabid fans of GOATWHORE and LOCK-UP’s somewhat lower profile. But really it is no excuse Boston area metal fans! I know Revere is a tough place to get home from late (thanks for the ride home Jason!), but still I was bummed. Not helping the headliners case was they took almost an hour to set up and play which was odd since their gear was used by most of the openers and there wasn’t much to do. Those who stayed late surely would be rewarded big time.
When they were finally ready to come on stage and jam it was like a tiger had been let out of its cage. The band came on stage to the strains of the old POSSESED song “Fallen Angel” and the remaining crowd let out a mini-cheer as each member took their place. Starting right off the bat with “Pleasures Pave Sewers” they really tore the lid off the place. Setting the tone for the rest of the show the vocalist Tomas Lindberg (AT THE GATES, DISFEAR, THE CROWN) lustily ran around the stage smiling maniacally and screaming is guts out. He has always had one of the pinnacle voices in death metal and he sounded great, although he later admitted to having a bad cold. Giving no pause the band reeled of a bunch of songs in rapid succession like “Brethren of the Pentagram”, “Accelerated Mutation” and “Slaughterous Ways” which were terrific. I wasn’t entirely sure were were going to get the great Nick Barker behind the drums, but there he was in all his glory. He was totally relaxed behind the kit, but he was totally crushing it performance wise. Joining him in the grindcore rhythm section for the ages is Danny Lilker (ANTHRAX/S.O.D./NUCULAR ASSAULT/BRUTAL TRUTH) filling in for Shane Embry who is busy with the new NAPALM DEATH album.
Lindberg finally addressed the crowd about this being the bands first time in America and third US show as well. After a few pleasantries the band launched into “Accelerated Mutation” which was just sick. LOCK-UP has had many great guitarists like the a fore mentioned Pintado and another legend Peter Tägtgren. The “new” guy in LOCK-UP is Chilean guitarist Anton Reisenegger (PENTAGRAM (non-US)/CRIMINAL) who was exceptional all night long. He really stood out on tracks like “Triple Six Suck Angels” and “Castrate the Blood”. The band seemed tireless as the blew through cut after cut, some barely a minute long, but all of them heavy and fun. After a touching few words in tribute to Pintado they played two TERORIZOR songs in “Storm of Stress”, “Fear of Napalm”. After a few more blistering originals the band did a solid run through of a DARK ANGEL cover they closed with a triumphant version of “After Life In Purgatory”. It was a great show. I feel bad if you missed it, but hopefully they will come back again.
(Into) Fallen Angel (POSSESSED cover)
Pleasures Pave Sewers
Brethren of the Pentagram
Triple Six Suck Angels
Feeding on the Opiate
Rage Incarnate Reborn
Castrate the Wreckage
High Tide in a Sea of Blood
The Jesus Virus
Storm of Stress (TERRORIZER cover)
Fear of Napalm (TERRORIZER cover)
The Embodiment of Paradox and Chaos
Merciless Death (DARK ANGEL cover)
After Life In Purgatory
Words and photos by Keith (Keefy) Chachkes