Thursday, January 21, 2010

Nile with Immolation, Krisiun, Dreaming Dead, and Scalpel [Worcester Palladium, 1/16/2010]

Atrociously late but still here, this is from more than a week ago now, but it was still a good show and worth the trundling out to. I was coming from class, so this meant parking in Boston rather than doing the train, and paying too much for garaging and the Pike going out of the city, but it paid off in being able to get out on time and end up at the venue only shortly before doors.

After freezing for a bit, they opened up, and I got in and paid my $25 for what turned out to be, surprise surprise, another show moved upstairs at no discount. With this bill, it wasn't a problem, but as noted before, this is going to start bearing on people's decisions to come out before long. Upstairs is a good experience, but traditionally the cost of the ticket scales directly rather than inversely with the size of the hall.

Scalpel [4.5/7]
First time I'd seen these guys, and they put on a good if somewhat generic brutal/slam death performance. They had a lot of people in to see them who provided some good chaos on the floor while the crowd was still filling in, and decent enough material for a local band in the process of coming up. It'll be interesting to see how they develop, and how they go on to find their sound; eastern New England has a fairly large supply of bands in this general style, so if they want to stand out, they're going to need to step it up a notch.

I know that I've seen several of the members of this band in other area bands before, but their metal-archives entry isn't the most informative, and my memory isn't that eidetic. We'll see if I can work out who played with who in the past.

Dreaming Dead [5/7]
This band saw a lot of expectations reset; given the volume of evidence, it is surprising when a band with two female guitarists comes out and plays hard-hitting thrashing death metal rather than some other style. It's also good, which is why, I think, you saw a lot of interest in this combo from attendees. I was more surprised, though, in hearing that they were from L.A.; poorly informed me didn't realize they were touring and thought they were from New Bedford or something. They drilled out a good set limited to some degree by the sound, and definitely impressed; if Paganizer ever makes it over, this would be a good band to open for them.

This was apparently their first real tour, at least supporting a package nationally; while they seemed to be doing decent business when I went to pick up a CD, it might have been better if they'd turned one of the CDs over as well, to show the Ibex Moon logo on the back. John McEntee doesn't mess about when signing quality death metal, and most fans both know this and will be willing to give bands that are on Ibex Moon a fair shake for that alone.

Krisiun [6/7]
Despite the venue, this was about as far back as I've seen Krisiun from in the last four years. The overall effect may not have been as good as immediately previous times, being right on top of the band, but this was a class Krisiun set regardless, and someone else got to have that experience due to me getting stuck at the back. The room was well packed at this point, and arguing by volume that this maybe shouldn't've been moved upstairs.

Immolation [7/7]
On a night of very good performances from the touring heavyweights, Immolation's was at the top of the heap. There's not a lot you can write about this band: they play uniquely brutal yet epic death metal, and they bring it live with impressive ferocity. Their new record isn't out till March, but it's going to be another strong disc from the sounds of it here. Just simply great all around.

As per the last time I saw Immolation, up in New Hampshire two years gone, they didn't play "No Jesus No Beast", despite people yelling for it. It's a good song, but so is their new material; if they want to emphasize that they're an active band still making good new music, that's their choice, but it's always someone's first Immolation show. Crappy argument, I know; maybe the solution is to book Immolation on more festivals where they're pinched for time and playing to a large number of known new audience.

Nile [6.5/7]
If you were also standing around as the techs milled about and Karl tweaked away at his rig, you might have wondered if the score was ever going to get to this level. Nile started off late, delayed by technical problems with what looked like an effects unit; it's due to stuff like this that people come up gnashing their teeth about simplicity in metal, but as the rest of the set demonstrated, it's useful to also have bands that are willing to take the risk of stuff not working in order to bring their studio sound out onto the stage live. When everything finally started working, Nile hit into a class set heavily balanced towards new material that neatly palliated everyone who had been yelling at them to get on with it. Not perfect, but crushing all the same, and a strong conclusion to a killer show.

People had been filtering out all through Nile, probably as a consequence of the delay in starting up, but I stuck till the bitter end, not wanting to miss out on anything that might go forward before the lights went up. I got full value out of my $25, and suspect that most who were in from the start did as well; Abigail Williams dropping off and good performances from the good bands that remained will tend to do that.

Next show is coming up in the next couple days -- Palladium shenanigans decided against the Arch Enemy/Exodus tour, but if I don't see Cynic in Boston Tursday, then it'll be Suffocation, Shining, and going home before Devildriver Friday -- and if not then, definitely CNV in Haverhill. Good stuff coming.

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