Wednesday, 4 March 2015

Death DTA Tours

March the third 2015 at the Academy in Middle Abbey Street, Dublin will live long in the memory. I booked a ticket for the gig in January and there was a sale on for train tickets so booked those as well. The hotel was actually cheaper for a double room. I booked for two people at €43 because a single room for one adult would have been around €68.
I wasn't familiar with the opening acts. Loudblast opened up proceedings. There wasn't much of a crowd when they started. But as the body count gradually increased the atmosphere improved and people warmed to them. The vocalist was impressive the way he could play lead guitar while growling out death metal lyrics. The other guitarist had some sweet solos as well. I enjoyed them. They got a lively cheer and applause leaving the stage.
Next up were Abysmal Dawn. As with all of the Loudblast stint, I watched most of Abysmal Dawn's set back near the bar beside the mixing desk / sound engineer booth. They exuded power and "oomph!". Impressive drumming, impressive soloing and riffing, impressive backing vocals from the bassist, impressive overall in fact. Towards the end of their set I moved towards the side of the stage and watched the last couple of performances from a closer perspective.
I was in front of the stage closest to the vocalist/guitarist for the majority of the headline act. Steve DiGiorgio, the bass player, did most of the talking between songs. There was fierce moshing and the occasional body crowd surfing. Great atmosphere. I never got to see Death live with Chuck Schuldiner but this was the next best thing. They had a guest vocalist for a few songs in the middle of the set. He also took on Chuck's guitar parts and played Bite The Pain from The Sound of Perseverance album.
They played songs or medleys from every Death album from Scream Bloody Gore to The Sound of Perseverance. I don't remember the exact order but they opened with The Philosopher and finished with Pull The Plug. In between were Zombie Ritual, Baptised in Blood, Leprosy, Left to Die, Spiritual Healing, Within The Mind, Flattening Of Emotions (nice drum intro from Gene Hoglan), Lack Of Comprehension, Suicide Machine, Overactive Imagination, Trapped In A Corner. Most of the songs were from Human and Symbolic albums. Half the lineup (Gene Hoglan and Bobby Koelble on guitar) were involved in recording Symbolic and this year is its twentieth anniversary so it made sense to play so many. They played the title track, Zero Tolerance, Without Judgement and 1,000 Eyes from Symbolic.
The second last song of the night was also from Symbolic. It was the classic Crystal Mountain. I let rip into the mosh pit for that because I thought it'd be the last song. I got a belt in the back of the head on the way into the pit at the start of the song. Such was the intensity that I ran out of steam about three quarters of the way through. So I let myself get pushed towards my original viewing position at the start of Death's set and enjoyed watching Bobby solo through the outro of the song. They took a big bow after Pull the Plug and threw plectrums and drum sticks into the crowd, posed for photos and said goodnight. Steve DiGiorgio signed a guy's Symbolic CD. He was lucky enough to get that.
It was one of the best gigs I was ever at and something I can tick on the bucket list. Chuck's Legacy will outlive his thirtysomething years on earth multiple times I'd say. Death Gig Highlights:

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