So I just got back from the drive, which was incredibly brutal. Basically only made two stops, so 4 hour driving shifts really drain it out of you. Anyway, let's recap the day!
Didn't really expect much from them, because I wasn't very familiar with them at all. However, the Singaporean trio did a really great job. Arif was absolutely incredible for the entire set. They probably had the biggest crowd of the early bands because they were the first band to go on, so a whole bunch of people got to see them tear the place up. They were an excellent start to the day, and got the generally thrash kid audience warmed up.
Wormrot ended really early for some reason, so I made my way to the second tent to see whoever was playing there. Turns out it was two piece blackened doom drone something band, Dark Castle. They ruled. That simple. They reminded me a lot of Black Cobra, who also were a two piece playing the fest. They weren't similar in sound at all, but their stage presence was identical. Stevie Floyd has a sort of bark that just chills the soul. I recognized their name from somewhere, but wasn't sure where. I just checked, and they're on Profound Lore. I don't think that label can have a band that doesn't fucking rule on it.
I wandered a bit, checking out some other bands. I think I saw a bit of Bonded by Blood between Dark Castle and the next band I saw in full, Woe. I was really impressed with them, but I think they have a lot of adapting to do for a live setting. Chris kept forgetting the mic needs to be in front of him in order for his vocals to be amplified. He did get really into the music a few times, but I think that Woe had already lost the audience at that point. I thought they were a barrel of fun though, and totally would go see them again.
I zoomed right over to the Glass House, which wasn't an impressive venue, if you ask me. However, Atheist were fantastic. Kelly gives off a sort of bro-crossed-with-Bret-Michaels vibe, which sort of bothered me, but I really liked their set. They did a great job of mixing in a few Jupiter tunes with an appropriate amount of older songs. I was really disappointed that we didn't get Mother Man. I was really looking forward to that. I hope they tour under Jupiter a lot more, because I'd want to see a full set from these guys.
I ate at Grill Em All after Atheist. I got the Samoa Joe, and it fucking ruled. I wish I was more adventurous and got the Behemoth, but I wasn't that hungry.
So. Here I am. Seeing Agalloch. Again. I wasn't sure if I wanted to go see them, I mean, how many times could you see this hipster piece of shit band before you get bored? The answer is never. They still rule live, and were just as good before if not better. With that said, there were a few slip ups. John didn't sound so good at the beginning of the set, but he got it worked out by the end. Sounded like he had a bad cold or something. There was a glaring omission of Limbs, but I liked seeing Falling Snow. I'm really happy I chose to see them again.
Into the Painted Grey
Not Unlike the Waves
That other set didn't have Not Unlike the Waves. I'm certain they played it.
Finally does not do justice. I was so ready to see these guys. Perhaps it was the ideal of seeing one of the bands that got me into metal, but I wasn't as happy as I thought I'd be. I mean, they were excellent and Mark sounded great, but I expected to be hit harder. I really liked them ending with Thrown to the Wolves and Thrashers was fucking awesome. I still need to see Kill As One, and I would have liked Dethroned also. Still, I'm very happy I crossed these guys off the bucket list, and will not allow any acts of God to stop me from seeing them in my home town again.
I went and saw the last ten minutes of Obituary and the first ten of Morbid Angel. Morbid Angel were so good. I mean, it was hard for me to walk out of there. But, there was a certain band from Birmingham that I just had to go watch.
Insane. Absolutely unreal. I haven't ever seen a set quite like it. They found a way to make the compelling aspects of a grind show, a genre that I'm not too fond of, combine with the musical aspects of a black metal show, a genre I absolutely love. Dave is an absolute animal on stage, and put on a vocal performance that will never be beaten in my eyes. Their sound was absolutely stellar, and they found the proper mix to get that layered vocal sound that makes the Anaal Nathrakh listening experience so unique. Really, I may never see an extreme metal band be this good live ever again.
Dark Castle: 8/10
Grill Em All: 10/10
Death Angel: 8.5/10
Anaal Nathrakh: 10/10
Now, I have a grievance to air. There is a huge difference between the scene in San Francisco and the LA area. It may be me not being used to the LA "thrasher" crowd, being a pussy or something but I was appalled at the behavior from some of the people. Not being helped up in the pit. Random fights. Rudeness to the security guards. I've always fought for metal concerts being a lot more centered around brotherhood than violence, but I wouldn't have been able to say that about yesterday. It was hard for me to truly believe that I belonged there.
Last edited by idrinkwine732; 03-06-2011 at 06:03 PM.