Out of the popular metal record labels, Metal Blade is one of my least favorites, however I was very much looking forward to this show. The reason for this was Cattle Decapitation. I was excited to see them again, and this time it would be special. For the first and possibly the only time, they would be playing their critically acclaimed new album, Monolith of Inhumanity
, in its entirety. Needless to say, I was not going to miss this opportunity.
In the 100+ degree heat, Chris and I waited in line at the Glass House. The RSVP list for this show was full, so we showed up before the doors opened to ensure we would get in. At one o'clock we shuffled inside and went straight to the Scion table. Unfortunately I didn't get there quickly enough and they were already out of the Magrudergrind records. After grabbing what was left we met up with Robert and Pablo. We didn't really have anything to do, since none of us cared to see the first band, Pilgrim. It was much cooler in the venue than it was outside though, so we watched them. I didn't think they were anything special, but it seemed like the crowd enjoyed them.
After they finished I went outside to get some water that I left in my truck. It was already on fire and not refreshing in the least bit, but it was better than nothing. I went back inside again, but didn't watch any of Gypsyhawk. I continued sitting in the lobby as Battlecross started their set. Travis was at the Cattle Decapitation merch table so I went over and talked to him a bit. He confirmed that the Dying Fetus tour will be coming to Southern California, so I'm already looking forward to that. I also asked him if they were going to do a headlining tour next year and he replied "I really hope not. I hate playing last." I'm sure Metal Blade will make them do one at some point though.
I bought the Cattle Decapitation split EP with Caninus and after putting it in my truck I went back inside and watched the rest of Battlecross. The few songs I saw were nothing particularly interesting. They come off as a second rate version of As I Lay Dying, except without any clean vocals. On record they're actually not bad, but live they annoy me to no end. Their vocalist tries way too hard to be the ultimate frontman, saying every possible gimmicky line in the book. Please, just shut up and play your music. The crowd was really into them though and they got some pits going.
Once they were finished it was finally time for Cattle Decapitation. I was excited for what was to come. They took a little longer to set up, but soon enough the sample to "The Carbon Stampede" began to play. They busted into the crushing intro riff and Travis spewed out the long opening gurgle. There was just the right amount of delay on the vocals, making him sound monstrous. They continued on with the songs in the order of the album, with "Dead Set On Suicide" being next, followed by "A Living, Breathing Piece of Defecating Meat." Something was a little bit off though. David was struggling with the fast double bass sections, sometimes fluttering all over the place. I believe the problem was that he was not using his own pedals, because every band was playing on the same drum kit. Aside from that, everything else sounded great.
The crowd reception was good, but not what I expected it to be. Unfortunately the pit was rather weak, even for the parts you would expect it to really go off. So, instead of pitting I spent most of the time headbanging and being in awe of what I was witnessing. The major highlight for me was hearing my favorite song from the album, "Do Not Resuscitate," which they did not play on the Origin tour in the spring. I really liked the way they went about playing the set. Aside from Josh having to change the tuning on his guitar the band took very little time in between songs and Travis did not say a single word to the crowd. This made it feel more cohesive, as everything flowed together instead of being broken up by useless dialogues and down time. After "Your Disposal" the interlude, "The Monolith," began to play and the band walked off stage. Then Travis returned and actually did the vocals to it, which I wasn't expecting. The rest of the members reappeared and they finished off the set with the outstanding closer, "Kingdom of Tyrants." Afterward Travis finally spoke to the crowd, saying thank you for coming out. It was an experience for sure, and I can't express how happy I was to be able to attend this show, let alone free of charge.
- The Carbon Stampede
- Dead Set On Suicide
- A Living, Breathing Piece of Defecating Meat
- Forced Gender Reassignment
- Gristle Licker
- Projectile Ovulation
- Do Not Resuscitate
- Your Disposal
- The Monolith
- Kingdom of Tyrants
Originally I was planning on leaving after Cattle Decapitation, but I ended up staying for Six Feet Under, because I was going to see Xibalba play next door afterward and I had nothing better to do in between. Chris and I watched from the side, expecting the worst. After a theatrical intro they went into "Stripped, Raped and Strangled," which got the crowd going. Then came the vocals. Chris Barnes's low growls have deteriorated beyond belief since his days in Cannibal Corpse, but that wasn't even the worst part. Not long into the first song he let out some horrendous screeches, causing Chris and I to start cracking up. Surprisingly they had the biggest crowd and the best response though. I'm not sure what people see in them. Even with the vocals aside, there are much better death metal bands out there. They played for close to an hour and finished their set with "Hammer Smashed Face," thus ending another fun Scion event. I am already looking forward to attending the next one!