After two days of straight-up metal and hardcore we woke up to the last day of this year’s Maryland Deathfest.
Jason,Herb,Matt and I headed to Panera Bread for lunch. After everyone made jokes out of the fact that the name sounds like Pantera, we went over to Edison Lot.
Author’s Note: Due to the schedule no longer being up and not remembering what order they played, the bands for the day are surmised according to memory and not time.
First on were black/death band Denouncement Pyre. I decided to give them a look since they are an offshoot of Nocturnal Graves. The band was pretty decent in both sound and performance.
Shed The Skin
Next on was death metal band Shed the Skin. As soon as I saw Kyle Severn from Incantation and his mustache playing the drums I knew this was going to be good. Thankfully I was right.
Blackened thrash masters Nocturnal Graves were one of the must-see bands of the day for me and they did not disappoint.
Classic Swedish death metallers Wombshedbath were anther one of the bands I wanted to catch the most on Sunday. While their sound was lacking, they were still fun to see.
These German black thrashers put on a very fun and energetic performance (although they didn’t top Nocturnal Graves).
While I do enjoy stoner doom, I always found Bongzilla to be one of the more boring and generic bands of that genre. Live they were no different as I sat in the shade bored.
As a big fan of Swedish death metal, I always found this band to be a more generic entry and similar to Bongzilla, their live performance didn’t do them any favors.
Being one of my favorite death metal bands, seeing Incantation is always a charm. The last time I was able to catch them was at MDF 2014 and they were one of the best performances of that year. While I feel they sounded better then due to playing at the Rams Head, they still killed like always.
Along with Venom, they were one of my top must-see bands of Sunday (and the whole fest!) and they ended up being the best band of the whole Edison Lot. They sounded great and played all of their classics. It was raining a lot on Sunday but this didn’t stop the crowd from circle pitting as hard as they could.
The second to last band on the bill was the New Wave of British Heavy Metal band Satan. While traditional metal was never something I was big on (outside of the main bands and a few other exceptions), I can appreciate it when it’s good – and Satan were really good. They had a great sound, great energy and their songs were pretty catchy and memorable.
The last band of the Edison Lot was a band I was really interested in seeing. Earlier this year, I saw the offshoot Venom Inc. and they had an amazing set. Now it was time to see how Cronos’ band measures up to that version of the band.
While Venom didn’t have as good as a set list as Venom Inc. (Venom’s set kinda had too many later songs), they did play classics like “Buried Alive” and “Warhead.” These staples sounded amazing thanks to Cronos’ vocals. This made both Venom and Venom Inc. experiences pretty even. After Venom finished with “Black Metal” (of course), Herb and I headed down to Sound Stage. After chilling with his friend Greg, I made it in time for the last band.
I had seen crust punk legends Doom back at MDF 2011. It was about time I’d hear them play a longer set. Just as 2011, they ruled and were a nice end to the fest.
After Doom’s set Jason and I headed back to the hotel (while Herb watched Mystifer). We all went to sleep and already wondered what next year will hold.
Venom offshoot Venom Inc. and death metal pioneers Necrophagia played New York City’s Webster Hall Jan. 9 as part of their first US circuit.
For the uninitiated, Venom Inc. is a new band that features ex-Venom members Mantas on guitar, Abaddon on drums and Demolition Man on vocals – making this band an unofficial reunion of Venom’s 1988 to 1992 lineup.
I was really excited for this as I had not been to a show since King Diamond and Necrophagia and Venom were bands I’ve wanted to see since high school. I was also confirmed for an interview with Necrophagia vocalist Killjoy. Although I took the bus to the city with my friend Jay to NYC, we split up as Jay didn’t want to be at the venue too early. I took the Subway to Union Square while Jay went to The Blue Ruin in Hell’s Kitchen. I got to the venue on East 11th street, ran into some friends and awaited the show.
First up was Long Island’s Extinction A. D. The band played slightly melodic “tough guy” hardcore. This was not a style I was ever into, so their set bored me.Most of the crowd was bored as well as this band didn’t fit the bill.
After Exinction A. D. I interviewed Killjoy. Metalfier got on stage shortly after. The band was a traditional metal throwback and they were bad. Like the last band, everyone was bored and couldn’t wait for them to finish.
After the bland local openers it was time for Necrophagia, which was also when Jay showed up. Their set was mostly focused on recent material, as no songs before 1998 were played. Necrophagia performed several fan favorites such as “Embalmed Yet I Breathe” and “Blood Freak” – all while vocalist Killjoy practiced his horror theatrics. They ended their set with their most well known song “Cannibal Holocaust” (based on the horror classic of the same name).
After Necrophagia’s killer performance, we got ready for Venom Inc. Audiences were curious due to the fact that while this version of Venom does not include classic vocalist Cronos, they do have two of the original three members.
The band started their set with “Prime Evil,” the title track from the 1988 Venom album. This was the only song they played from the era they were a throwback to. From that point on, their setlist mostly consisted of songs from the first two Venom albums, “Welcome to Hell” and “Black Metal.” This included many classics such as “Black Metal,” “1,000 Days in Sodom,” “Countess Bathory,” “Don’t Burn the Witch” and “Schizo.” They also played some of the non-album singles from that era such as “Warhead” and “Bloodlust.”
Venom Inc. had good energy and looked like they were having a lot of fun. With the exception of the two openers, the show was a lot better then expected. After the show Jay and I went to the Blue Ruin, met some cool, hot chicks and took the bus home disappointed that we had to return to reality.