May 14, 2017

Testament and Sepultura Broke my Neck in Vancouver!


Testament and Sepultura Broke my Neck in Vancouver!
written by Emilio Angel

I arrived at the Commodore as Prong was just starting. The New York-based cross-over Thrash band put on a great 40 minute set; they played themes of Groove metal and Industrial metal, combined with the hard-hitting Thrash you would expect at a Testament and Sepultura show. Songs spanning their entire discography (which inspired me to jam to some of their tunes when I got home later that night). Definitely a band to check out!

Now, I saw Sepultura back in 2016 when they closed a festival called Rock Al Parque (in Bogota, Colombia). It was a very lackluster show partly due to a mediocre sound system – the show was a disappointment so I didn’t know what to expect here in Vancouver. After seeing these guys again, the show improved 10 fold. It was a short show tonight, but Andreas Kisser and Derrick Green put on a great performance and the crowd reacted with mosh-pits in the center of the venue. The bulk of Sepultura’s show were songs from their new album Machine Messiah, although they did close with ‘Inner Self’, “Refuse/Resist” and “Roots Bloody Roots”. I would have liked to have heard “Ratamahatta” and something of their older album Schizophrenia but it was a solid 45 minutes, and by the end of the show I was satisfied with Sepultura.

Testament is a band with some of the best musicians in metal. These guys are one of the godfathers of Thrash Metal and have kept true to their roots since they started out. Their new album Brotherhood of the Snake is an amazing thrash metal record. The show started off with “Brotherhood of the Snake” which fired the audience up immediately.  As Chuck Billy’s omnipotent voice dominated The Commodore, the mosh pit at the centre of the venue grew quickly, and people were throwing themselves at it from all over the venue. The first couple of songs were all new songs from Brotherhood of the Snake, then into tunes from Dark Root of Earth. Guitarist Alex Skolnick performed a 4-minute solo much to the raving of the crowd.

After the solo there seemed to be a bit of confusion of which song they would play next, but Chuck Billy said they wanted to “stick to what they know best”, so they performed “Electric Crown” of their Ritual album and a variety of songs from all their albums: “Throne of Thorns”, “Urotsukidoji”, “Eyes of Wrath” and many other greats from Testament’s best 1980’s classics Souls of Black and The New Order.  Each band member was given time for a stunning solo;  each solo better than the last. My favorite was the bass solo by Steve Di Giorgio but the band musicianship, and professionalism with their instruments shone through with each solo.

By this time I was exhausted from moshing and being thrown around in the crowd, people were having a lot of fun, the sound from Testament was 100% this was a show you shouldn’t have missed.

After almost 2 hours of playing an amazing show, I went home with neck pains from all the head banging (aka bangover). I was sincerely impressed by how well Alex Skolnick and Eric Peterson played guitar and how the entire band performed after an incredible 35 year career in Metal.

Solid 4.5/5

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written by Emilio Angel



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