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Saturday, February 12, 2011

Death Angel -- Lawrence, KS -- February 11th, 2011

I'm feeling it. Going all out two nights in a row is putting a strain on my body, but it feels pretty effin' good. For their first show in Kansas City since 1987, Death Angel ripped the rowdy Friday night crowd in half. It was a good night for metal.

A country show at a nearby venue caused me to park further away than normal, thus only catching the last 1 1/2 songs from KC's own power-metal titans Vanlade. I walked in on what sounded like a new song, and it sounded really awesome. The last one they played (it seemed they got their set cut short) was Breakin' The Law by Judas Priest, but they definitely put a thrash spin on the song. Best time I've ever seen them play it! I'll hold off on giving them a numbered review this time since I barely saw any of them, but I already can't wait to see 'em again!

Next up was At The Left Hand of God (or: drunkenly screaming ATLHOOOGGG!!!) and they were the odd-man out on this bill but brought a refreshing breath of air to the crowd. I'm always a big fan of these guys live and they never disappoint. The lead singer has ditched the keyboard and it seems like they play melodic death metal/metalcore in the vein on As I Lay Dying...but better! Great stuff, though the crowd wasn't too much into them. A more appropriate show for them, and they'd get tons of applause! Always a pleasure with ATLHOG.

And then came the best thrash band from the Midwest, Hammerlord. They were definitely on top of their game tonight, and they (for lack of a better word) absolutely thrashed through their opening set. Demon Fever was particularly vicious. Amazing as always. Oh, and still some of the best guitar playing I've ever seen in a live setting.

Bonded By Blood was the first of the touring bands. They were a little bit better than the last time I saw them, opening for Early Man. They seemed like they were kind of sloppy last year, but they were a lot tighter this time around. I love new thrash, but Bonded by Blood has yet to win me over. They're getting there, though.

Lazarus A.D., on the other hand, was pretty much the only band I wouldn't pay to see again. They had some pretty fun thrash parts, so it wasn't all a loss. But they definitely sounded way too much like Pantera for my liking. The crowd seemed to like them, though.

And then came Death Angel. They were outstanding. And they told us time and time again that we were by far the best crowd on the tour so far. People were spazzing out the entire time, everyone was singing along, not only to classics like Seemingly Endless Time, but also new ones like Claws In You. It was absolute chaos and absolutely insane. And let me tell you, Thrashers is probably the best live thrash song I've ever heard. Absolutely INSANE! I can't say it enough! Death Angel, please don't wait 24 years to come back again!

Death Angel (same as Chicago)

01. I Chose The Sky
02. Evil Priest
03. Buried Alive
04. Mistress Of Pain
05. Claws In So Deep
06. Seemingly Endless Time
07. This Hate
08. Relentless Revolution
(Acoustic outro from Claws In So Deep played over the P.A.)
09. Truce
10. Purgatory (Iron Maiden cover, no vocals) /
11. Veil Of Deception
12. Opponents At Sides
13. Bored /
14. Heaven And Hell (Black Sabbath cover)
15. Thrashers

16. Lord Of Hate
17. River Of Rapture
18. The Ultra Violence (Intro) / Thrown To The Wolves

LaZarus A.D. included:

The Onslaught Pt. 1 - Revolution
American Dreams
The Ultimate Sacrifice

Bonded By Blood included:

Immortal Life
Feed The Beast
Prototype: Death Machine


Wolves At War's End
Creating Destruction
Demon Fever
The Ballad Of Rusty Tomaski
Tombstone Piledriver

At The Left Hand of God included:

The Tower Is Tall But The Fall Is Short

Vanlade included:

Breaking The Law (Judas Priest cover)

Death Angel: 9/10
Lazarus A.D.: 6/10
Bonded By Blood: 7/10
Hammerlord: 8.5/10
At The Left Hand Of God: 8/10
Vanlade: n/a

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