Lets start with saying that you would think that the folks running the Summit would have figured out how to get people in the door in a timely fashion by now. One guy at the door and one line for 1000 thrash hungry maniacs is poor planning. The last time I was there I stood in line waiting to get in for the duration of the first two bands and just made inside in the nick of time to see ANTHRAX (last time I was there was also for the Notmen a year ago almost to the day!). So here we are, cold and having to piss like a Russian race horse and the DEATH ANGEL dudes walked right passed us to go start their set while we were still a couple of hundred people back!
Finally we got inside, but dude!... I had to throw a piss like nobody's business and had to ignore the bitchen' metal coming from the stage so I could let some pressure off my bladder. I had to go so bad I'm pretty sure I did some permanent damage that I will be paying for in about 20 years. Damn, I was in the bathroom a long time and missed some DEATH ANGEL but when I finally made it out of the piss hall I was able to find a nice little place right near the front to catch the rest of the ultra violent one's set and even the rest of the show.
I saw DEATH ANGEL at the 'Thrash of the Titans' in San Francisco about 10 years ago and even thought they were up there with the greats, even a Baloff fronted EXODUS they stole the fucking show! I am sure they could have last night as well if they had been given full volume, full lights and the smoke machine too because they were by far the most energetic of the nights thrash titans taking an almost punk rock energy to the stage. From what I caught of their set they played a good blend of old and new DEATH ANGEL. Unlike many of the thrash greats of yesteryear the albums that DEATH ANGEL has put out over the last several years are killer! They have produced some high quality, interesting thrash metal while their peers have mostly flailed around in the world of mediocrity (the other exceptions to this might be TESTAMENT and OVERKILL). DEATH ANGEL raged, they are from San Francisco and play Thrash Metal.
TESTAMENT brought their fuckin' A game to this show! They were a full-on powerhouse of sonic brutality and flying hair! Chuck Billy's light up mini mic stand was cool and he is the ripper on air guitar! These guys were fun to watch, especially Alex Skolnick. His guitar playing and he was by far the most gifted musician on that stage, he was nothing shy of amazing. With 3/5ths of their original line-up they had the polish of well seasoned pros and delivered a "best of" set covering all eras of the band. Damn they were good!
Finally the masters of mosh hit the stage ready to rock! ANTHRAX was good and I was a huge fan in the 80's, there was a time when they were my favorite band. I caught them once "back in the day" and they were awesome. I was not a fan of the Bush years and was ecstatic when Belladonna returned to the fold. Seeing them last year was over the top fucking rad but last night something was just a little off. They suffered a few sound problems but really the biggest issue was playing too much of their new album. I thought the album was ok (see review here) but the thing is that people are not as familiar with that album as they obviously are the classics. You could feel the energy level in the room dip every time they tried to force feed the crowd one of their new songs, it was too much too soon. I found it strange that they didn't notice this themselves after a few shows into the tour. At least they weren't giving us the IRON MAIDEN punishment by only playing the new material. But, every time they tore into a classic the place went completely ape-shit. Another odd decision was to leave out 'Among the Living'...They kicked ass but didn't really get their foot across both cheeks. There was certainly more ass that could have been kicked.
The night belonged to TESTAMENT and I think they knew that too! \m/
Check out the gallery and vids below.
Anthrax – Extreme Footage! This was hectic to film!