Bands: Fleshgod Apocalypse, Dyscarnate, Bloodshot Dawn, Infernal Creation, Battallions, Downside
Location: The Lamp, Hull
Date: 12th March
This was the second time this year that Italian death metal kings Fleshgod Apocalypse had toured the UK, this time they were headlining (last time, they were the support for The Black Dahlia Murder). There was a small buzz of excitement in The Lamp that matched the small crowd. Opening up the show was Downfall, a band that has proved near enough impossible to find details about. Whilst they put on a good show, they sounded quite bland despite their brutalising use of fierce riffs and cataclysmic vocals.
Shortly after Downfall’s set, came Hull-based sludge metal outfit Battallions. I’d heard a lot of good things about these over the past few weeks, so I had high expectations of them. One thing that truly impressed me about their set was the heaviness of the bass, it just seemed to ring out with more power and volume compared to the guitars, fortunately, the guitars were still audible though. The vocals were nothing short of vicious and blood thirsty, oddly blending with the almost doom metalesqe tempo of the music. I think it’s safe to say that they passed my expectations.
Aside from Fleshgod, one of the bands I was impatiently awaiting was none other that Yorkshire’s premier black metal quartet Infernal Creation. They opened up their set with an overwhelming performance of War Is Worship. Despite frontman Neiph’s ailing health on the night, he still executed his vocal duties like a well-placed axe during in a decapitation. Infernal Creation’s performance was extremely charismatic, allowing for their music to sound more menacing and wild. And as they had announced on their Facebook page, they were debuting a new song, entitled The Mother Of Fire, which for me was the pinnacle of their performance. The intro reminded of Megadeth’s Washington In Next whilst the vocals seemed to possess a My Dying Bride flavour to the sound. The song, itself, is unique in the way that it blends a certain mystifying atmosphere with a force of unrelenting brutality.
When Bloodshot Dawn took the stage, I had already missed some of their set due to having to nip to the takeaway. What I heard of their set was impressive, from the snarling and powerful vocals to the flawlessly performed riffs. The band had to cut their set short which was disappointing but thy at least played Godless, one of my favourite tracks from their new album, before finishing up was becoming an enchanting performance of sheer metal domination. The main support of the night came in the form of the metal trio Dyscarnate. Their shredding riffs and overall monstrous sound brought them a very positive crowd response. Their set was certainly one of the most lively ones of the night. Cain and Abel was my favourite part of the set.
And finally, the highlight of the night and the reason that a lot of the crowd were gathered at The Lamp: Fleshgod Apocalypse. As they opened up their set, the strong classical sound that dominates their music echoed throughout the venue. On thing I noticed straight away was the weakness of the sound, the fault lied with the sound engineer that was touring with them. Despite the weaker-than-usual sound, Fleshgod still performed well and created the hypnotic atmosphere that comes hand-in-hand with their music. The clean vocals were stop on as were the growls. The guitars just seemed to roar through the speakers, the riffs perfectly executed, as were the keyboard and rhythm sections. The Violation certainly went down with the crowd, creating the biggest response of the night though the performance of that song paled in comparison to the performance of The Imposition.
Overall, the show felt a little rushed, especially with Bloodshot having to cut their set short and the job the sound guy did for Fleshgod was disappointing but it was an enjoyable show, to say the least. The supporting acts (mainly Infernal, Battallions and Bloodshot) were just as impressive as Fleshgod. I’m hoping that Fleshgod Apocalypse make another UK appearance later in the year and I’m definitely looking forward to seeing the aforementioned support acts again.
Photography by David Ferret Taylor.