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Morbid Angel/ Suffocation/ Satyricon Live in Seattle

By Chris Slack, Contributor
Monday, May 17, 2004 @ 11:04 AM

Morbid Angel, Suffocation and

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Yeehaw, a death metal show that I could really look forward to and also not have to work the next day so I could do some drinking before the show! Unfortunately for the metal elite who always show up late, Premonition of War cancelled so Satyricon started playing at 8 PM instead. As a result a number of people who were going exclusively for the purpose of seeing them totally missed out. Fortunately I was not one of them, I showed up nice and early and wormed my way inside well before the venue opened so I was able to secure a nice spot on the stage.

At 8 PM sharp Norway’s Satyricon took the stage to play “With Ravenous Hunger” from their latest album Volcano. I was quite surprised at the very positive audience reaction as I rarely hear Satyricon brought up by the metal press or fans in conversation. The group played quite well together, just as tight as on the albums despite the fact that Trym (Zyklon, ex-Emperor, ex-Enslaved) was playing drums for them on the tour because Frost couldn’t get into the US. I was somewhat surprised by the lack of Metal Fog during their set as I thought it was required that all Norwegian black metal bands have a thick cloud at all times. Their set list wasn’t too bad, but I was somewhat disappointed in the lack of ANYTHING from Dark Medieval Times or The Shadowthrone, my personal favorites from their discography. Everything that they played (with the exception of “Mother North”) was from Volcano and Rebel Extravaganza. My personal highlight was the bit of Venom’s “Black Metal” that they played before going into “Fuel for Hatred.” Overall it was a decent set, I would have been a lot happier if they had played some older stuff though.

Satyricon photos - http://www.shadows.com/gravemusic/live/ma-suff-sat042904/satyricon.shtml.

As soon as Satyricon left the crowd started to thicken considerably as Suffocation was to play their first ever (as far as I know) show in Seattle. Their presence in the lineup was responsible for bringing out a lot of old-school death metal fans that usually do not attend shows, something that only a band of legendary stature can accomplish. I have very little to say about their set except for the fact that they completely kicked ass! The sound was crunchy and clean, with a low end that did a good job of rattling my internal organs. The reaction from the audience was nothing short of incredible: the metalheads in Seattle are definitely behind the New York boys 100 percent. Despite my somewhat limited knowledge of the bands music they seemed tight as all get out, only making one noticeable mistake, which they blamed on Terrence smoking too much weed before the show. They made up for it by going back and playing the last part of the song again, this time the way it was supposed to be played. After a much too short set they promised to be back again in September, I know I’ll be there and if you are reading this you’d better be too!

Suffocation photos - http://www.shadows.com/gravemusic/live/ma-suff-sat042904/suffocation.shtml.

Suffocation kicked so much ass it would be difficult for anyone to play next, however Florida death metal legends Morbid Angel were next in line and would surely give it their best. Or would they? When they came on stage and opened up with “Day of Suffering,” I thought that we were surely in for a great show from the Lava gang, however something just seemed to be missing. Pete Sandoval’s drums were as brutal and precisely triggered as one would expect from the master death metal skinsman, Trey’s flailing solos were as awesome as usual but the other members of the band dragged down the level of the performance. The touring guitarist (sorry, I have no idea who he is) either learned the songs in a hurry and not so well or he was just having trouble keeping up with the rest of the band. Steve Tucker’s bass lines sounded decent but his vocals lacked the intensity of previous performances. Like Satyricon, they concentrated mainly on songs from their last two albums, ignoring many of the songs that made them what they are today. This left a lot of the old-school Morbid Angel fans I spoke with quite disappointed, however the younger folks in the audience seemed to love every minute of their set. Perhaps this is due to never seeing the band before or only knowing the most recent material, who knows. To sum things up, a live Morbid Angel initiate would have probably really enjoyed the show, however out of the seven times I have seen them play live I have to say that this was the weakest performance yet. My suggestion to the Trey and Pete would be to do whatever they have to do to get Erik Rutan and Jared Anderson back into the live fold, the band was much stronger in the live area during that time period.

Morbid Angel photos – http://www.shadows.com/gravemusic/live/ma-suff-sat042904/index.shtml.

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Satryicon set list:
With Ravenous Hunger
Repined Bastard Nation
Fuel for Hatred
Mother North

Suffocation set list (maybe):
Infecting the Crypts
Surgery of Impalement
Thrones of Blood
To Weep Once More
Effigy of the Forgotten
Suspended in Tribulation
Souls to Deny
Breeding the Spawn
Leige of Inveracity

Morbid Angel set list (not necessarily in order):
Day of Suffering
Within Thy Enemy
Pain Divine
Beneath The Hollow
Curse the Flesh
Stricken Arise/Where the Slime Live
Dawn of the Angry
Bil Ur-Sag
World of Shit (The Promised Land)
Cleansed In Pestilence (Blade of Elohim)
Lord of All Fevers and Plague
God of Emptiness
Enshrined By Grace
Chapel of Ghouls

(Photos by Chris Slack)

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