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Kataklysm Lead A Death Metal War With Septicflesh And Aborted In London

Photo of Kataklysm

Band Photo: Kataklysm (?)

Perhaps one of the most popular venues among metal fans and bands in Britain, is The Underworld in Camden, North London. It's practically a given that when a small or cult band tours the UK, this is where they will play, even if it's their only UK show. As a result, even the pub located above the venue, appropriately enough called The World's End, is a very metal place, complete with it's own merchandise and all kinds of rock and metal being played over the stereo, as well as fantastic staff. The place is worth visiting for this alone, but on this night, The Underworld was hosting a death metal extravaganza which simply could not be missed, as Kataklysm arrived with Septicflesh and Aborted to perform the penultimate show of a 44 date tour.

The evening got off to an extremely heavy start as Waregem's own, Aborted took to the stage. It says a lot about this tour that all three bands are headliners in their own rights, each with a rich history and a lengthy back catalogue and Aborted certainly have the presence to be deemed headliners. All three bands brought a different brand of death metal to the show and this evening's openers were representing the brutal side of music, and representing it well. Despite going on at 6:45, Aborted instantly got the crowd moving, with plenty of head banging and mosh pits (a dangerous thing in The Underworld given the pillars on the floor,) to go around. The band mixed old material with new, performing songs from their excellent new EP, "Termination Redux," which are also scheduled to appear on their forthcoming new album, "Retrogore." This is all held together by frontman Sven de Caluwé, who possesses the charisma and showmanship that it takes to be considered one of the best live vocalists in death metal. Aborted puts on the kind of death metal performance people want to see, intense, extreme and very fun.

Up next, we had a touch of class, as Greek veterans Septicflesh brought their wonderful mesh of death metal and symphonic music to London. Though some fans will no doubt be disappointed to hear that they focus mostly on the albums they've released since returning in 2007, they needn't worry about the quality of their live show, as Septicflesh are still a sight to behold. Opening with "War in Heaven" from their most recent album, "Titan," the band captivated the audience with their elegant take on the extreme, which boasts class without pompousness.

Frontman Spiros "Seth" Antoniou is another of extreme metal's best frontmen, standing tall, proud and loud and constantly encouraging the audience and making them feel involved in the show, with the band as a whole displaying a united front that fully believes in themselves and their music. Plenty of fan favourites from the new albums were brought out tonight including "Vampire of Nazareth," "Prototype" and "Anubis," the last of which was even able to get the audience to sing along to the melody (a hard thing to do in London, believe me.) Septicflesh then bowed out with the song, "Prometheus," again from the "Titan" album and a promise that they will return with a new album. Septicflesh are one of the most unique bands in death metal and their live shows are definitely a must see.

Finally, the crowd were ready to enjoy tonight's headliners, Kataklysm, who are on the road in support of their latest album, "Of Ghosts And Gods." The album was promoted well with several songs being aired tonight, including the opening number, "Breaching the Asylum," as well as "The Black Sheep" and "Thy Serpent's Tongue." Kataklysm also have a solid aura to them, with frontman Maurizio Iacono being quite reminiscent of Testament vocalist, Chuck Billy in terms of live performance.

Though fans of their earliest albums may not be pleased to hear that little from these releases was performed live, they still, much like Septicflesh, put on a great show, filled with intensity. The band are clearly proud of their most recent records though, as evidenced by the encore consisting of the 2012 single, "The Iron Will" and "Elevate," from their 2013 album, "Waiting For The End To Come." Though my personal pick of the night goes to Septicflesh, all three bands put a tremendous effort into the show, which is all the more respectable after going through such a gruelling tour. A great night was had by all!

Diamond Oz's avatar

Ollie Hynes has been a writer for Metal Underground.com for four years and has been a metal fan for ten years, going so far as to travel abroad for metal shows.

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