Vader Builds An "Empire" In London With Hate Eternal And Threat Signal
Band Photo: Hate Eternal (?)
Death metal is perhaps the most expansive of metal's many sub-genres. It ranges from the extremely brutal to the hauntingly melodic and often displays amazing technical ability from the musicians involved. A night full of death metal may seem a bit much for some people, but for devoted death heads, it might seem like paradise. So it was that when Vader embarked on their first headlining tour in support of their new album, "The Empire," they brought no less than four bands with them, all of which performing death metal in one form or another.
Having not seen enough of the first two bands to really comment, it's fair to start the review by discussing Canadian quintet, Threat Signal. Unfortunately, not being familiar with the group or able to find a setlist, I can't name any of the songs they performed, but every single one of them was played with a sincere energy. The group carry themselves very well, unafraid and confident about supporting two death metal legends but respectful enough not to be cocky about their clear talents. The crowd were visibly impressed too, with newcomers and doubters being won over just as much as their fans enjoyed their set. While not everyone enjoys the studio output from Threat Signal, they're a sight to behold live and a band which must be watched at least once.
Up next was Florida founded death metal titans Hate Eternal. Again, I'm not too familiar with their catalogue, but what can be said is that the trio are one of the most brutal bands in death metal and that shines through on the stage just as well as it does on their albums. Fronted by Erik Rutan, a beast of a man onstage who's also made a name for himself as a producer over the years, the group have become a favourite among those who like their death metal as extreme as possible, in the same vein as the likes of Suffocation. Their live performance was an unrelenting sonic assault which pounded every note into the audience's skulls from the very beginning to the very end, much to the delight of those who live for the extreme.
Finally this evening, it was the turn of Vader, the Polish death metal legends, to take to the stage. Supporting their new album, "The Empire," the group performed a healthy selection of songs from the record, including, "Angels of Steel," "Prayer to the God of War" and "Iron Reign" among other selections. Vader has a well earned reputation for the intensity of their live performances, which are accentuated by their use of lighting and silhouettes, in addition of course to their superb musicianship, with drummer James Stewart shining through particularly.
Naturally, plenty of old classics were brought out too, including, "Silent Empire" and "Sothis" from the "De Profundis" album, as well as the likes of "Wings," "Triumph of Death" and "Dark Age," before finishing with "Black to the Blind" and "This is the War." On a night full of death metal, there was something for lovers of all different kinds of the genre and nobody would have gone home disappointed.
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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