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Vader's North American 2020 Tour Stopped In Arizona And Leveled It

Vader’s 2020 North American tour is so laden with death metal, it (insert your favorite witty metaphor here…)!!! But in all seriousness, Vader’s supporting act entourage consisting of Abysmal Dawn, Hideous Divinity and Vitriol, is everything a true fan of underground death metal lover could wish for in a tour package. The second date of this death metal mini festival made a stop in Mesa, Arizona recently and even though it’s early in the year, I’m pretty sure I’ll remember to include this specific show when the time arrives to write up my personal “Best of 2020” end of the year lists.

After the only local supporting band finished its short set, Vitriol, the self-described extreme metal band from Portland, Oregon, was able to get the crowd at Club Red to take notice of them immediately. The dual vocal stylings, along with the chaos that ensued onstage, showcased Vitriol as a gritty no-bullshit death metal quartet. Vitriol made the most of their half-hour allotment and by the end of their set, it was very noticeable change how much of the crowd had relocated closer to the stage.

Hideous Divinity from Italy followed Vitriols flawless set. Their style of technical death metal was a mind jolt that the crowd craved on this night chock full of complimenting death metal sub genres. Hideous Divinity was tight, full of kinetic energy and their vocalist, Enrico “H.” Di Lorenzo, looked like he wanted to tear the head off anything that would cross him while he was in the moment. I had never heard of Hideous Divinity before tonight, but their version of death metal prowess will result in me listening to their recorded discography for sure.

Next up from Los Angeles, California, was Abysmal Dawn. This veteran band with more of a traditional death metal style, has been around since 2003. By the time they took the stage, the venue was really starting to fill up. Abysmal Dawn took advantage of this and played an intense set comprised of material from their four full-length albums released to date. To the crowd’s delight, the band announced that their Season of Mist label debut would be released in April of this year.

The time had finally arrived for Vader’s return to Arizona. It has only been three years since their last visit, but it felt like an eternity. Vader is in a class by itself when it comes to death metal, and tonight, they laid waste to Club Red. Setting the tone with “Silent Empire,” Vader ripped through a setlist that blanketed their 30 plus year existence. The precision that Vader nails each and every note is rarely matched within the metal cosmos. They are masters at their respected instruments and vocalist/guitarist Piotr Wiwczarek is one of the most underrated front men in all of heavy metal. At one point he mentioned about the storms they had to go through to get to Arizona and that they brought that storm onstage with them. The rabid crowd roared at this. When Vader finished their encore, there were diehards screaming for another round.

Will Vader continue to make more albums and tour into their 40 year of existence? I wouldn’t bet against it. Vader shows no signs of slowing down and judging by the quality of supporting bands they take on tour with them, they will continue to tour well into their golden years…

Greekbastard's avatar

Metal isn't just a type of music, it's a lifestyle for Nikos Mixas. In addition to playing guitar for the Phoenix's own Mosara, he's a contributing writer for V13 and The Sludgelord. And when he's taking a break from it all and on vacation, you can almost be certain he's banging his head at a metal festival somewhere interesting.

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