As I explained in my review of last summer's annual extreme metal tour/sweat fest, I've been going to this tour since it's inception in 07' making this my sixth time.
This year I was stoked for three reasons.
1) The two oddball headliners. I love Cannibal Corpse. I love Between The Buried and Me. The bands are NOTHING alike. Having them play back to back is either insane or genius.
2) Cerebral Bore- they cancelled their last US tour stops because of visa issues so I finally wanted to see them live.
3) Exhumed and Goatwhore getting exposure to large crowds. I love these bands but they always get stuck playing small shows and are basically preaching to the choir if you know what I mean. On Summer Slaughter they can play to lots of new young faces and hopefully help their careers.
Well as luck would have it we missed Cerebral Bore. I was crushed. At leeeeeast I was able to talk with the band outside at their merch table (where I bought their album). Cool people. Oh yeah, their singer is a girl. OMG. ha.
Exhumed and Goatwhore played criminally short sets. They performed mostly new songs off their latest albums and seemed to win over the crowd of geeky guitar wank teens with their raw/stripped down old school metal material.
I spent the next hour and a half outside chillin'. I had no desire to see the next three bands and since I'm old I really didn't want to deal with unnecessary noise/standing if I didn't have to.
The Faceless setting up brought me back inside. I used to really dig this band and still enjoy their two albums very much to this day, but something is wrong in Faceless land. They're from Southern California and over the past 7 years, I've seen them about 2.5 million times. I've lost count of all the different lineup's (especially drummers) they've been through. Well this new lineup (new 2nd guitarist, bassist, and vocalist) was pretty sloppy. They were seriously off on this night. The new vocalist is loud and has lots of energy on stage but he pales in comparison to Derek so it bummed me out. Also, the new song they played was kind of "eh," also.
So Between The Buried and Me was next and they basically stole the entire show for me. Now BTBAM has morphed from like a tech metal hardcore band into proggy rock, groove aficionados. It's crazy really. They have insane, EPIC 12 minute songs with never ending time changes that are heavy but damn catchy and have beautiful melodic smooth jazz parts and foot stomping 70's hard rock vibes all over the place. Yeah they were the highlight of my night for sure. They also implored a cool little light show, making me feel like I was at the Main Street Electrical Parade or something. Awesome.
Not all the old school, traditional death metal fans seemed to embrace BTBAM's wackiness with such open arms. For being an insane form of entertainment/expression, metal is wildly conservative in some regards. Anyways, most of the long hairs put up with BTBAM even if they didn't really dig it. So while large portions of the crowd either loved or were "eh" for BTBAM, pretty much EVERYONE was stoked for Cannibal Corpse.
Yes Cannibal Corpse. If ever there was a death metal institution it's them. I don't go to church but as far as I'm concerned, attending a Cannibal Corpse concert is the equivalent to tithing on Sundays, it's just something you have to do if you're into this type of music. It's a no brainer. They also played mostly new material off their last two albums, but strangely enough, for a band now in their 24th year of existence, their new material is damn awesome! They saved the older songs for the end and like usual, the crowd went ape shit. Here's their most famous song, the one Jim Carrey dances to in Ace Ventura:
So I caught 4 of the 5 bands I wanted to see most and they all were killer. Best of all, I didn't get smashed or sweaty at all! Spending so much time outside and then toward the side bar area meant I actually attended a Summer Slaughter without getting slaughtered! ha.
Here's Cannibal Corpse playing another old gem "I Cum Blood." iPhone quality > my old Sony Bloggie digital recorder anyday!