Oh, the death metal show. It's been far too long since my last excursion into the extreme metal underworld. Back in the day, I'd spend all my extra cash on tickets, merchandise and gas for concerts, attending two or three a month. Ah to be a carefree youth again. Now I'm older, and poorer, and have different priorities in life...I can't believe it but this was my first metal show of the year and it's mid April!
Enter, Suffocation. The big dogs. After several hours of blast beats, booze, mosh pits and a surprising number of hot girls, New York's finest export took the stage and it was as if none of that other crap had transpired. Instant Men In Black mind wipe. They opened with "Thrones of Blood" off Pierced From Within and I was home again. Standing along the right side of the stage, watching these death metal veterans bashing out old favorites and new songs alike, the audience screaming (and pitting, and stage diving, and...), it reminded me why I got into this crazy metal stuff in the first place. It's just so damn fun. Watching these guys play their brand of "fuckin brutaal" death metal as front man Frank Mullen would say, is like watching a hoard of charging rhino's solve rubicks cubes as they pummel every and all creatures in their path. The music is so complicated, so cartoonish-ly heavy and violence inducing, you can't help but marvel and smile at the end result. Especially when a band can pull it off live as masterfully as Suffocation has been doing for more than 20 years. Their new (old, long story) drummer Dave Culross is a fucking beast of man. He can adapt his playing style to fit all their old material crafted by original drummer Mike Smith (who is rad as hell in his own right) but all the new songs that he wrote (as well as the jams from the Despise The Sun EP from his previous, brief stint in Suffocation) are just on a whole other level.