GIG REVIEW: VENOM INC. & NECROPHAGIA Live At Denver, CO
Arguably one of the biggest names in the black/speed metal genre, Venom got their start in 1979 simultaneously creating and pushing the boundaries of heavy metal as we know it. Known for the classic genre defining albums, ‘Welcome to Hell’, ‘Black Metal’, and ‘At War with Satan’, these veterans also know how to put on a killer show. Well… in Venom, Inc. that is. Original members Mantas (guitar) and Abaddon (drums) have reformed with The Demolition Man (bass/vocals) for touring purposes without the original, Cronos, and hit the road in the United States for the entirety of January 2016. Joining these veterans would be yet another genre defining band, Necrophagia, known to be one of the first death metal bands specializing in the horror metal genre.
I was lucky enough to catch this tour on Thursday, January 14th , at the Gothic Theater in Denver, CO. Fantastic local support came from Boulder sludge/grind band Call of the Void and blackened thrash metal band Weapönizer from Denver. I have seen Weapönizer many times around here, and I always enjoy their no bullshit heavy metal show. Call of the Void however, was a new name to me, and holy hell they delivered. With a perfect balance of groove and grind, I could have watched their set all night, despite Necrophagia being one of my all time favorite bands.
Being one of Metal Wani’s live photographers, I was really looking forward to seeing Necrophagia for the chance to capture my all time favorite death metal band. Then the fog machine rolled in, and well, let’s just say, I didn’t bother trying all that long. It added a great ambiance to the Gothic, especially with legendary vocalist Killjoy and his stage props of a woman’s torso and various other body parts; I get the fog… but I still hated it. Playing classics (and my personal favorites) like “Blood Freak”, “Embalmed Yet I Breathe”, and “Cannibal Holocaust” I thought I had died and gone to hell. But the best was still yet to come.
Venom, Inc. hit the stage with a furious storm of blackened speed metal and the Denver crowd went crazy. Beginning with “Prime Evil”, these guys continued to play a lot of tunes that Venom themselves didn’t even play too often, with a nice spattering of classics like “Die Hard”, “Welcome to Hell” and “Black Metal”. For a Thursday night, they really lit up the crowd and kept everyone well entertained into the wee hours of the morning until they closed on a perfect “Witching Hour”.
In all honesty, a tour like this doesn’t hit the states too often. Not only do you get to see the pioneers of everything speed/black metal, but supporting them are pioneers of death metal… a truly legendary lineup that can’t be missed! If this tour is coming to or near your city, get out and witness the best of the best tear it up.