Sepultura + Evile + Dendera
@ The Electric Ballroom
20th November 2015
Review & Photography by Graham Hilling
Doors at 6pm said the Electric Ballroom site so arriving at 6:15pm I’m surprised to find a small collection of punters loitering outside and the doors firmly shut. On enquiring, it transpires that the door time has been moved to 7pm and I have time for swift nose around Camden. On returning at 7pm I’m pleased to report that the small group of people has transformed into a somewhat larger queue!
Good news for Dendera then who are opening this evening, however, given the size of the Ballroom, they are still playing to a pretty small audience when they take to the stage at 7:30.
They play metal that blends old and new styles, producing a sound that has overtones of Maiden while still reamining individual and fresh.
Vocalist Ashley Edison has a fine line in high pitched singing to compliment standard growls and gruff singing and this characterises the sound as much as the music.
“Bloodlust” blasts out, heads bang! They close the set with “Disillusioned” from their current album “Pillars of Creation”, they have good reason not to be disillusioned to be honest, certainly judging by tonights performance and the crowd reaction!
Next up are Evile. This band should need to introduction, having been on the thrash metal scene for many years now.
It’s been a while since I’ve seen them, and never with Piers Donno-Fuller playing lead, following the departure of Ol Drake. They sound much the same as ever though, thrash metal done well, much precision and big hooks.
The set, unsurprisingly, is composed mainly of songs from the current “Skull” album. This includes the mighty “Underworld” and twisty turny “Skull”.
Matt Drake looks very pleased to be playing this evening, his usual charismatic self with a little bit of chat in between each song. They sound uncannily like Metallica (when they were good) at times.
The songs are well written, and executed with precision. Just as well because thrash done badly is very BAD indeed!
“Head of the Demon” keeps the pace at an unflagging level and before we can blink we’re at the end of the set with a blast from the past in the form of “Thrasher” which leaves no one in the Ballroom unbruised!
By the time that Sepultura venture onto the stage the venue is heaving and looks like it could be sold out, there certainly isn’t much room on the ground floor.
Sepultura are here to celebrate their 30th birthday and this means a setlist that covers a ton of old stuff. Ultimately, this is indeed what the crowd really want to hear as well. They start off in fine style with a golden oldy – “Troops of Doom”.
They have a large backlog to draw inspiration from, so selecting tracks must have been a bit of a job. Clearly they had to include a fair few from their most popular period, between 1989 and 1996, taking in classic albums like “Arise”, “Chaos AD”, “Roots” and last but not least “Beneath The Remains”. And indeed, they do – cramming in “Inner Self”, “Cut-Throat”, “Arise” and “Roots Bloody Roots”. Also, great to hear “Territory” which has the whole venue bouncing up and down.
Derrick Green is as large a frontman as you could want, commanding your attention. He also has a drum on stage with which he augments the rhythm section as the various songs warrant it.
Andreas Kisser always looks like a man possessed when I’ve seen Sepultura in the past, tonight is no exception and he whips up the audience, demanding their energy. If I have a criticism, it would be that the sound is a little thin with a single guitar when Kisser plays the lead parts. Chunky enough for the rhythm parts though!
With all of the old songs to fit in, there’s barely enough time to play anything from the current (2013) album, “The Mediator Between Head and Hands Must Be the Heart” – they manage to squeeze one in. Other set highlights are “Sepultura – Under my Skin” and “Choke”, both of which go down well with the crowd.
Impressive enough to leave me wanting more but there is no doubt that the older songs are the strongest, ironically, while they continue to play these there’s still a bright future for the Seps.
Troops of Doom
Dead Embryonic Cells
Convicted in Life
Sepultura Under My Skin
From the Past Comes the Storms
Roots Bloody Roots