Heart of Steel: Concert Reviews

Exodus - Tempo of the Damned European tour 2004
Stengade 30, Copenhagen, Denmark
June 10th, 2004

Review and pictures by Anders Sandvall

Earlier this year Exodus released one of the strongest comeback albums in recent memory called TEMPO OF THE DAMNED. Live they are just as strong with a brilliant lesson in how old school bay area thrash should be played.

Their European tour started the 29th of May in Germany and they had reached the halfway point of the tour when they landed in Copenhagen Denmark. The day after they were scheduled to play in Sweden at the Sweden Rock Festival and after that is the rest of Scandinavia’s turn to host the thrash legends.

Stengade 30 is a very small club in the middle of Copenhagen with a capacity of about 300 people. In other words, it can get very sweaty and warm in there (which you can see on the pictures) but it’s okay anyway because you can get pretty close to the bands and that creates a very close and intimate feeling. But this evening, there was about 100 people there ‘cause of Sweden Rock Festival which had just started. The day before the Exodus show, The Haunted and Entombed had a secret warm up gig at Stengade 30 and then the crowd was much larger.

There were two support acts before Exodus entered the small stage a little late because problems with the equipment. But after that was fixed Gary, Steve, Rick, Tom and Jack delivered 1hr 35mins of pure old school bay area trash. Instead of doing a greatest hits show they put the main focus on the excellent new album but of course they did some older songs to the delight of the fans. Some of the new songs they played include “BLACKLIST”, “SHROUD OF URINE” and “WAR IS MY SHEPHERD”. “PIRANHA”, “TILL DEATH DO US PART” and “BONDED BY BLOOD” were some of the older songs. Altogether they did 15 songs and 7 of them were from the new album.

Exodus ran through all the songs and didn’t do any encores but I think that it was just as hot for them on stage as it was for the crowd, it was like being in the Tropics!

They opened the show with the first song on TEMPO OF THE DAMNED called “SCAR SPANGLED BANNER” and already at the beginning it was only to surrender to the old heroes. They totally crushed the headbanging audience, who had started a little mosh pit at the center of the floor, with the opening track. Even though the show started a bit late (25 min. to 1am!) it was full speed ahead and the crowd helped out in the songs with some heavy sing a long. The guys looked a bit worn out on stage but that probably depends on the hard life they have lived, despite that they seemed to really enjoy the show that night.

Mr. Souza didn’t talk much between the songs - it was mostly “Come on Copenhagen” and “I want to see the mosh pit move around again”. He introduced all of the songs and he was polite enough to thank the crowd after every track. He also invited us to sing along in songs like “BONDED BY BLOOD” and “WAR IS MY SHEPHERD”. He told us that the band hasn’t been in Copenhagen for about 12 to 15 years and that they really liked the city. Vocally he sounds just like on the album.

Mr. Holt and Mr. Hunolt delivered some really strong guitar playing with heavy riffs and stunning guitar solos and duels between the both of them. Mr. Hunolt did some serious head banging through the whole gig and because of the lack of space on stage the guys mostly stood put on their side.

Mr. Gibson was the most laid back man that night and you could hardly see Mr. Hunting behind all his drums. But he was really fast and technical and he kept up the tempo through all the songs...which is quite amazing when you think of the speed of their songs.

I think the music sounded more melodic than it does on the albums but they still did their famous old school bay area thrash that they do so good. When they had finished their last song on the set-list they did one more before they called it a night. That song was the bonus track from “TEMPO OF THE DAMNED” the old AC/DC cover “DIRTY DEEDS DONE DIRT CHEAP” which Mr. Souza made the somewhat tired crowd to introduce themselves. Mr. Holt got some problems with his guitar so they did the first verse with only one guitar, needless to say that he was very angry at his guitar tech before he got the guitar to work again.

Exodus delivered a brilliant show this night and the set list was magical. The sound left nothing to the imagination and the band really seemed to have a great time on stage and meeting their fans in Copenhagen.

A legendary band is back in a big way and I hope they continue to deliver what they do best - old school bay area thrash. I met the guys earlier during the day and they all were very nice and they also went into the crowd and talked to everyone. Everyone who wanted to talk to the band got a chance.

Scar spangled banner
Deliver us to evil
Till death do us part
Shroud of urine
And then there were none
Forward march
War is my shepherd
Bonded by blood
Tempo of the damned
Dirty deeds done dirt cheap (cover)

Thanks to Jaap at the head office on Nuclear Blast in Germany for help at the show. Also thanks to the local security at Stengade 30 for the friendly treatment I received as compared to the security at Pumpehuset.

More info about the band: www.exodusattacks.com

Label: www.nuclearblast.de