Live at Fiddler’s Green
December 8, 2012
Review and Pics by InfamousButcher
New York Death Metal masters Suffocation (Suffo) are still skinning and incinerating audiences alive some 24 years after their formation! While putting the finishing touches on their new slab of brutality PINNACLE OF BEDLAM, which will be out in February 2013, Suffo decided to give the hardcore fans in Stamford, Connecticut a special intimate VIP show at Fiddler’s Green. For $30 a ticket, in addition to a killer show in a tiny venue, fans could hang out with the band before and after the show! How cool is that?!? Even though I live 3 hours from Connecticut, when I saw this advertised on Facebook I knew right away it was a must see! Tonight would be my 5th Suffo show and I was pumped!
Fiddler’s Green is a little Irish Pub with a restaurant that specializes in pizza. The place was surprisingly clean and well kept. The “stage”, if you want to call it that, was just a few inches off the floor and there were soft barriers in front of it that went up to my waist. The 4 opening acts did not use the “stage”; they played in front of it instead. Sounds strange but this setup actually worked out just fine. Sound quality was amazingly good, loud, clear, no distortion, and plenty of separation between vocals, guitars, bass, and drums. About 100 people came out for the show. I met a few great metalheads before the show and we talked shop – I LOVE talking shop with other death metallers and finding out what people like, what bands they’ve seen, what venues are good, finding out about bands I don’t know about (thanks Nick!), etc. Usually, death metal fans are passionate about all metal – hey if you can appreciate Suffo than you probably have been around the block with lots other of types of metal before you got into stuff that heavy, so you probably like Priest, Slayer, Sabbath, Maiden, Megadeth, Motorhead, etc. in addition to the ultra-brutal stuff. This is how I think and I’ve found other death metallers to be similar to me. Also, it makes me very happy to meet young fans of the extreme metal genre. That means the scene won’t die, onto the next generation we go!
Before Suffo came on, guitarist Terrance Hobbs came in to greet fans, take pictures, and just shoot the breeze as his girlfriend set up the merch booth. Terrance is a great guy, down to earth, cool, and easy to talk to. I got a picture with him and asked him about the new album, tour plans, and if they would be playing any new songs tonight. Terrance said they signed a deal with Nuclear Blast that wouldn’t allow them to play any new songs until the album was out, so that meant classic set tonight, which is fine by me! I will catch these guys again in 2013 to hear the new stuff. Without saying, PINNACLE OF BEDLAM is a must purchase for me, I can get a copy at Record Revival the weekend before it comes out.
Frank, Terrance, Guy, Derek, and Dave took the little stage at 11PM and tore into “Thrones of Blood” just inches from our fucking faces! I’ve never been to anything quite like it! Frank was high fiving fans as he growled and grunted! More than once I thought he was going to gouge my fucking eyes out as he rabidly gestured towards the crowd, bellowing subhuman roars! The band was tight and together, with powerful riffs from Terrance and Guy, gut punching bass from Derek, and hailstorm drumming from Dave! The sound was damn near flawless, the best sounding Suffo show I’ve seen all year.
Frank was in a talkative mood as usual; he educated the crowd with his nuggets of wisdom (“I hope you’re not going to waste your time going to church tomorrow.”) and gave us his perspective on the supposed end of the world on Dec 21, which was a fucking riot. Frank said something like, “Can you imagine if the end of the world is Friday Dec 21? Boy would that suck. You work your ass off all week, hoping to get laid on the weekend, and the fucking world ends! Make sure you have plenty of canned goods, alcohol, and shotgun shells!” Frank was on fire with his vocals tonight, altering his depth and pitch at different times during songs. My favorites of the night included a crematorium hot “Jesus Wept” (As your body enters the FURNACE!), “Effigy of the Forgotten” (best breakdown of all time!), “Catatonia” (as old as it gets for Suffo, I want to die no reason for living!), “Pierced From Within” (INSANELY BRUTAL!), “Liege of Inveracity” (LLLLOOOWWW pitch guttural growls!), “Funeral Inception” (God forbid – GOD FORBIDDEN!), and “Infecting the Crypts” (good pit action for this old crowd pleasing killer! Are we sure Frank is human?).
The crowd was a little tame for my taste and how can you have a fucking Suffocation show without a pit, right? So somewhere around “Cataclysmic Purification” I started one myself with an eager metalhead named Sean. It was a lot of fun and I broke my watch, so sign of a good pit! There’s something about the camaraderie of moshing, a bonding not unlike two boxers after they have beaten the shit out of each other for 12 rounds. Afterwards Sean was like my metal brother, he was just so thrilled someone else wanted to lock horns and mix it up a bit!
After “Infecting the Crypts” the crowd cheered lustily demanding one more song, so Frank and co. delivered with a crushing, brilliant “Breeding the Spawn”! It was the perfect capper to the set. After the show I spoke to Frank and got a picture with him. As always, he was friendly and gracious to all fans, just one of the coolest guys in metal. We got our tickets after the show – they were signed by the band and had a band picture on one side – this is the coolest looking ticket I’ve ever bought! Suffocation is still at the top of their game folks. Great times lie ahead with PINNACLE OF BEDLAM, can’t wait until February!
1. Thrones of Blood
2. Effigy of the Forgotten
4. Abomination Reborn
5. Pierced From Within
6. Funeral Inception
7. Liege of Inveracity
8. Cataclysmic Purification
9. Devoid of Truth
10. Jesus Wept
11. Infecting the Crypts
12. Breeding the Spawn