The Black Dahlia Murder / Job For A Cowboy / The Red Chord / Gorerotted at The Mean Fiddler, London

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The Black Dahlia Murder/Job For A Cowboy

feat. The Red Chord and Gorerotted

The Mean Fiddler, London, 14th December 2007
All live pics and review by HannTu

It was an evening of Metal Blade’s finest American deathcore bands, together with < ?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags" />UK death/grind band Gorerotted a special guest for the London gig. The line outside Mean Fiddler featured an interesting selection: hardcore youngsters with shaven heads, death metal fans with Obituary and Necrophagist shirts, a scattering of punks, but peculiarly enough, it was predominantly emos who turned up. I’m still trying to get my head around the connection between emos and a deathcore show. No matter, it promised to be a good night.

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A criminally low amount of people arrived early enough for Gorerotted’s set, and it was a shame because the band put on a very determined show. Never mind that the singer looks like Eminem, he worked the meagre crowd for all it was worth. The band was tight and impressive, featuring former Cradle of Filth, Extreme Noise Terror and Bal-Sagoth guitarist John Piras. There’s a certain poetic knack running through the band’s songwriting department as well, just check out the gore-but-funny song titles.





Fuck Your Arse With Broken Glass

Gagged, Shagged, Bodybagged

Nervous Gibbering Wreck

Masticated by the Spasticated

Stab Me Till I Cum

Pain As A Prelude to Death

Zombie Graveyard Rape Bonanza







The Red Chord


The Red Chord made some waves with their 2002 debut album FUSED TOGETHER IN REVOLVING DOORS for their version of some technical death/grindcore. To be honest, I didn’t find them interesting, and haven’t followed up on them since, nor heard their later albums, although I understand they have gone from strength to strength since then.



Much like Gorerotted before them, they put up a spirited and extremely energetic performance. Vocalist Guy Kozowyk exhorted both crowd and bandmates, not that either needed any encouragement. He also engaged in some great banter, and the line of the evening was when he addressed the emos in the crowd, “How many of you guys have haircuts that cost more than 50 bucks? Do you share your make-up with your girlfriends?” Rib splitting stuff.



Musically, I didn’t hear any variation from what Job For A Cowboy would be putting on in a few moments: flying riffs, thunderous drumming, growling and spitting vocals, with some powerful and inciteful breakdowns. The difference came in the band’s overall energy and will, with Guy jumping over the photo pit and ending up in the front row more than once, snarling into the faces of those lucky enough to be in there. Great live band.








Job For A Cowboy



I think that this band has been unfairly maligned by a section of the metal community, although I can also see the reasons for that. Much of the dislike probably stems from the strong hardcore influences found on their EP DOOM, and the subsequent embrace of JFAC by the hardcore/metalcore crowd. This was probably exacerbated by their quite meteoric rise to attention, supposedly the first “Myspace band” to be signed by a major label purely on the basis of their popularity on Myspace and the number of friends they had. Meh. I enjoyed DOOM, even the pig squealing, although I thought GENESIS, their debut full-length lacked the spontaneity of DOOM. Anyway I was quite interested to see how they performed live, as I’d heard they put on an ass-kicking show.




Disappointing. Musically, I suppose they were good and tight, although the guitar riffing dissolved into a wall of noise. What sounded great and clear on the record didn’t really translate itself live, what sounded mildly interesting on the CD faded from memory 5 seconds later when played live. But what really disappointed was the relative lack of energy from the band. They took water breaks after almost EVERY song, the band with the exception of the bassist looked distinctly disinterested. The singer rarely addressed the crowd, and they just plundered through the songs with mechanical efficiency.



Compared to Gorerotted and The Red Chord before them, and Black Dahlia Murder later, they delivered the low performance of the evening. With a tour with Behemoth coming up soon, they’re obviously going places, but that Friday night in London, not very impressive, especially compared to the other acts.






The Black Dahlia Murder


Oh yeah, hell yeah! I only got into this band recently when asked to review their latest album NOCTURNAL about a month or so ago. Like many others I’d been put off by their image, but how looks do deceive. I was pretty impressed by NOCTURNAL, and I was really interested to see how they put it on stage.



A testicle crushing performance of nuclear bomb proportions is how I’d put it. And going a little further, frontman Trevor Strnad has to take a goodly slice of the plaudits. He was an absolute maniac onstage, and I’d imagine he’d been a real demon in the mosh pit as well. Bouncing around, addressing all sections of the crowd, screaming his lungs out, the man had infinite energy. He constantly bombarded the front row fans with spit and sweat, and when you’re told by a chubby little banshee to “bang your heads motherfuckers”, you fucking DO bang your heads. Motherfuckers. He practised what he preached, led by example etc.




They ripped through the set list with nary a break, unlike the Cowboys from Brokeback before them. I don’t know how else to describe their performance without using the words ‘dynamite’, ‘explosive’, ‘energetic’, ‘impassioned’ and ‘aggressive’. Thesaurus time! Awesome performance.






It was hardly a mixed bag as far as genres were concerned, and the crowd definitely knew what they were in for. It wasn’t a full house by any means, but all four bands were generally very well received. However I found it rather disgraceful that none of the four bands paid tribute or even mentioned the name of Chuck Schuldiner, when metalheads across the world were remembering the life of one of death metal’s pioneers and one of the true “good blokes” of metal music. Chuck died of brain stem cancer 6 years ago on December 13th, 2001. I doubt that 25% of the crowd at the Mean Fiddler that night even knew who Chuck was, or that the bands on stage that night must have been influenced to some extent or other by Death and SCREAM BLOODY GORE, HUMAN, LEPROSY etc. RIP Chuck.



Thanks to Andy Turner at Metal Blade UK for the photo pass!



The Red Chord

Job For A Cowboy

The Black Dahlia Murder