Live Show Review: Thy Art Is Murder — September 18th, 2017
When I initially bought my ticket to this show, it was part of the Double Homicide Tour and featured Decapitated as the headliner. On September 2nd, it was revealed that Decapitated had been arrested and stand accused of abducting and gang-raping a woman in Spokane, Washington. This article will not be commenting on that situation. The tour continued, with Thy Art Is Murder assuming the role of headliner while Decapitated dropped off the tour to deal with their legal issues. I was going chiefly for Ghost Bath so my plans went unchanged.
The opening band was a local Ontario act, A Scar For The Wicked, a five-piece death metal band who ripped through a good set of about half-a-dozen songs. These guys set the tone for most of the evening, mixing straight death metal with some deathcore grooves. A solid live performance is a good way to get my attention, and I am a bit of a sucker for local bands. The group's Bandcamp page has both of their EPs avaiable, and they earned a look with what I saw from them tonight. They sounded well rehearsed and had a solid half-hour to showcase themselves, and I think they made the most of it. I spoke to one of the guitarists later in the evening, and he informed me that they were a last-minute addition to the bill after Decapitated dropped off the tour. I think they made the most of the opportunity.
The main reason I bought tickets to the show was to see Ghost Bath again. I had seen them back in March of this year, at a venue that has since closed down, and really enjoyed their live show — although it felt a little short. They played a mix of material from Moonlover and Starmourner which blended together very well. Previously, had not yet released the new album, so despite seeing them 6 months ago their set was sufficiently different both times. Ghost Bath really stood out, with their melodic and atmospheric style, given how rooted in death metal every other band on the bill was. The band's performance was excellent, though, again, I wish they had done a longer set. They played "The Golden Number," so I can't complain too much, but it did feel like just as everyone was getting into the material, they were done. The band likes to feign an encore, as members slowly leave the stage as a taped piano piece plays. I didn't fall for it, this time, and made a break for the bathroom while everyone else got swerved.
Up next was Fallujah, a band I had absolutely no prior knowledge of, but I figured they were probably deathcore given the rest of the lineup. This assumption proved correct, and the band's live set was intense and full of energy. Fallujah had a tight mix of brutality and chugging groove, and the mosh pit started to get worked into a frenzy. At one point, someone slammed into my back and sent my glasses flying off my head. I have no idea how I managed to find my glasses on the floor considering I was on my 5th tallboy of beer, and can't see more than 2 feet without them. Fallujah sufficiently impressed me enough to look into their material, and they avoided being associated with the loss / destruction of my brand new glasses which I bought only 3 weeks ago.
We finally got to the headliners, and I was already extremely satisifed with the show; the concert could have ended at this point, and I would have been happy. Thy Art Is Murder, another band I previously knew nothing about, really made a statement. Every band on the bill was obviously heavy, but Thy Art Is Murder were absolutely crushing. Another deathcore act, but they also mixed in some tasteful synths and sampled female vocals that really filled out their sound. As with every other band that wasn't Ghost Bath, I came away from this performance really intrigued by the band. Deathcore is just not a subgenre I spend much time on, but this show was a prompt to go reconsider that position.
The show ended around 11:00pm, and I was spent — and more than a little drunk by that point. I had a great time at this show; I went for the purpose of seeing an opening band and now I have 3 more projects to investigate further. I wouldn't say I was a huge fan of Decapitated, but I've followed them since I reviewed a promo copy of their 2002 album Nihility, and was impressed by a band who were my age (18 at the time) who played like such seasoned pros. I had not followed the band in years, and their recent legal troubles are really unfortunate — for all parties involved — and I hope they get resolved soon. That aside, the show went on: I left very impressed with all of the bands, the sound was excellent and I had a great night out.
Published: September 20th, 2017