Wednesday, June 22, 2011

0 SHOW PREVIEW: Hate Eternal, Origin, Vital Remains, Abysmal Dawn at Studio Seven

It’s summer and there are a lot of metal shows happening in the PNW. I understand why you might be tempted to skip the drive down to south Seattle this Fri even though one of the best metal tours of the summer is coming through. Trust me, I feel you. This is also gay pride weekend in Seattle and while there will undoubtedly be all kinds of dude-rubbing-on-dude action going on while the band’s are playing, the ratio of gay dudes like myself to straight dudes is usually about, well, 1 and however many sweaty metal dudes you can fit into whatever venue we’re in. So, yeah, I feel you but get your ass down to Studio Seven regardless because every band you’re going to witness is going to rule.

First up is Abysmal Dawn from Los Angeles. Earlier this year the band released “Leveling the Plane of Existence” on Relapse. There aren’t a lot of young bands playing straight up, break down free death metal these days. Abysmal Dawn is not only carrying the torch for the unpolluted genre, they are also one of the better bands in the scene as well. Crucial! Here’s a video for the track “Programmed to Consume” from the 2008 release of the same name:

Following Abysmal Dawn will be Vital Remains, a band who has had some really interesting moments in their catalog but not really released anything new in nearly 5 years. The last two records, “Icons of Evil” and “Dechristianize”, had some strong, albeit a little too lengthy, songs featuring Deicide’s Glen Benton on vocals. I have no idea who is filling out the band these days since their list of former members might actually be longer than the # of people who bought the last record. That’s not a slam on the band’s material, just a statement of fact. Here’s the band live doing “Dechristianize”:

Following Vital Remains will be Hate Eternal, one of my favorite contemporary death metal bands. Fronted by Eric Rutan, former guitarist of Morbid Angel and the producer of albums by artists as diverse as Cannibal Corpse and the Mountain Goats, Hate Eternal has released 5 solid full lengths, the most recent being “Phoenix Amongst the Ashes”. My favorite record by the band is still their second release, “King of all Kings”. Here’s a clip of that track:

Headlining Friday night will be Origin. When I first moved to Seattle 11 years ago and was getting a lay of the land I wandered into the Breakroom, the same space occupied by Chop Suey these days, to catch the latest incarnation of the Relapse Records Contaminated tour. Represented on the bill that night were headliners Incantation, a good example of death metal’s old guard, and their label mates, fresh faced representatives of the new guard, Cephalic Carnage and Origin. By the time the show was over Incantation proved why they were still revered as the occult inspired gods and Cephalic Carnage blew through a technical set of drug inspired songs from their new record, “Exploiting Dysfunction”. But it was the Kansas based band Origin that I remember most. Origin’s vocalist at the time was Mark Manning, this skinny bald guy whose head looked like it was going to explode when he sang. I seriously thought he was going to rupture. That aside, the band genuinely demonstrated the talent and performance capabilities of becoming one of America’s next big extreme metal bands.

Over the next 11 years the band released 3 more albums on Relapse that were revered by critics. Origin also performed on an impressive amount of high profile, extreme metal tours. The band joined forces with Nuclear Blast Records last year and finally released “Entity” earlier this month. The sound and dueling vocals take me back to their self-titled Relapse debut, my favorite by the band. Here’s a clip of a track from that record, “Disease Called Man”:

All of this brutality is going down Fri, June 24th, at Studio Seven. Opening will be local bands Gravenloch and Tunsa Fun. Doors are at 6pm, all ages and its $15 to get in. Don’t miss this! I’ll be in the men’s room between sets watching you pee.

By Roy Culver


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