Benighted - Terrorize The Sick Tour - Marché Gare, Lyon, France, 30th October 2007
|Event:||Benighted + Kronos: Terrorize The Sick Tour|
I love big cities when winter is getting close. I have always felt there was something special in the air, some kind of peculiar smell, a different glow in the light, that you only find between October and December in really big cities. I find it exhilarating and refreshing. When I think of it, the cool weather, the big skies and the freezing wind make it my favourite time of the year. That, and the metal shows. Oh yeah, there's a lot of metal shows in the three months before Christmas. And Tuesday, October 30th was an especially fine night for some BRUTAL DEATH METAL haha.
I had been looking forward to seeing Benighted live since I first listened to 2003's Insane Cephalic Production. I have always been sure that their groovy, grindcore-flavoured brutal death metal must be an amazing sight live. Besides, Benighted is at home in Lyon. To give you an idea of their popularity here, let me give you a few figures: Benighted alone attracted more people than the Immolation + Grave + Krisiun and the The Haunted + Municipal Waste shows put together. They drained more people than After Forever. The venue was more crowded for Benighted than for Enslaved and Keep Of Kalessin. This show was first booked at the Lyon's Hall, a really small venue without sound engineer or security service that looks more like a rehearsal place than a proper concert room. Seeing the number of pre-sales and judging by the amount of people that planned on going to the show, it was agreed that the concert would take place at the Marché Gare, which can welcome about 400 people. So everything was cooking up to be an amazing night.
As always, I arrived late, but still on time to see all the bands. First were the locals of In Arkadia and their decent melodic thrash/death metal. I didn't know they were supposed to play, but I quite enjoyed their set. I was a bit too long though, and they were a little too melodic to really be in tune with the purpose of the night, which was to blast people senseless.
After a few minutes necessary to refuel at the beer stand, Recueil Morbide hit the stage. There's more to say about the very friendly attitude of the band members than about their music. Their set was in no way bad, but their blackened ultra-brutal death metal was quite repetitive and eventually slipped down the boring path. I guess their sound problems (which introduced the star of the night: the brilliant - sarcasm inside - sound engineer, who managed to fuck up the sound of every single band) did not help either. The only track that proposed something different was one of the upcoming album, which introduced some pretty cool clean vocals.
The frontman was very cool though, joking with the audience, playing the paedophile, jumping in the pit to mosh with the people there etc. His bandmates made an original announcement at the end of the show: "our singer hasn't had sex since March, so if you know anyone, man, woman, dog, anything, even a potential girlfriend, please report to us". That says a lot about the not stressful at all atmosphere of the night.
After a very short and again unsuccessful soundcheck, the Northeastern dudes of Kronos were up. Having really enjoyed their latest effort, "The Hellenic Terror", I was quite keen for seeing them live. And did they deliver the goods! I let myself be carried by the brutality of the music and absolutely did not pay attention to the tracklist or anything. I simply enjoyed a good death metal show, with a band well helped by the warm audience - the warmth of the venue being somewhat increased by the constant moshing and the lack of any ventilation system. The only annoying thing being the way the singer growls. Seeing him in profile, he seems to do always the same lips movements and ends up with the exact same sounds for 45 minutes. That's ok for Sublime Cadaveric Decomposition, as they don't bother with lyrics, but it tends to be annoying for such Kronos. In spite of this minor shortcoming and the usual sound issues, this was a cool show.
And now, my friends, is time for the craziest show I've seen in a very, very long time. Benighted being one of my favourite bands, I was like a kid, trembling with excitation and anticipation before the show started. And when the band opened with the very sick 'Nemesis', I though I would get exactly what I expected: 45-60 minutes of brutal yet catchy metal with amazing vocals on stage, and massive moshing in the pit. That's what we got for three songs. Afterwards, Julien Truchan (as great a live singer as he is in studio), seemingly worried with lack of creativity displayed by the moshers, declared: "now this is a crazy song you all know, so I want you to fuck up this place, I want you to come up onstage, to mosh till death, to tear this place apart! Do whatever you want, we're here to fucking hang out together. This is Identisick!". Enough said, 20 people got up onstage, and spent the whole song headbanging beside the band members, and crowdsurfing over the most massive moshpit I've seen in this city yet. You saw guys with bloody noses jump down in the pit, mosh a bit, the go up on the scene to show off their headbanging abilities and start again. You had up to 4 four guys and girls stage-diving at the same time. This was good, friendly, violent fun, to quote a famous thrash band. This was total chaos. There were so many people onstage that the guitarists and the bassist had to go in the back so they had some room for playing. So you would think the band would actually ask everyone to get down and start a "normal" show again. Well, think again. Everyone stood up there, and the last half-hour of the show took place with more people on the scene than in the pit. People were moshing onstage and in the pit, headbanging onstage and in the pit. That was an absolutely mesmerizing thing to behold, and I so regret I couldn't take a camera with me. After forty-five minutes of this chaotic, unseen before experience, the band announced their last song, the Napalm Death cover "Suffer the Children", during which the moshpit managed to be even more brutal than before. Benighted then left the still crowded stage, but came back after the biggest ovation I've seen in a long time. 'Foetus' was next, and saw the singer and the bassist play almost the whole song while crowd-surfing. They then left again, still with about 30 or 40 people on stage, but came back again to the general rounds of applause, to play an unplanned last song, "The Underneath", an extremely brutal grindcore song taken from Icon.
When Benighted finally left the stage, I felt exhausted. And yet I don't do moshpits, so I can't even imagine what it must have been like for the moshers. This had truly been an exhilarating and amazing experience. I think it is the first time I see a (renowned) band that is truly close to its audience. I had never seen a show in which the headliner cares more about the crowd than about its own performance. And then I realized that Benighted had only played 50 minutes. 50 minutes… I usually whine when bands play such a short show. But those were the craziest, most intense 50 minutes of my life. So here's my advice. If you ever have the opportunity to see Benighted live, seriously, don't miss it. You won't live such an experience so often.
Setlist Benighted (not really in order and there's one song missing, but still):
Saw It All
Suffer The Children
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| Baz Anderson
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