Annihilator In Tallinn
The Canadian classic thrash act Annihilator issued their newest, self-titled, album this year in May. For all those who appreciate the group's early works, the wonderful Alice In Hell and the albums of the first half of the 90's, this album has, in a way, proven to be a return to the roots. Anyway, on a humid and chilly, but luckily not too cold Saturday evening, 23rd of October, Annihilator reached Tallinn. This was such an honour that also Tallinn had found a place among the towns visited by the band during their tour.
As Annihilator is a very straightforward and fast and energetic band, we should get to the point in a fast and energetic way as well. The quartet, maestro Jeff Waters with his glowing red axe, Dave Padden handling vocals and guitar, Alberto Campuzano with bass and Carlos from Peru behind the drum kit owned the stage already since the first seconds. The relatively small club offered a home-like atmosphere which even boosted the band's power. A downside of this might have been the lack of air at one point since the flaming musicians set the audience on such a fire that it really heated up the venue. The roof was raised for sure.
Annihilator, who have gone through so numerous line-up changes over the years, had a solid crew during last evening's concert. The cooperation and stage chemistry between the bandmembers was intense and positive during the entire performance not to speak about the contact with the audience. Thanks to the smallness of the stage Jeff Waters could easily descend the stairs several times and provided the fans with the opportunity to admire his guitar-shredding technique right there in the middle of the crowd. The drummer supported all the metal rampage during the entire set and showed a good professional level. The wonders Jeff Waters conjured with his guitar are beyond any imagination proving once more why he's considered one of the best rock/metal virtuosos nowadays. Along with Waters Dave Padden and Alberto Campuzano were all doing a wonderful job offering the fast and vicious performance, all three also performing the vocals.
The setlist was a good one with heavy stress on the classic style of the band and the atmosphere of the Alice In Hell and the 90's era. Of course, there was also a place for the songs from the new album. Then again, songs from this release such as "The Trend" and "Betrayed" possess almost the same vigour and energy as the unforgettable "W.T.Y.D." (which everyone can sing along). Therefore, as already stated before, the new album indeed follows a similar path of the good old late 80's style. Among the generally fast song list there was also a moment of calmness when Dave Padden performed the beautiful songs "Phoenix Rising" and "Sounds Good To Me". There are people who are not that satisfied with the band since Dave Padden became the lead vocalist. Especially in these two songs Dave Padden showed the great vocal abilities he actually has. This was surely one of the show's highlights.
Now everyone knows it's not an Annihilator show if there's no "Alison what?... Alison WHAT?!..."... Right, "Alison Hell". Personally this song brings me memories of the "Resident Evil" action films where sexy Milla Jovovich plays the Alice who, just so conveniently, happens to find herself in hell. This song from the Alice In Hell album could easily be the unofficial anthem of the film series. I was hoping to hear "Crystal Ann" and "Alison Hell" already earlier during the show but, as expected, these two wonderful gems shone at their full extent at the very end of the performance. Can the hellish happiness of the crowd and the shaking of the walls be described here? Not that well, I guess. Annihilator is a band to be experienced. No video or article could give the full extent of the professional work these men commit on stage. This is a band with musicians whose guitars drip sweat and blood together with them as they play. Listen to their albums, the timeless classics and the new ones... and look forward to seeing them playing on stage again. Good to see such an influential band from the 80's still active, still doing something good, still giving wonderful performances.
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