Went to see Kataklysm w/ Fleshgod Apocalypse , Vital Remains, and Rose Funeral at Empire w/ John and Milla ($18). We got there as Rose Funeral was finishing up... their last 2 songs I think. I wasn't impressed by them. There was a pretty good crowd there (~100 people at the fullest). I'd not seen any of these bands before, so I was not sure what crowd to expect besides crazy moshing.
each band had a decent amount off stuff. Vital Remains had a DVD, several shirts. Kataklysm had their latest CD and that Iron Will compilation and a few shirts (nothing that struck my fancy)- $20. Fleshgod Apocalypse had several shirts (again, nothing great)-$20, and their latest CD ($15).
Vital Remains- came on and apparently is somewhat known/popular, judging from the insanity during their set. They had moshing, wall of death, circle pits, crowd surfing, and stage diving (BOTH of which were firsts for JAXX/Empire). The vocalist got down into the crowd at a couple points to motivate the moshers. They sounded a bit muddy, but def brutal and quite energetic, which was symbiotic between the crowd and the band. If they had a CD I woulda purchased one after their set. I enjoyed it, despite knowing ZERO songs. We were at the right railing and not on the floor for their set.
Fleshgod Apocalypse came out to even more applause and shouting, and I think a lot more people came to see them instead of Kataklysm (or were plum tuckered out after their set to be moving around a lot for Kataklysm). We moved down to the floor and John stayed at his overwatch position (SMART MAN). There was some pretty crazy moshing for most every song (including some slow parts which I thought were flat out unacceptable to be moshing to). I though their first song sounded like crap. So we moved from the right side of the stage to right of center. Then they sounded a bit better, but still something was wrong with the synth/vox/drums balance. Its hard to balance that live, IMO, so I was not sure. I was bugged that I was expecting them to sound better, and then they sounded less than great. Entertaining but disappointed. Milla may have different thoughts cause she was in the pit a lot for them. After their set, a lot of people rolled out, to what I thought would be smoke breaks, etc. But it was distinctly less crowded for Kataklysm...
Kataklysm came on at 11, and played until about 11:56. I must say Empire has clamped down on their 'curfew.' I thought they sounded great. A bit muddy with the vocals (but that is kind of expected with the harsh death metal vox), but BRUTAL otherwise. I was able to get up pretty close (about 8 ft from the stage/band.) and get some pretty decent shots. They played a lot of songs I wanted to hear, and some others I was not familiar with but that still sounded great. I believe the bass drum on "As I Slither" was even louder than anything that night (almost Loudness drum level loud), and was like true heavy metal thunder \m/ I headbanged constantly ("Prevail" was my favourite of the night) and almost tweaked my neck. I saw John almost got caught in a mosh at one point. There was NOT very much moshing compared to the two bands before. SO I figured that the moshers were either tuckered out, left, or were taking extended break. Either way, they were def worth the trip out. I thought they played kinda short (1 hr), but it seems that Empire is keeping things a bit more orderly than JAXX.
There was this small kid (probably like 11yrs old), and another kid, a little taller, w/ his forearm in a cast, and this tiny girl (as tall as the small kid!, underage (had x on her had), "marta") ... ALL IN THE PIT at various points. All I could think of was that kid must think he has the coolest uncle/dad/whatever who brought him to this show and get him a shirt and into the mosh and circle pits! \m/ There was also this girl in a short, strapless dress. She bought a Kataklysm shirt or something but otherwise remained at the raised rail. Kinda...oddly dressed...for a death metal show. This one black guy stopped and chatted to us twice, once mentioning to watch out when Fleshgod Apocalypse was on...he'd be crazy in the pit. I saw him at the floor for maybe 2 songs, and in the circle pit for maybe 1/5 of one song. He liked Blackguard tho.
Where Is Your God Now
Hammer Down the Nails
Savior to None... Failure for All...
Let the Killing Begin
Thru Our Scars
In Words of Desperation
Taking the World by Storm
The Night They Returned
Where the Enemy Sleeps...
At the Edge of the World
Crippled & Broken
As I Slither
Push the Venom