Concert Reviews

Kataklysm - Aborted - Aenimus - The Zenith Passage
Apr 16th 2014

DNA Lounge, San Francisco, CA, USA

First off, despite the fact Kataklysm are from Montreal (my home town), I never really got into the band, and so we actually left before the headliner. However, the two bands I was really interested in seeing was The Zenith Passage, which is one of my newest favorite up and coming bands, and Aborted, who I had seen once before, but since then they've released some amazing albums, including my top spot of 2012 "Global Flatline".

So the concert opened with Zenith Passage, and I can say I am now officially old. The moment you see a band and say "how, they look young", you have now become old. And let me tell you becoming old sucks! But anyways, for a band just starting out, I was really impressed with their debut EP, it's incredibly tight and well produced, and I wanted to see how that translated to the stage. Overall, their short set was really great. They played 4 out of 5 songs from their EP, and one new song from the upcoming debut that sounded great. The band had great stage presence. The sound could use a little tweaking, like the bass drum sound when going fast become a little blurred, although the slower stuff sounded good. Also, some of the squawks and other areas that required extreme tightness were tight but not razor sharp. These are the sorts of things that only come with experience though, so it'll be interesting to see how good the band gets after a few years of touring and really perfecting the little nuances. But as it stands, they're already quite professional sounding and put on a good show.

Aenimus were decent, but in general I found their music didn't have enough space in the riffs, so plenty of strumming and 4/4 time signatures, which made for it being a little dull. Maybe if I knew their albums well it would have been different, but as someone who's never heard their music professionally recorded, I didn't see anything in the show to make me want to explore the band further.

Then Aborted took the stage. I knew I was in for a good show when the drummer let rip a ridiculous burst of highly triggered double bass to test the sound, my god he's fast. I know people don't tend to last long in the band, but hopefully he sticks around. Sven (the vocalist) is a great front man, he's this super tall skinny guy with tremendous energy on stage, he's obviously really into it. They played mostly songs off of "Goremageddon", "Global Flatline", and their new album, yet to be released, but they had copies for sale at their merch booth. From "Goremageddon" they played 'Sanguine Verses', 'Meticulous Invagination', and 'Parasitic Flesh Resection'. They played 'Origin Of Disease' from Global, which has one of the highest play counts on my itunes, and the song was great live. They also played the slow plodding piece 'Expurgation Euphoria', which got a crowd moving. Then they played a few tracks from their new album like 'The Extirpation Agenda', 'The Davidian Deceit', 'Die Verzweiflung' and 'Necrotic Manifesto'. The two new guitar players did a good job on all the songs new and old, the bass player was reallly high energy and moved around a lot, and the drummer was again just fantastic, as well as being one of the fastest guys I've seen, he played with such ease, making faces at band members, smiling, playing around. It was like the drumming was just so easy to him, which is ridiculous considering how fast it was. He broke his bass drum on the end of the last song, but did a quick repair to do a fast encore. The band was super tight, obviously, since the band has been around awhile, they have the touring experience to know how to cut off a note super precise.

I'm glad I got a chance to see both a veteran of the field, and the next generation who are coming up fast. It was a good contrast.

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