Massacre @ The Barfly, London

7th May 2014          Review by Lily Randall

It’s been 21 years since Massacre added ‘From Beyond’ to a collection of classics spawn from the Tampa death metal scene and despite an unmemorable release in 2006, the veterans comeback has felt like an incredibly long time coming.

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The Barfly may seem like a small venue for such a comeback but on this particular May Day, it’s comfortably cosy by the time the gig commences.

Diesel King kick off proceedings with an unapologetic crushing that certainly gets necks stretched out for the rest of tonight’s proceedings. Due to being on home turf, the Londoners have an eager crowd awaiting their ruthless heaviness and with a commendable energy across the stage as well, the sludge outlet certainly make their mark. With two EPs to create a hardy set from, there are moments for the death metal fans throughout the venue to enjoy as they speed up their down-tuned sludge for ultimate pummelling.

Cerebral Fix are up next with their Brummie-based crossover that despite reeking with speed and energy, it not received as well as one would think. Despite vocalist Simon Forrest constantly trying to stir up a frenzy whilst he owns the stage like a rabid terrier, the crowd are for the most part distant from getting into the thrash/punk attitude from the eighties.

For many tonight, Untimely Demise are an unknown entity but it becomes apparent as to why Massacre have bought them along from the off. With last year’s album ‘Systematic Eradication’ being produced by ex-Megadeth guitarist Glen Drover, the Canadian’s sound is certainly influences by the thrash titans, however their interesting blend of adding melodic death metal into the mix makes for a refreshing set. With hair flying both on and off stage, the band ensue the first pit of the night and are bound to have collected some new fans to their troops.

By the time the headliners get onto the stage, the room is muggy and crammed with those gagging to see Massacre ‘Back From Beyond’ the grave. The influential four-piece are thoroughly experienced when it comes to creating a horror story atmosphere live and tonight is no exception with instrumental ‘The Ancient Ones’ sitting as an ideal opener.

This year’s ‘Back From Beyond’ frequents the set list and merges smoothly with the rest of the bands discography with tracks such as ‘False Revelation’ not farfetched from the original masterpiece. Despite the intensity of this thrashy death hybrid, it’s no surprise that the likes of ‘Succubus’ and ‘Biohazard’ get chaos really commencing and soon enough the set has come to a close without feeling like long at all. An encore of ‘Corpsegrinder’ and a cover of Death’s ‘Multilation’ is a perfect way to conclude the night and Massacre secure their place in the “recent awesome comebacks” list.

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