The state of Texas tends to be very hot and the weather is an unpredictable piece of garbage that can’t be taken seriously. It seems like almost every metal band wants to schedule their shows in the fall, and that complicates my relationship with my wallet, but I’d rather have experiences, so… Two very solid metal bands announced a simple lineup with infinite hopes to be promising. Canadian musicians KATAKLYSM were sharing the road with Austrian Black Metal Masters BELPHEGOR. Although I had seen the first band three times, I had no idea of what to expect from the second band, and I was stunned after I witnessed their show.
This kickass North American tour landed in Dallas on a very rainy Wednesday at Gas Monkey Bar N’Grill.
The metal die-hards got to see INTERMENT and SPLATTA FISH, who took care of warming up the early attendees. Both bands performed amazingly (like usual). It seemed like the crowd was digging their show, regardless of the rain.
After the locals showed us why they were chosen to be the openers for this gig, it was about time for me to check out BELPHEGOR for the first time. Did I have the time to do my pre-game rituals before the show? Hell no. Would my experience have changed had I done it? I don’t think so. One thing that I’ve always noticed when I have the chance to see some new bands for the first time is usually it’s really difficult to feel their music and have a good time from start to finish. Well I had a blast, and I had never listened to BELPHEGOR before in my life. I’m already excited for the next time I’ll see them live, and I don’t even know when that will be.
Luckily, a set list landed in my hands and I left home with ten new songs to listen to. Their intro “Feast Upon the Dead” created a scary vibe in the venue, with the perfect and rare combination with some rain at the time, this seemed like a memorable show. “In Blood – Devour This Sanctity” got me into BELPHEGOR so good; with a great introduction to destroy North America, and some fast guitar sounds with ear-penetrating drums I was already in the mood to sacrifice any one-hit-wonder artist for the sake of metal.
From their latest album Conjuring the Dead, “Gasmask Terror” kept the destruction going on, followed by “Black Winged Torment” from the same disc. Both songs are beautiful to listen to. I mean point-all-your-fingers-to-the-sky beautiful.
“Lucifer Incestus” started to turn things a bit more like an ideal early 1980’s horror movie. I looked around and was afraid some of my buddies were already being possessed by the sound of BELPHEGOR, but everything seemed to be a normal part of their ritual. “Conjuring the Dead” was definitely a song that I had heard before somewhere. With a heavy as hell pace, I decided I need to have BELPHEGOR become part of my life.
The show had been great so far, and it felt like an eternity of played music for everyone there. “Bondage Goat Zombie” was another crushing track live and I also knew this one from an old compilation of songs that I acquired so many years ago.
When the time finally arrived to close an awesome first-time experience. “Bleeding Salvation” pleasantly tortured everybody at the venue, including the people at the bar that had never listened to metal before and were trying to relax from a stressful week. Gas Monkey slowly turned into the darkest place in the entire DFW area and I was just there, standing with a sadistic smile on my face and delighted eyes from seeing this performance. After all this, if you are ever lucky enough to have BELPHEGOR in your town, do yourself a favor and go pray to their show as they command. You’ll have a great time!
Now it was time for KATAKLYSM to take over the stage. This was my third time seeing them, and I can only remember that each time has been better over the years.
This is definitely a band that you have to check out live, because they make sure that the essential differentiation factor between live and recorded music is widely noticeable. “If I Was God…I’d Burn It All” started the impact between bodies at the venue. This is a great song to listen to!
The group recently released a new album called Of Ghosts and Gods and the band decided to release one music video for each song! Needless to say, the record is amazing. The songs taken out from this release included “The Black Sheep”, “Thy Serpents Tongue”, “Hate Spirit”, and “Soul Destroyer”. If you have your doubts, pick up the album right now and regret not going to any stop from this tour if you didn’t have the chance.
A few other songs played during the first half of their set included “As I Slither”, “At the Edge of the World” (one of my favorites to play at any time!), and “The Ambassador of Pain”. These are fairly new from the band’s catalogue, but they also decided to go back a decade ago and slam the whole place with “Illuminati”. These Canadian metalheads didn’t let the people stop moving and definitely were bringing another killer show to remember. I’ve been listening to KATAKLYSM for a solid five years and I felt like I knew the band since their inception.
“Like Animals” and “Like Angels Weeping (The Dark)” made me lose my mind once again during the show. Nobody cared if it was a Wednesday night, it looked like the people attending the event were having their show of the year.
All the bands definitely deserved to have everyone banging their heads with their horns up awaiting the apocalypse. With the set coming to a close end, “In shadows and Dust” caused a really hard breakdown among the concertgoers only to reach their climax with KATAKLYSM’S classic “Crippled and Broken”.
I can safely say that this tour was a great one, regardless of the rain in the open section from the venue. KATAKLYSM and BELPHEGOR exceeded my expectations BY FAR, and I’m so glad I spent some of my energy at this show to remember it forever. With another year coming to an end, save some bucks and go listen to live music, support your artists and blast every single day of your valuable life. Sí!
LIVE WORDS: THE ALCALDE
LIVE PHOTOS: DELISA MCMURRAY PHOTOGRAPHY