Recently I hit Philly to catch the mighty Technical Death Metal band NILE live at Voltage Lounge. After a long and stressful day at work, this was gonna be just what I needed. As an added bonus, HATH was a last minute addition to this gig in support. They are an excellent band, so check them out if you haven’t already. Also on the bill was a band I knew very little of in TERRORIZER, but they surely seemed to get the crowd plenty riled up. Oh, and Bonus Bonus: I FINALLY got to meet and hang out with Natalie Camillo from Napalm Records, Katy Irizarry from Season of Mist, and Adrenaline PR’s Debbie Sellnow, a veritable Who’s Who in the world of rock and metal PR!!
I arrived not 20 seconds before HATH tore into their brief, but nonetheless fiery set. I get a ton of digital promos doing what I do, so it’s always great when I can get to the band’s merch table and buy a physical copy of latest release Of Rot and Ruin. It makes me feel good knowing that money’s going directly to the guys, all of whom couldn’t have been nicer, and they were kind enough to sign a CD for Mini-Amps. Guitarist/singer Frank Albanese and I chatted at length after their set and I couldn’t help but gush a little bit over how fantastic they were. It’s always the coolest, most super-chill dudes that play the angriest, darkest music, innit?
I didn’t see much of TERRORIZER, and that was nothing personal, I was just excited to talk to people I’ve only known online for years. But when the time came for NILE, it was on. “Sacrifice Unto Sebek” followed by “Defiling the Gates of Ishtar”, and “Kafir!” opened their set with a triple-whammy of head crushers, the last of which is a personal favorite track. This was my first time catching NILE, so hearing this one live was friggin’ awesome! One thing I really like was that all three guitarists/bassists (Karl Sanders, Brian Kingsland, and Brad Parris respectively) take lead vocals, often within the same song. That’s a dynamic I’m not exactly used to, and I also didn’t know who to watch, they’re all so busy.
2015’s What Should Not Be Unearthed made the first of two appearances with “Call to Destruction” before newest album Vile Nilotic Rites was represented by “Long Shadows of Dread.” These two songs will stand alongside anything from NILE’S earlier works and they were placed perfectly in the setlist. “In the Name of Amun” was up next, and if you hadn’t noticed already, drummer George Kollias used his time here to remind everyone of two things: that he didn’t come to fuck around, and that he is without a doubt one of THE best drummers in all of Extreme Metal…FACT.
We hopped back to At the Gates of Sethu for “The Fiends Who Come to Steal the Magick of the Deceased” which worked an already feverish crowd into a frenzy. Then a double shot from the new disc appeared in “Vile Nilotic Rites” and my #1 “Snake Pit Mating Frenzy,” both of which made me very happy. Like I said in my record review, if you’re not ready to throw things through a window after hearing it, you’re dead inside. This was definitely a show highlight for me, as was them pulling out “The Howling of the Jinn” from inside the Wayback machine. Following that up with the slow potboiler “Sarcophagus” was a nice touch as well.
“4th Arra of Dagon” is right up there with “Kafir!” as far as favorites off Those Whom the Gods Detest go, and of course we couldn’t end things without “Black Seeds of Vengeance’ from 2000’s album of the same name. All in all this was a great night. Got to see some amazing bands, got to meet the ladies who make the PR/Management wheels turn, and enjoyed a couple of Citywides. I also got Mini-Amps’ HATH CD signed (thanks, guys!) and finally added a NILE tour shirt to my collection. The fact that all of this took place at Voltage Lounge is just the icing on the cake as it’s one of my absolute favorite venues in Philly. Live Metal music is King, and nights like this only prove why. You must catch this tour, and you can find the remaining dates HERE
LIVE IMAGES: PRICE STEVENSON IV
LIVE WORDS: THE MAESTRO