Live Reports   


Bands: Cannibal CorpseDying Fetus Obscura Evocation
City: Lyons (France)
Venue: Le Transbordeur
Date: 2009-10-13
Audience: around 400 people

Photos : Seb


Due to a very nice interview with the members of Obscura, ten minutes are all we’ll be able to see from the show of Evocation. The Swedes are highly professional and offer a mix between Entombed and Dark Tranquility. The sound is rather messy and makes it difficult to appreciate the guitar melodies. Anyway, the band should be discovered on CD and be seen live again – only in better conditions.


Cosmogenesis, Obscura’s latest opus, is one hell of a killer album – but will the band be as good on stage? The answer’s yes! The sound is as bad as it was for Evocation, but Steffen and Christian’s rhythmical performance is amazing. Luckily, the lead parts are slightly more audible, which makes it easier to fully appreciate the precision and cleanliness of both guitarists’ playing. Enough to make any wannabe-guitarist jealous!

Only one disappointment: Jeroen Paul Thesseling, the band’s bass player, a former member of Pestilence and a brilliant fretless bassist, is not playing tonight. However, his substitute, Jacob Schmidt, Defeated Sanity’s bass player, is a pro, despite the fact that he doesn’t play fretless – and that he’s barely audible. Behind his drums, Hannes Grossmann is ridiculously precise. What an incredible pleasure to see him play, especially since the sound is very advantageously mixed! The band will only play 30 minutes and focus mainly on their latest album (“Anticosmic Overload” and “Universe Momentum” sound particularly good on stage). Obscura are already confirmed for the 2010 installment of the Hellfest, so here’s a piece of advice: don’t miss them!

Dying Fetus

The three members of Dying Fetus come on stage to fix their instruments, and the audience can already hear a few super-fast notes and hyper-trigged drum beats. The intro rings out – it’s time for a series of deathgring songs! The musicians’ performances are impressive: on each side of the stage, John Gallagher (guitar) and Sean Beasley (bass) deliver highly technical riffs. Speaking of which, Sean doubles the guitar parts beautifully, with the characteristic use of tapping and sweeping plans. Brilliant – even more so since these two are also taking care of the vocal parts. John’s voice is close to the sound of an emptying sink, while Sean uses more guttural, death-oriented vocals.

A good set from our American friends!

So as not to be undone, Trey Williams gets off his seat between two blasts in order to warm up and urge the audience on – and the crowd responds easily. The audience has been on fire since the beginning of the set and clearly appreciates this outburst of brutality mixed with good humour. As far as the setlist is concerned, the crowd is treated to the always efficient “One Shot One Kill”, several older songs and a few tracks from the new album, Descend Into Depravity, among which the excellent “Shepherd’s Commandment”. The band seem very happy with their performance and thank the audience before leaving the stage clear for tonight’s big act: Cannibal.

Cannibal on stage!

The five members of Cannibal Corpse take over the stage, and the crowd already know what to expect: brutal death metal from one of the best representatives of the genre. It is literally impossible to miss the sheer charisma that George “Corpsegrinder” Fisher exudes, with his huge body standing right in the middle of the stage and his hair turning like a helicopter. Judging by the size of George’s neck, it seems to be a good bodybuilding exercise! The other musicians are also giving all they’ve got: Pat O’Brien delivers his riffs cheerfully while keeping his face hidden by his ever-moving hair. On the other side of the stage, Rob Barrett is more discreet but just as efficient, taking care of the rhythmic session when his partner handles the soli.

A brutal evening…

For his part, Alex Webster acts his usual self – meaning he’s huddled up over his bass and delivers highly technical plans with clear-sounding notes. A pity his instrument can’t be better heard over this avalanche of saturated guitars. Behind him, Paul Mazurkiewicz is also extremely groovy. ‘Cause that’s the secret of this band: making very fast songs with drum parts that sometimes slow down and leave some space to the melody for a few seconds. Only to let the music start again even faster, of course. The five Floridian musicians never falter, and the helicopters keep turning. On stage, Cannibal Corpse have a simple motto: energy.


And then there’s the impression that this is all about fun. This is probably due mainly to the band’s frontman, whose niceness never flagged for one moment over the years. The man was wandering about in the crowd during the previous bands’ shows, without balking at signing autographs or taking pictures. On stage, he never fails to introduce the songs before performing them – and will even take this opportunity to dedicate “Fucked With A Knife” to all the girls in the audience. Older songs like “I Cum Blood” are still played, and the band never hesitate to pick tracks from old albums (like “Butchered At Birth”) and more recent releases, like “Time To Kill Is Now”, a song taken from Kill. The latest album to date, Evisceration Plague, is obviously well represented, and they conclude with the always efficient “Hammer Smashed Face”, a real brutal death hymn.

In short, a very good show with one of the genre’s major bands as the main act. Yes, Cannibal Corpse indisputably deserve the reputation they built for themselves after all these years of intensive touring.

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