GIG REVIEW: HATCHET, BLACK FAST, GREEN DEATH Live at Frankie’s Inner City, Toledo, OH
Bay Area thrashers Hatchet brought their neck-snapping metal music to Frankie’s Inner City in Toledo with special guests Black Fast and Green Death, turning it into an intimate mid-week metal experience, featuring some of the best thrash in the states.This metal extravaganza kicked off with S.N.A.F.U. from Detroit, Michigan. The acronym stands for Situation Normal All Fucked Up and the situation got fucked up with savage and aggressive thrash boiling with hardcore passion. S.N.A.F.U. demonstrated a penchant for brutality and the small-but-growing crowd added fuel to the fire with encouraging cheers. It was great to see a band going balls-out right from start to finish.
Toledo natives Constricted jumped right into a marvelous set of metal music. The musicians in this band possess some serious chops and put them on display. Their sound had many of the elements you would want in a progressive metal band, including amazing guitar solos and intriguing time changes. Their entire set was tight and filled with catchy riffs and compelling song writing. While everyone in this band played superbly, the vocal performance of Ryan Mullins put them over the top. Keep an eye out for Constricted, as they play metal with a vengeance.
Green Death from Des Moines combines elements of thrash, death, and power metal into a delightful metal cocktail, which the crowd eagerly consumed. The band has been touring hard in support of their ‘Manufacturing Evil’ album that has been snapped up by EMP Records. Much of the set focused on tracks from the new album including a blistering rendition of “Gates of Hell” and the thrashing insanity of “Through the Eye”, however they did break out “Green Death” from their first album ‘The Deathening’. The crowd enjoyed every manic metal minute that Green Death could give them.
Up next were Black Fast from St. Louis, Missouri. From the first note, it was clear that this band had come to play hard and fast. The only moment of rest came when drummer Ross Burnett blew out his bass pedal. Aaron Akin (vocals/guitar) bantered with the crowd a bit to fill the void. Black Fast continued their set with a barrage of devastating riffs played with surgical precision. Included in the show was “I, Conspire” and “Starve”, which met with enthusiastic support from the audience. Black Fast are as much fun to watch as they are to listen to –get out and see them if you get the opportunity.
A darkened stage set the scene as the classical-inspired acoustic intro of “Where Time Cannot Exist” from Hatchet’s ‘Fear Beyond Lunacy‘ began to play. With the force of a hurricane, the band then erupted into the thrash anthem “Living In Extinction”. Faithful fans got close to the stage to join forces with the band in the intimate confines of Frankie’s. Hatchet played with furious intention as they tore into the epic “Fall from Grace”. The fretboard wizardry of Julz Ramos and Clayton Cagle was matched with the thunderous rhythms of drummer Ben Smith and bassist Devin Reiche, creating a cyclone of metal.
With terrible force and unbridled ardor Hatched played “Tearing into Hell”, “Vanishing Point”, and “The World Beyond”. The hearty cheers from the crowd were rewarded with a couple of encore tunes for the road. Hatchet has pulled together a frighteningly spectacular lineup of bands for this tour that will keep the fires of metal burning bright.