No mercy was shown, no prisoners taken, as shirts, shoes, bottles, and bodies were propelled across The Tivoli Theatre in Dublin as Sepultura made a triumphant return to the Emerald Isle in support of their latest album, 2017’s ‘Machine Messiah.’ Anything not nailed down risked being physically catapulted across the crowd, including a crowd surfer with an itch only fire could scratch. All in all, it was the perfect way to spend a quiet night in Dublin.
Support came first from Fit For An Autopsy, who made their Irish debut a successful one, appealing to the political side of the audience between songs. Goatwhore, with their energetic and extreme thrashing, favoured the party approach instead, raising a drink to, and with, the Irish crowd. A memorably solid set delivered by frontman Ben Falgoust, despite being in cast and crutches. Falgoust made no excuses, or throne of guitars to sit on, choosing to simply perch himself upon a single flight case while he delivered a great performance. Bringing the support act bill to a close, German technical death metallers, Obscura, went from strength to strength during their short time on stage.[metalwani_content_ad]
With some technical issues taking longer to resolve than some would have liked, the sold out crowd grew impatient and restless. Which only added to the pure chaos unleashed as Sepultura took to the stage, kicking off their near twenty song set with a couple of back to back tracks from their new album. “I Am The Enemy” and “Phantom Self” saw shirts ripped from chests, water bottles fly, and plastic beer cups soar, but only after all contents had been consumed first. This is Dublin after all!
A spider web set highlighted many iconic moments woven alongside the newer material. “Resistant Parasites,” and title track, “Machine Messiah,” served to usher in a new era of Sepultura while tracks such as “Choke,” and “Against,” paid respect to singer Derrick Green’s twenty-year anniversary with the band. While Green engaged with the audience throughout, he briefly ceded the stage to the instrumental spectacle that was “Iceberg Dances,” a performance that saw drummer Eloy Casagrande, bassist Paulo Jr. and guitarist Andreas Kisser take home the gold with an exhilarating live rendition.
Located at the rear of the stage, an extended drum platform helped pave the way for an explosive encore. The tribal breakdown of “Ratamahatta” saw Green and Casagrande work a “call and response” sequence between their percussive drumming, while the crushing classic “Roots Bloody Roots” brought the Tivoli Theatre to its knees as the band bid their final farewell.
Still the biggest extreme metal band ever to come out of the Southern Hemisphere, Sepultura prevailed through their turbulent history and have come out stronger. A fact cemented in their live shows today. Refusing to fall into the empty stuff of myth and legend and phoning in performances, they continue to deliver a visceral experience on all fronts. Sepultura bring their A-Game every time, even it’s not too often crowd surfers light balls of fire mid surf. But it only confirms that you never know what you’re going to get at a Sepultura show, aside from a great performance, making it all the more reason to go and catch these legends in the flesh!