GIG REVIEW: Slayer, Lamb Of God, Cannibal Corpse & Amon Amarth Live at DTE Energy Theatre, MI
With “Slayer” doing a full 360 around the earth they have finally landed for the last time in Clarkston Michigan. Bring along with them in this epic journey is metal giants “Lamb of God”, “Amon Amarth” and “Cannibal Corpse”. This will be their second time brutalizing the metro Detroit area on this “Final World Tour “that started in May of 2018. First stop was at Freedom Hill spring of last year and this time starting off the concert season at DTE normally reserved for the likes of Eddie Money, but there will be no tickets to paradise, but rather a day of Armageddon.
Starting the brigade, was “Cannibal Corpse” just ripping through a high octane set of pure fury and Madness. With the over the top gore and looney lyrics George “Corpsegrinder” Fisher and Co. headbanged, Moshed and riled up this wet and muddy Michigan crowed as the hill was covered in mud from the rain and the moshing going on. After 30 years of Death Metal, these guys still put on balls to the wall show. Moving on from the pure death metal to more of a Melodic Viking Death Metal “Amon Amarth” have been around since the early 90s breaking out in 2008 and never looking back. Singing about the mystical world of the Viking folklore, these fellas are merciless and technical as it gets. The furousity I’m seeing on stage Is flowing into the crowd fast as and the stage looks like you’re going on a voyage of the seventh sea and everybody in the theatre is ready to Sail. For me “Crack the Sky “was my favorite jam of their set, I’m also a huge Thor fan as well so that could be part of it. Go check them out as they are on a full Europe tour starting in June incredible to see live and in your face.
Next up is one of my favorite bands to see and that’s “Lamb of God” these guys are an adrenalin shot straight to your heart, a fist across your face and a metal rush of madness all at the same time. Complete professionals that have been kicking as a very long time. Hailing from Richmond Virginia these boys always come locked and loaded to every show. With a 9 Song set that starts with “Omerta” then you get “Ruin”d before “Walking with Me in Hell” all this as Randy, Mark, Chris, John, and Willie are losing their noodles on stage. Randy is hard to follow as he is everywhere all at once just a maniac of a frontman always headbanging and twirling that giant mound of Dreadlocks, Mark is locked in with the crowd and just giving the death stare with such intensity I believe he was possessing someone in the crowd. Lead songwriter and bada*s rhythm guitar player Willie Adler always just looks like he’s having a blast up there, basking in the fans loving and ferocious response to every note he has written, a wild feeling I’m sure. Forging the backbone of this behemoth of a band is Willie’s Brother Chris Adler on Drums and the man John Campbell on Bass. These two are perfectionist up there firing on all cylinders and keeping it all in order through songs like “Now You’ve Got Something to Die For”, “512”, and “Engage the Fear Machine”. It’s controlled chaos and you are just along for the ride. Closing out their intense set was “Blacken the Cursed Sun”, “Laid to Rest” and the best way to close out their set “Redneck”. This hard-hitting ripper is everything I love about “Lamb of God”. Go check these guys out anytime they come to town so worth it.
As people take a quick breather from such a powerful opener, you wouldn’t expect someone else to come out and top what Randy and the boys just did. But when you have been around as long as “Slayer” has been, and you’ve blown the roof off of almost every venue you have ever played. It’s not that hard I guess cause these guys did not disappoint. By this time of the night, Detroit was rainy, mud pit. Mudslides were forming on the hill people were sliding around everywhere. No one cared about any of it cause the biggest metal band around was about to blow up DTE for the last time. With a full 90-minute set that spanned their whole careers Slayers Final World Tour was underway. 20 songs packed in the middle of an all-out war on stage, as pyro, flames, and smoke were coming out of everywhere. I give these guys tons of credit for playing around such intense flames for most of the show its gotta be crazy hot up there. Starting off their set with 2005’s Title track “Repentless” you get a kick in the teeth right of the hop. Moving from there they amp it up with both Show No Mercy’s “Evil Has No Boundaries” and “World Painted Blood “off the album World Painted Blood. Full on carnage has begun as the hill at DTE is being ripped up with pure excitement from everyone in attendance. After warming us all up with a few tunes Tony blasted into “Postmortem”, “Hate Worldwide”, War Ensemble”, “Gemini “, “Disciple” and “Mandatory Suicide” before hitting the halfway mark with “Chemical Warfare”.
At most shows, people would be happy with what they got here and would have been happy to go home but with another 10 songs to go, they gave their fans every ounce of them one final time. The back half of their setlist is like an all-star list of songs that a generation grew up on. Pulling from 11 of their best albums with 20 songs we had a bunch of goodies still to enjoy once again. Kerry, Gary, Tony, and Paul were set to give us all a final farewell with classics “Payback”, “Temptation”, “Born of Fire” and 1990’s masterpiece “ Seasons in the Abyss”. I love the slow build up to start this live it gets everyone just on edge waiting to thrash out hard. Glad to have seen this one last time. “Hell Awaits”, “South of Heaven” and “Raining Blood” all together one after the other is insane, not to mention the stage show was incredible. Not sure how Paul sits at that drum kit as flames are shooting everywhere all around him, it’s gotta be insanely hot up there. Closing out the show they finished up with “Black Magic”, Seasons in the Abyss’s “Dead Skin Mask” and everyone’s favorite Slayer song and most iconic hit “Angel of Death”. You could see it in everyone’s face this was the Slayer show they wanted, and this is the Slayer Show they got. It was a perfect goodbye to the home of Rock and Roll. Slayer forever.