Deicide lay waste to the twelfth sweat soaked London Deathfest

London Deathfest 2011 review

published: Fri 1st Jul 2011

Hour of Penance

Saturday 25th June 2011
The Underworld, Camden, London, England MAP
unknown
last updated: Thu 9th Jun 2011

Now in its twelfth year of existence, the annual London Deathfest returns to its home at the Underworld, entirely sold out. Tickets are sold outside for up to £50, £30 more than face value. So why the popularity? U.S. death metal veterans Deicide are back in the UK again and haven’t cancelled as they usually do.

Adorned in attire not readily associated with extreme metal (Hannibal lector mask, a sweater vest and a waistcoat) London's own Basement Torture Killings are fun to ogle. Spewing violent death metal/grindcore, the quartet goes down a storm with the audience. With brutality still on the menu, Amputated evoke the first mosh pit of the day. Their gore-drenched slam death metal is rhythmically crunchy as they rampage through material from both of their albums. Although deficient in variation, the amount of movement from the sweaty crowd should make the band proud.

All the way from Australia are The Amenta. They combine death metal with the terror-inducing atmosphere of heavy industrial music. The music is completely relentless with clinical speedy drumming and an austere stage presence. Although musically they stick out the most on this festival line up and are relatively unknown, it is safe to say that The Amenta won over a new wave of fans tonight.
Hour of Penance
Following their lead is Hour of Penance with anti-Christian brutal death metal in the vein of Behemoth but with more technical prowess and more defined melodies. These Italians are frenetic with generous tempo changes that permit the listener (and most probably the drummer) to catch their breath. Despite the dynamic nature of their metal, it did get a little tiresome towards the end of the set. With little variation and constant aural bludgeoning, Hour of Penance need to offer a little more to make themselves stand out in the modern death metal world.

No stranger to these shores, Belphegor take the Underworld's stage to offer more sado-sexual blasphemies with their seasoned black/death metal. Despite the strong nature of their music, their live show is almost too straight-forward. The setlist is largely predictable with familiars including 'Lucifer Insectus', 'Belphegor – Hell's Ambassador' and 'Justine: Soaked in Blood' alongside new prime cuts from the elementary 'Blood Magick Necromance' release. However, despite this repetition, the band look devoted to the performance with a consistent level of enthusiasm. The audience is most receptive to closer 'Bondage Goat Zombie'. If it isn’t broke, don’t fix it!

Hour of Penance
Finally, headliners Deicide appear to a sweating Underworld and it is evident from the temperature alone that the show is entirely sold out. The four-piece begin to hack through a set that intelligently covers most of their classic songs alongside a decent portion of new material. Naturally, selections such as 'Dead By Dawn', 'Lunatic of God's Creation', 'Kill the Christian' and 'Serpents of the Light' secure greater ovations than songs from the new album 'To Hell with God', like 'Hang in Agony Until You're Dead' and 'How Can You Call Yourself a God'. Mosh pits and headbanging are in full flow throughout the entirety of the set but despite the notoriety of vocalist Glen Benton, the band's stage presence feels a little tame. Nonetheless, musically Deicide are on point and pull of a strong show but an encore would have been nice.
review by: Elena Francis

Saturday 25th June 2011
The Underworld, Camden, London, England MAP
unknown
last updated: Thu 9th Jun 2011


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