Death Ss, Demon and more at Gagarin 205 (2007)

Gagarin 205 (Athens, Greece)

Death Ss, Demon, Despise, Wrathblade
The occult and horror: DEATH SS may be it, in music terms. The second visit […]
By Grigoris Chronis
May 10, 2007

The occult and horror: DEATH SS may be it, in music terms. The second visit of the legendary Italian Metal masters in Athens, Greece did prove the above for one more time. Added by the majesty of New Wave Of British Heavy Metal heroes DEMON, this gig did seem a rather not-to-be-missed event on a viscous Thursday evening. After the gig was over - while trying to get sober enough to drive back home (hail Mooker!) - the plan was set straight: can you forgive yourself for making the wrong guess on who's playing what in our days? Can ya?...

Facts: i) Thursday is not a good day for working class heroes. ii) both bands had performed again in Athens the last 1 ? - 2 years. Thus, the 'crowd' quantity was more than disappointing. Entering the Gagarin205 Club - and having already missed Greek Epic metallers WRATHBLADE's performance - it was 'cult' Greek extreme Metal warriors DESPISE performing onstage in front of not more than 50 people. I used to love the band's late 80s Thrash stuff - a grand mix of SLAYER (Hell Awaits-meets-South Of Heaven era) and SEPULTURA (circa Schizophrenia-to-Arise) - but it now seems that the band (featuring a drum machine instead of a real drummer) has developed (or 'debauchered', you choose) its songwriting to some new groovy Metal paths. Imagine the likes of MACHINE HEAD filtered with post-Chaos A.D. ideals and lots of FEAR FACTORY back ups. Got it right, I assume? Hell what, you got the point. The sound was too loud, and - for such few spectators at the time - our ears bled with something not that familiar. Even if the band's (featuring an added singer) performance was explicit, if it's not your cup of tea then...hmmmm...

British legends DEMON included this appearance in their 'farewell' tour. I don't think this may be for real, since Dave Hill and Co. has a lot to offer to Rock_Metal music. The band's latest album - Better The Devil You Know - was a helluva surprise featuring some kick-ass British Hard 'n' Heavy stuff, plus there was no kind of epilogue for Hill as the setlist was over. A rather 'pressed' setlist, I need to comment, that - anyway - featured some wonderful tunes the band has penned the last 27(!) years. Night Of The Demon, Sign Of A Madman, Into The Nightmare, The Plague, Blackheath, Standing On The Edge f The World, Life On The Wire, Hurricane, a Blue Skies In Red Square_Commercial Dynamite medley and - last but not least - DEMON's 'brand' called Don't Break The Circle and One Helluva Night set the venue on fire and a total of -now gathered - 100-150 Metal maniacs did applauded a rather remarkable performance of the whole band. Dave Hill is a legend himself; calm but rather 'vivid' in his reaction with the audience, he had already 'won' over any disbeliever of DEMON's magic. The rest of the band - even if static enough - provided the beast landscape for Hill to expose his personality. And we agreed. It's a pity DEMON's performance was short enough...and the sound was rather mediocre, but not 'bad'.

Now summing it up to 200 heads, the 'cage' was set for the DEATH SS invasion. The band's latest The 7th Seal albums another 'up-to-date' approach for the band, using lots of industrial effects to its sole Metal music; you can accept something like this - even my old-school 'stuck' ears - since Steve Sylvester is rather efficient while creating music, using ingredients that will surely add to - but not replace - the act's classic songwriting. Hence, upon the quintet's entrance with Time To Kill humanity had already lost the battle. The underworld was awaiting for our souls and Sylvester did take care of our will to enjoy total obscurity. DEATH SS is a band that breathes live for 30 years now, (maybe) being the first Metal band dealing with horror (in all forms). Baphomet - one of the most memorable Metal tunes ever written - lit our tormented souls and Let The Sabbath Begin did guide us straight to hell. BLACK WIDOW, (70s) ALICE COOPER, COVEN, ATOMIC ROOSTER and (onstage) Gene Simmons would be proud of the stage revulsion DEATH SS provided us with. And,yes, the incurable lady was again shocking, using the cross in various ways while dressed rather sophistically...horns up!

In between of burning bibles or setting crosses on fire or throwing grails of blood into the arena, DEATH SS performed a rather so-and-so 'program', in terms of adding various post-1993 tunes to the setlist; a rather logical move, since the band is on tour for The 7th Seal promotion. Cursed Mama, Terror, Hi-Tech Jesus, Vampire, Heavy Demons, Lilith, Where Have You Gone? and a 3-4 songs off the band's two latest releases was enough to unveil warm blackness and spiritual sexuality. Yeap, all these is mystique and enter if you dare...
Few (again) people, good-but-not-great sound in general, great performance by both bands and a good deal of Metal charisma was the exchange for a rather reasonable price that evening. On the other hand, if the venue was packed the aura may not have been he same...The chosen few, maybe?

crossmenucross-circle linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram