The tour detonated in Los Angeles on March 29th at the Key Club, neatly situated amongst the glitz and glamour of the Sunset Strip (and about a half block from the Rainbow Room, currently one of Lemmy’s favorite hangouts according to various sources).
HateI must say that I greatly prefer Hate’s early material when Florida-style death metal was the musical emphasis, as opposed to their very polished, blackened approach. Never an original band to begin with, Hate were able to put together a few good albums early in their discography, although labels of “Deicide clone” were tossed about rather liberally. Lately, Hate have shifted gears into blackened death metal territory, but still seem to be unable to shake their “clone” status as countrymen Behemoth seem to be the band for Hate to emulate.
Unoriginality aside, Hate have proved their mettle through hard work and a desire to tour endlessly, resulting in landing a few support slots for major death and black metal acts for various treks through America. Although the band stuck to newer material (as expected), Hate delivered a taut performance with energy, enthusiasm, and power. Although initially slow to respond, the L.A. crowd warmed to the set soon enough and gave Hate a rousing round of applause at the conclusion of their half hour set.
The Epigenesis is a great album, but very polished and clean. The sterile production really wasn’t all that noticeable to me until I saw the band perform the songs live, and was able to make a comparison. The guitars from Moloch and frontman Ashmedi ebbed and flowed with a very organic quality as the riffs seemed to almost fall from the guitars. The slight lack of polish really worked for me in a live setting, and Melechesh easily delivered the best performance of the night.
Excellent stage presence and energy combined with a monstrous set list concentrating upon the last two albums soon sent the L.A. crowd into a frenzy. Set highlights include “Rebirth Of The Nemesis,” “Ghouls Of Nineveh,” and an unbelievable rendition of “Triangular Tattvic Fire.” Ashmedi was impressed by the band’s reception from the crowd, and gave his thanks and appreciation.
Rotting Christ’s powerful approach to riffs and sheer crunch made up for a general lack of speed, especially after the usually fast approach of Melechesh. The density of the band’s sound allowed Rotting Christ to thoroughly crush the crowd and close out the evening.