When Sylosis are in town, Rock Sins will usually follow. However throw in death metal legends Decapitated and British newcomers The King Is Blind and the evenings’ appeal went from very interesting to mandatory attendance. James was duly dispatched to report on what unfolded.
The King is Blind (6) prove a more than adequate warmup act. Laying down thick slabs of riffs ‘The King is Blind’ are certainly still more at home in smaller venues with the size of the Ballroom robbing the riffs of some of their impact. A broken bass pedal doesn’t help either and breaks up a lot of the momentum of The King is Blind’s already short set. This is still not enough to stop tonight’s set being a success and The King is Blind more than do their job in warming up the crowd and doubtless convert a few more fans of their own with songs from latest release ‘Our Father’ sounding colossal.
Decapitated (8) remain one of the best metal bands on the planet. Focussing more on the latter day groove elements to their sound more than the claustrophobic death metal of ‘Nihility’ and ‘The Negation’ almost half the setlist is made up of songs from latest album ‘Blood Mantra.’ However, cuts like ‘Post-Organic,’ ‘Day 69’ and ‘Spheres of Madness’ still sound magnificent with a veritable riff storm. Vogg’s guitar playing also gains something live. Much like Pantera before them his riffs lock in perfectly with the drums creating an often hypnotic groove, while Pantera style licks seeing out songs like ‘Carnival is Forever’ work extremely well.
That some songs like ‘Lying and Weak’ are missed off is certainly disappointing but the set holds together a lot better with the same groove element present all the way. Certainly a big advantage compared to some bands where there can be jarring changes in style mid-set. Decapitated put their heads down and slam and groove their way through their hour long set.
Such an impressive performance must certainly be daunting to follow and, initially, Sylosis (7) struggle. Josh’s vocals are off-key and the songs just don’t quite connect. However, an early showing of ‘Teras’ and ‘Sands of Time’ – absent from their live shows for several years now turn things around.
The band have all improved in the past few years. Ali, now in the ranks of Sylosis for almost two years, has settled in excellently and has adapted his style well. Josh, fresh off a run of Arena dates and having supported Lamb of God across the United States on several tours over the past few years has developed into an excellent frontman. Although not quite containing the brash, bug-eyed fury of some he is still more than capable of whipping the crowd into a frenzy; as the colossal wall of death during ‘Stained Humanity’ proves.
Sylosis have improved in leaps and bounds as a live unit over the past few years and tonight proves they can more than hold their own against some of the giants of the genre; especially one as fearsome as prospect live as Decapitated. An excellent night of three of the best bands metal can offer in 2016.