Thursday, June 19, 2014

Concert Review: WHITEHORSE, WAR MASTER, VULGAARI, and PESTIFERE in Minneapolis

Whitehorse, War Master, Vulgaari, Pestifere
Thursday, May 15, 2014
Triple Rock Social Club, Minneapolis, MN

Click on any of the pictures to see more photos of each respective band.

It seemed like a miracle to arrive early enough to a show to catch the local bands, and I’m sure glad I did. Pestifere from Minneapolis plays a more melodic style of black metal whose complexity and maturity took me by surprise. The band is currently mixing their first full album’s worth of material for release, so keep an eye out for this great, promising band.

Rising doom/sludge band from Minneapolis Vulgaari took the stage next, and proceeded to crush the growing crowd with a nice selection of tracks from their debut album. While it was a little disappointing that no new songs were debuted, hearing favorites such as “Lies” is always welcome. Although Vulgaari’s three-guitar attack may seem like overkill, you really can distinguish all three guitarists (Brent Hedtke, Todd Haug, and Zack Kinsey, who also handles vocals) playing distinct riffs that are mesmerizingly layered upon one another.

Houston’s War Master then stole the show with a frenzied, manic performance of their Bolt Thrower-inspired death metal. Although their music may lack some originality, War Master makes up for it with an energetic live show that proves these guys are the real deal. Vocalist Rahi had the crowd laughing between songs with his offbeat, growling banter, and even brandished a sword while chugging beers during part of the set. The band has a West Coast tour lined up in July, culminating in an appearance at the 2014 Grindcore Festival in Los Angeles on July 12, so don’t miss War Master if they play near you.

The crowd seemed drained following War Master, and Australia’s Whitehorse just couldn’t capture what energy the audience had left. Out to support the new Raised Into Darkness album, their slow, droning dirges left me bored. The band was putting their all into it with bear-like vocalist Peter Hyde bellowing from the depths of his imposing girth, but it wasn't enough to inspire much beyond grudging respect.

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