Bands – Withered/Wake/Mutilatred/Fell Ruin
Country of Origin – USA
Venue – Cellarmen’s
Date – March 28th, 2018
Cellarmen’s is an interesting venue. For one thing, they make mead, which probably means something to those of you who are not straightedge like me. It looked to me like maybe there’s usually more seating that what was visible tonight (based on tables and chairs stacked in the back that I noticed while interviewing Wake). The calendar on the wall showed a variety of different types of entertainment throughout the month, so perhaps a giant open floor is not the best for every event. I liked the venue, but I’m not sure I really got a feel for it on this visit. I suppose future trips are in order.
Up first were Detroit natives and dissonant black metal overlords Fell Ruin. For the second time in a week (after seeing them open for Primitive Man/Spectral Voice in Lansing), I was able to catch them live. Perhaps because of the size of the crowd (quite small) or perhaps due to back issues that vocalist Brian Sheehan has been fighting, the set tonight didn’t have the energy I’ve seen from them before. Even so, they were musically top notch were able to connect with those of us who were there.
Hailing from Toledo, Ohio, Mutilatred are nearly a Detroit band. The four piece gave a mammoth performance with a core of HM-2 death metal that expands beyond those boundaries. I’ve been aware of this band for a couple years now. I’ve liked their recorded work, but never had a chance to see them until tonight. Let me tell you, they bring the rage to the stage. They are a different animal live. Check them out the next time they are in your area.
It was pretty cool to talk to these guys both formally (video interview coming) and informally. As an Alberta-born transplanted Canadian, we had common ground to share, such as days spent in the West Edmonton Mall, that massive monolith to capitalism that features both a giant waterpark and an indoor amusement park, roller coaster and all. Since discovering them on Sowing the Seeds of a Worthless Tomorrow, I’ve been fairly obsessed with these deathgrind monsters from Calgary. Their set tonight was obliterating. I’m pretty sure some spinal cord injuries occurred. They were entirely abrasive and exceptionally in your face.
The surprise of the night for me was this Atlanta based blackened death metal quartet. I wasn’t sure what to expect as I had never previously gotten around to listening to them. To say I was pleasantly surprised would be an understatement. In a night of excellent to exceptional sets, Withered edged the rest to take top honors. The bleak abrasion of their sound meshed perfectly with the dark misery of their performance. Even technical difficulties couldn’t slow them down. I guess I have a new discography to explore.