We knew from the start that this was gonna be a special show. In Greece, Destruction played their last gig before the departure of Schmier (1989) and the first after the reunion (1999). It’ been ten years since their last visit in Athens (they played also in Chania Rock Festival 2014), so an opportunity like that couldn’t be missed.
I will omit the half-hour delay until the opening of the doors, while so many people were waiting outside in the cold. Situations like that are unfortunately well known here and we’ve got used to them. Amken came on stage in an almost empty venue, because many of the fans hadn’t arrive yet. I was looking forward for their show because their debut album “Theater Of The Absurd” impressed me. Having great mood and energy they showed that they are one of the best local thrash metal acts and the future belongs to them.
Setlist: Shattered Sanity, Theater Of The Absurd, Adrenaline Shot, D.A.P., Obedient Dogs, Zombie Pets, Soul’s Crypt
Next on stage, the veterans Acid Death who will release soon a new album. Unfortunately, I couldn’t attend the listening session where I was invited, but from what I read and from the new songs that they played it will be amazing. Very good show with excellent technique from all member. They performed flawlessly the demanding technical death/thrash metal material of them, with old, recent and new songs.
As for the headliners, what more can I say that hasn’t already been said. When you choose for opening a track that is one of the best and most recognizable and the rest of the show doesn’t have a weak moment, this shows your quality as a band. “Curse The Gods”, that unholy hymn, put us all in the mood that something devastating was coming our way because Destruction had many surprises for us. “Armageddonizer” is one of the best they have in their recent history, but the next three were simply amazing. “Tormentor”, “Nailed To The Cross” and “Mad Butcher” caused panic among the fans. The band was on fire, the voice of Schmier unaffected through the years, the riffs of (highly undervalued) Mike were awesome and the new member Randy Black on drums was a beast, also having a short drum solo.
Destruction, in my surprise, chose to focus on the 1984-1987 period from which we listened twelve songs while from the current decade only two. They have said that this was gonna be a special show and this wasn’t just words. For example, “Black Mass” has never been played before in Greece. And of course, the gigantic Schmier never stopped telling how he appreciates the Greek audience and how he missed playing here. Notable moment, before one song (I think it was “Black Mass”) he stopped the show for a few minutes because he noticed a guy who passed out. He didn’t continue until he has back to his feet. How can you not love this guy?
Setlist: Curse The Gods, Armageddonizer, Tormentor, Nailed To The Cross, Mad Butcher, Dethroned, Life Without Sense, Release From Agony, The Ritual, Eternal Ban, Total Desaster, Antichrist, Black Mass, Thrash Attack, The Butcher Strikes Back, Thrash Till Death, Bestial Invasion
The night came to a conclusion before I even realized it. Every band gave their best and, in the end, despite the delay, I had only but a smile on my face. But the highlight was of course the devastating performance of the butchers. We’ve missed them and I hope it won’t take another ten years to see them again. Thrash Till Death!
Photos: Peter Papapetros