Sunday nights are probably the best nights for metal shows in my opinion, as it energizes me for the upcoming week. But to contradict that statement, the end result of this particular show was me losing my voice and being really exhausted the next day from getting into the show. No regrets though.
It was a night of firsts for this Sunday night show featuring Hate Eternal and Goatwhore. It was my first time seeing Hate Eternal and it was their first night of the tour. Additionally, it was my friend Rob’s first time seeing Goatwhore. So just about everyone got a piece of the ‘first-time’ pie this night.
Since it was my first time seeing Hate Eternal, I really had no idea what to expect at all, and I was thoroughly impressed. Having listened to them since 2o02’s “King of All Kings,” I was well versed with them but didn’t expect such an energized performance. Erik Rutan declared early on in their set that Sunday 19th February was “doomsday” and “HOUSTON IS FUCKING DEAD!” Hate Eternal blew my doors opened as a first-timer, and judging from the crowd’s reactions, others were just as enthused. Rutan and bassist JJ Hrubovcak did an excellent job of working the crowd and moving from side to side, demanding mosh pits and pure insanity. Their set included a wide range of song from their releases, but concentrated mostly on their latest, “Phoenix Amongst the Ashes.” Of course, no show is complete without insane fans in the pit, screaming along and whipping the others in a frenzy. Houston is certainly no slouch in the Death Metal department when it comes to live shows.
Headlining the night was Goatwhore, who were fresh off a set of dates with Lock Up in the Northeastern United States, and guitarist Sammy Duet stated to the crowd that it felt good for them to be back in the South. Best yet was that Goatwhore are in furious pursuit of supporting their new album, “Blood for the Master.” If you have heard this album, then you’re well aware that Goatwhore certainly aren’t messing around, with a furious blast and in-your-face vocals not even one second into the album. The live show was no exception, as right out of the gate, they rip into “Collapse in Eternal Worth” and immediately backed up with “Provoking the Ritual of Death” from 2009’s “Carving Out the Eyes of God.” Frontman Ben Falgoust and crew don’t pull any punches and are all fully energized to reduce Houston to smoldering, blasphemous ashes.
Goatwhore’s set ran the gamut of their albums’ highpoints and left no stone unturned in their setlist, as older and newer fans both were served well. Perhaps one of the more interesting points of the night for me was seeing younger teenaged metalheads in the crowd rocking out. Sure, you’ll see the average group of 16 year olds, but 12 year olds was a new one on me. You can tell their minds were blown, not only from the show, but by hitting up singer Falgoust and guitarist Duet after the set for pictures and autographs, which they were happy to do. Just imagine being a 12 year old meeting Goatwhore…. who wouldn’t be excited?
Speaking with both Falgoust and Duet following the show, I was informed that Goatwhore will be quite busy for the next short while. After a break in April, they will hit the road in Europe with 3 Inches of Blood and Havok, head to Australia for a number of shows, then return to America during the summer to tear it up stateside again. So Europe, Australia, and the US are set for another punch in the face from Goatwhore, that this writer cannot wait for!
When asked to comment on the new album and upcoming tour dates, guitarist Sammy Duet said “One word: Satan!”
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