MAY 16th 2018

Review By: Metal Mom
Photos by: Char Tupper

Slayer, a once in a lifetime, legendary band from the 80's, is doing their final tour. That being said, look at the lineup they are closing out their career with, Lamb of God, Anthrax, Behemoth and Testament. This is one hell of a line-up. Tonight’s show in Vancouver is at the Pacific Coliseum, and sold out weeks in advance, which doesn’t happen often here in these parts, so you know this tour, is going to be a heavy hitter. 

Seems strange to be seeing Slayer for the last time, you get use to all the “SLAYYYYER” at concerts, and Im sure it will continue past the band’s legacy, but it will never be quite the same without Slayer in the world. This was a show, when it was announced that I knew we had to cover, no question.

So first up tonight is TESTAMENT, who got the crowd rattled up to start the evening. Doors were pretty early, but that being said, the arena filled up quick, no one was missing any of the bands tonight.  Seats being full, I still managed to find a seat and watch from a distance. Which is kind of a safe place to be, Testament is a pretty strong “mosh pit” kind of performance, and I wasn’t looking for a pit tonight. Looking at the crowd you could tell everyone was already warmed up from dancing, screaming, moshing, horns held high, drinks, you name it. If thrash is what you want, then it is what you’re going to get from these guys. They never disappoint their fans, consistent energy mixed with smiles and fun between each other on stage, but also interaction with their fans, which isn’t all that common, but nice to see. Make sure to get to your show early to catch Testament !

Now, next is my all time favourite band, and I sat there wondering do I dare go up front, BEHEMOTH can bring out the brutality in some, but my favourite band, I was going to try. Well I made it, front and centre, which I was quite happy (and surprised) about that. In fact, this crowd was amazing, there was a little spot, I asked the fellow, “are you going to stand there?”, he said “no, go ahead” , so I took advantage of the generosity. The crowd all around was pretty good about letting others in to see their favourites, then switch around for the next, it was nice to see this, since most shows, its first come, first serve. I was so excited to be right up there and anxious to see them play, they always kick ass, even if it is only for 35 minutes. Never long enough in my opinion. Well lights dimmed, and they all entered the stage, everyone around me was so excited, horns high, all screaming (yep, me too), and another flawless set, thrill of the night was getting to hear one of their new songs “Wolves Ov Siberia” from their upcoming new album due out late 2018. From the sounds of this track alone, I am anxiously awaiting their new album, it is going to blow people away, I can guarantee it. Excellent song. They bring something different that all the other bands on this bill, one, they are not thrash, and they have stage presence which means you can’t take your eyes off them. For me, they were the ones that were my headliners of the night. I love the fact that they have everything down, giving 150% to us, creating something that is different from others. BEHEMOTH conquered all tonight. Come back soon, we can never get enough.

Next is ANTHRAX, and the night goes back to thrash. However, the floor and seats were full, the only thing, it also brought out the annoying drunks that slammed into you whether you were on the floor or not. That was my que to move up to where there were selling merch. Safer place to stand, not get bashed around by the heavy moshers. Anthrax always gives a lot of presence on stage with jumping, head banging, and Joey always has fun interacting with the crowd, in fact, he even interacted with one of the photographer’s in the photo pit, usually photographers try to remain out of the lime light, not this time. They put on an excellent performance full of non-stop energy and thrash, just what everyone was waiting for.

LAMB OF GOD’s turn to hit the stage. For me, I found a spot to watch, because as you know Randy has the energy of the energizer bunny, non-stop. It is always amazing to watch and see him jump around, there must be a pool of sweat on that stage after his performance. Plus, they are not thrash, just pure American Metal, and for some reason, these guys always catch my attention, their performance was flawless, full of energy, each one of them, they have been around for awhile now and have perfected their sound. The people up where I was, were headbanging, screaming, horns high, you don’t need to be in the pit for Lamb of God, to see how much of an impact this band has on the metal scene, over the years they have grown so much, and my kids started seeing the band when they played smaller venues around town, now, they are large enough to fill arenas! That is amazing, especially in this industry today and how it’s changed. Lamb of God is one hell of a force to reckon with. Lamb of God might just be the perfect band to fill Slayer’s spot once their gone.

Okay, last band, the headliner, the long reigning titans of thrash, here for the very last time, SLAYER. you know, the thrash metal band that has been around for 37 years. We all heard it … SLAAAAAAYER, when they came on stage, it happens at all their shows, and even ones they are not playing. Lots of fire(which is always cool),  lots of lights, and a set full of classics like “Repentless”, “Hell Awaits”, “Angel of Death”, and countless others we all know and grew up with in the metal scene. I won’t list all 19 of them, but my 2 favourites, “Seasons in the Abyss”, and “Raining Blood” were played. The night was full of fast, brutal riffs, sledgehammer drums blasts, and well, fast beats, this is what you got tonight, and Im sure not a single person complained. Mosh pits of course were huge, you can’t miss the “last mosh pit of Slayer”, it would be unheard of. I am sure a lot of people were very sore the next day, but the aches are worth it, to be able to see one of metal’s legends, last show in our area. This was a true, proper “Slayer style” send off for one of metal’s Big Four, they will be missed.