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Testament in Houston, TX

By A Headbanger, Do You Bang Head?
Saturday, March 31, 2007 @ 12:16 AM


At The Scout Bar

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Reviewed by Gorgor

Review in brief: Testament brought thrash back to Texas triumphantly.

The Gritty Details: The Scout Bar, located just south of Houston, is a stone's throw away from NASA and many well known acts have made it a stop over the years. March 28th was Testament's turn to lay waste to south TEXAS.

The five horsemen of thrash took to the stage at 10:30 and delivered a brutal set of classic tracks until midnight. I had a great time up front as ripping lead after ripping lead poured forth from the guitar of Alex Skolnick. That guy owns lead thrash guitar. I saw why many think he is one of the greatest living guitarists for myself that night. Chuck Billy's voice sounded great and enveloped the venue, which was packed to the rafters by hundreds of old-school metal fans. Eric Peterson held down the rhythm guitar capably and there were more than a few lick trade offs between him and Skolnick. A rather gaunt Greg Christian slapped the shit out of his bass and drum duties were handled by Nick Barker (formerly of Cradle of Filth, Dimmu Borgir and a shload of other bands).

They sounded as vibrant as they did 20 years ago and time and tumors have clearly not taken their toll on the band. When they come to your town, don't miss it. According to Chuck, a new Testament CD will be in our hands by the end of the year.

SETLIST:

THE PREACHER: After the lights went down and the smoke machines began to billow, five shadows made their way to the stage. A shriek emitted by the tallest figure announced the song and the night was underway!

THE NEW ORDER: Excellent soloing on this one. Skolnick was on stage right and I was pretty much right up front there. He held out his guitar at arms length and shredded superbly many times that night.

THE HAUNTING: Very cool how this song seems to emerge from the previous one. Chuck got the verses out too.

ELECTRIC CROWN: One of my favorite songs. I just wish they kept in the SIGNS OF CHAOS intro

DNR: A real surprise here, as this is one of the 'newer' songs. Fucking brutal and pulled off without a hitch.

SEVEN DAYS OF MAY: Not one they regularly perform!

PRACTICE WHAT YOU PREACH: "Houston, do you practice what you preach?" Fuck yeah, Chuck!!!

TRIAL BY FIRE: HEY!

INTO THE PIT: Immense! Dedicated by Chuck to the pit, that did not disappoint!

OVER THE WALL: The bouncers had a tough time hurling back crowdsurfers during this one. One guy made it on to the stage and was pulled off, very ungently, I might add.

THE LEGACY: An awesome ballad by a thrash band known for its ballads. The dozen or so metalchicks there probably really dug it.

ALONE IN THE DARK: Yes!

ENCORE: DISCIPLES OF THE WATCH: My favorite song. A great way to end the show. I staggered back to my car, ears ringing, neck aching.

Testament rules!

Some Notes about the Openers:

Helstar, local thrash legends opened for Testament. They put on an awesome 40 plus minutes. James Riviera's voice rang out like two decades ago and they did a bunch of classic cuts including Dracula's Castle, Face the Wicked Reign Evil, and a new song. A new CD and tour are slated for later this year.

Dirt (the real Dirt, not one of the other 20+ bands that have that name, as the vocalist/bassist assured us) preceded Helstar for 40 or so minutes. They debuted a new track Scarred For Life and they also have a new disc coming out soon. Tracks including Incarcerated and >Lost pummelled the shit out of us.

Vozz started things off and played songs reflecting their punk, hardcore, and reggae influences. The lead vocalist/guitarist's guitar kept going out of tune. The other guitarist said "AND THIS IS WHY YOU DON'T CHANGE OUR STRINGS BEFORE A GIG." A lot of screaming and they reminded me of Korn and the Deftones. Not bad for a bunch of youngsters.

In closing, beers were only $3.50 and you all should support your local scene!



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