American death metal legends Morbid Angel, Swedish death metal legends Watain, and American death metal legends Incantation announced a tour that was meant for metalheads all across the USA. This is one of those times when death and black metal fans unite to cause chaos and rock out to some of metal’s best bands. Before the start of the tour, Watain was met with some trouble. Guitarist and founding member Pelle Forsberg was arrested and detained coming into the USA from his vacation in Mexico. After being treated unfairly by border patrol for a several days, he was ultimately banned from entering the USA for five years. It was a huge blow to Watain, but they did not back down from the tour. Watain had to adapt for the upcoming tour so bassist Alvaro Lillo switched to guitars and frontman Erik Danielsson switched to bass so it was a rare opportunity to see him on bass duties. Watain also got a hold of a session guitarist to fill in. Regardless of the setback, Watain carried on the tour and it was a brutal tour to witness. The Observatory in Santa Ana, California was all set for this night of brutal metal. Incantation was the first to go up and they were a great warm up setting the stage for the two remaining bands.
The stage was covered in traditional Watain garments which included tridents, logos, and animal bones. The lights went out and the packed venue went into a frenzy as Watain came out one by one with Danielsson being the last one and engaged in a ritual facing away from the audience. Once he finished, he introduced the opening song which is one of the band’s best songs, Sworn to the Dark. Right away, you can feel the evil and satanic music that Watain is known for. The stage was covered in red light most of the time to give the band a hellish look. The next song was Nuclear Alchemy and is the first single from their newest album Trident Wolf Eclipse which was released in 2018. Watain kept the evil atmosphere alive as they played satanic hymns like Reaping Death, Furor Diabolicus, and Malfeitor. With Watain being the support act, it was no surprise to see them have a short set which is a shame because they’re worth a full headlining set. To end their show, Watain performed On Horns Impaled. Once finished, Danielsson proudly held up one of the upside crosses displayed on stage. Who knows when Watain will return to the states, but hopefully it’s soon to give their American fans a proper headlining show.
Morbid Angel are one of the most influential death metal bands. They have been around since 1983 and have consistently released music. their newest release was their ninth studio album Kingdoms Disdained released in 2017. The lights went out once again as the fully packed venue cheered once again as Morbid Angel came out and started their show with Piles of Little Arms. Frontman Steve Tucker unleashed his deep guttural growls which drove the fans insane as they continued to mosh. Guitarist and founding member Trey Azagthoth has to be one of the greatest death metal guitarists as he displayed his unique guitar skills which included fast shredding and squealing. Morbid Angel kept the blasphemy alive as they played lots of their classics including Summoning Redemption, Blasphemy, Prayer of Hatred, and Rapture. Morbid Angel is a force to be reckoned with when it comes to their live performances and people that love to mosh and bang their heads will always have a song to do so. The show seemed to come to an end when they played Nothing Is Not. A powerful song that continued to drive the mosh pits crazy. Morbid Angel said their thanks, then left the stage. Not a bad way to spend Black Wednesday.