Metal badasses Cattle Decapitation released their eighth studio album Death Atlas on November 29, 2019 to positive reviews. They wasted no time in announcing a tour in support of the album and what a package it was. Despite their intimidating name, Cattle Decapitation‘s songs protest the mistreatment and consumption of animals. They also cover subjects like the abuse of the environment, misanthropy, and the genocide of the human race. The band’s original lineup consisted of all vegetarians, but now only singer Travis Ryan and guitarist Josh Elmore remain. Throughout their career, Cattle Decapitation have proven themselves to also be some of the nicest guys around. One such incident was in 2018 when two Native American brothers were pulled from a Colorado State University tour by the police for being “too quiet” and wearing “dark clothing”. The band found out that one of the brother’s was wearing a Cattle Decapitation shirt and so offered them free guest list spots for life. This show would be declared as the Decibel Magazine Pre-party. Joining Cattle Decapitation on tour was Atheist, Primitive Man, Author & Punisher, and Vitriol.
The venue was nicely packed as progressive Atheist prepared to take the stage. This show was special for Atheist because it was their first show in Los Angeles in twelve years. Since the band’s founding in 1984, vocalist Kelly Schaefer remains the only original member. For many fans in the audience, it was their first time seeing Atheist. The lights went out and Atheist made their way to the stage and started their show with On They Slay. Atheist showed their fast and technical playing which drove the audience wild and started moshing. Atheist was truly an energetic band and it was only proven over and over as they played many of their classics including Unholy War, Unquestionable Presence, Your Life’s Retribution, and I Deny. With a limited set time, Atheist made good use of it to make sure fans were enjoying themselves and they weren’t bored. To end their show, Atheist played their popular hit Piece of Time then left the stage making room for the headlining band of the night.
Cattle Decapitation were part of this year’s Summer Slaughter tour and are touring the USA again, but this time on their own headlining tour. Many Cattle Decapitation fans were in attendance as they wore merch from them to show their support. The lights went out once again and the still packed venue cheered as the intro track Anthropogenic: End Transmission played over the speakers. The members made their way to the stage with singer Travis Ryan being the last one. Cattle Decapitation stared their show with The Geocide, the opening track to the new album. Right away, Ryan unleashed his ear-piercing shrieks and deep guttural growls that gives Cattle Decapitation their signature sound. The fans went wild once again with moshing and even crowd surfers made an appearance. Cattle Decapitation have a powerful sound live and makes it impossible for anyone in attendance to sit still. Next, Cattle Decapitation went back to their 2012 landmark album Monolith of Inhumanity and performed A Living, Breathing Piece of Defecating Meat. For the third song, Cattle Decapitation went back to their previous 2015 album The Anthropocene Extinction and played, The Prophets of Loss. Three songs in and Cattle Decapitation was slaying Los Angeles with pure brutality. One of the best moments from the show was when Ryan dedicated a song to the people in the mosh pit and that song was none other than possibly their most famous song, Forced Gender Reassignment. Next, the intermission track The Great Dying II played which led to Bring Back the Plague which was Death Atlas’ second single. The show seemed to come to an end when Cattle Decapitation played the title track to their new album, Death Atlas. To date, it is their longest song clocking in at nine minutes and fourteen seconds. It is also perhaps their most beautifully written and played song. The first half of the song is a traditional Cattle Decapitation song, but then on the second half slows down to a more doom metal sound with Ryan doing clean vocals that almost give him a Peter Steele (Type-O Negative) vibe. The lyric, “And I count the days till we expire our ways. And I count the days till we expire for always” has to be one of the greatest lines that Cattle Decapitation has ever written and for that, makes it my personal favorite song from the new album. Cattle Decapitation finished the song, then left the stage. The fans didn’t seem ready to go home just yet and stayed put. After a brief break, Cattle Decapitation came back out to play some more. The first encore played was Manufactured Extinct. To end the show, Cattle Decapitation played another one of their best songs, Your Disposal. The fans went wild with moshing and plenty of head banging and horns were seen. The song ended and Cattle Decapitation thanked Los Angeles which they considered to be their home away from home (San Diego, CA), then left the stage for the final time.