Gig Review: Obituary @ Lion Arts Factory, Adelaide
Support: Truth Corroded and Freedom Of Fear
Date: Tuesday 14th January 2019
Venue: Lion Arts Factory, Adelaide
Review by Will Oakeshott
“It’s never too late to be great.” - Jordan Burroughs, Olympic wrestling and world champion.
Utilising this quote from a champion Olympic athlete could be interpreted as slightly abnormal in the context of a review for a metal show, truthfully a statement from a WWE wrestler would have been far more suiting; however, there is method to this madness. Originally the Australian tour schedule for the prodigious Floridian death metal outfit Obituary did not include Adelaide, a sadly common occurrence. But due to successful ticket sales and an opening in the itinerary, the capital of South Australia fortunately became a LATE addition to the tour - without revealing too much, Mr. Burroughs’ aforementioned statement rang very true on this heated evening.
Local melodic tech death metal quintet Freedom Of Fear had the distinct pleasure of opening the night’s event and although this honour was obviously a dream-come-true scenario for the band, there was no possibility of the five-piece playing as the “minor” group. FOF made Lion Arts Factory THEIR home as soon as they hit the stage, fulfilling their fanbase’s adoration for them and converting those who were experiencing the outfit for the first time. Featuring songs from their astounding debut full-length ’Nocturnal Gates’ which showcases impressive influences from Gates Of Ishtar and early At The Gates - the real high point though is the FOF’s experimental nature with math-metal and black metal passages. The jazz trumpet incorporation on The Consciousness Of Misery is spellbinding, not actually performed by a musician live during this set, but a backing track was used and still had an overwhelming impact - this then switched to tones of brutality that have Freedom Of Fear at understandable global recognition. Extra credit to front-woman Jade Monserrat whose demonic voice and witchy elegance onstage was devastatingly hypnotic.
Having Adelaide’s Truth Corroded as the main support seemed more than practical, it was basically necessary. The quintet have honed and bestowed their brand of striking thrash death metal for over two decades and accumulated devoted followers worldwide deservedly. The five-piece have performed and released their powerful heavy music throughout the world, but there is no denying that TC are happiest and at their best playing in their hometown. There is an undeniable affirmation when they take to the stage, the energy is substantial and a love is felt from the five-piece and the audience that is beyond infectious - pride does not even begin to describe it. Met with some technical difficulties, Truth Corroded valiantly powered through an intoxicating set featuring songs from the majority of their expansive discography and it was simply "a headbanger’s delight". To The Carnal Earth, Open Eyes And Willing Hands, Decimate and Victims Left Lepers were the highlights but truthfully, these purveyors of Australian death metal will consistently bring smiles to faces and horns in the air, especially at their home.
For over 30 years Florida’s Obituary have bolstered the death metal genre and carved out an identity and niche that cannot be vanquished and thankfully at Lion Arts Factory on this suitably summery evening (Florida has a tropical climate), the five-piece were here to justify why they are so admired. The cheer from the near-capacity crowd when Donald Tardy (Drums), Kenny Andrews (Guitar), Trevor Peres (Guitar) and Terry Butler (Bass) was thundering and vigorous which in retrospect is the exact technique Obituary used to shatter the venue on this evening. The pummelling instrumental introduction was a perfect "march-on” track for beloved vocalist John Tardy who had a gutsy groove with his presence that he superbly maintained throughout the entire evening, his threatening and trademark snarl almost didn’t fit his elated persona, nor the band’s upbeat aura - the songs from the worshipped ‘Cause Of Death’ album however (which was performed in full), screamed a different imposing version when in full flight.
Chopped In Half was electrifying, especially with drummer Donald Tardy’s vitality; Cause Of Death was beyond memorable and overpowering and the closer Turned Inside Out left Adelaide sensationally stunned but thirsty and thirsting for more. An encore followed featuring: I’m In Pain, A Dying World and Slowly We Rot, which honestly was the whipped cream atop the key lime pie; however, the most magnetic aspect about the band Obituary is just how humble, joyful and thankful these five men are to play their music for people who are infatuated with their brand of heavy metal. Crowd surfers of all ages (including kids) thanked the band with their mosh-pit spirit and to be frank, sharing drinks with Obituary on this evening will have a Lasting Presence for years to come.