Like many bands, Suffocation is touring some of the major metal festivals in Europe this summer, like many summers before. But to fill in the gaps between festivals they also do some club gigs. The only Dutch gig this year was in Eindhoven. So to Eindhoven I went.
The opening act were the Sisters of Suffocation – as per request of Suffocation. An all-female death metal band from Eindhoven. Nice gimmick, but can they play? Well, it’s not bad. The rhythm guitar and bass are quite solid and so are generally the drums. The vocals are a bit so-so. The grunts are okay, the more high-pitched vocals less so. The girly background vocals are horrible, although not too frequent. Drum fills are a bit are a bit minimalistic and quite basic. The guitar leads can use a lot of improvement, as they are quite weak.
The songs are not bad mostly, but rather standard death metal with some modern touches. Not bad, but room for improvement.
Then Suffocation. It seems that the gig in Belgium a couple of days before was only about half an hour long, which would have been quite a disappointment. A glance at the set list, as it was taped to the stage, was indicative of a full set. Oh and they have a new drummer – again, and a new guest singer, and a new second guitarist. Never mind. They opened with Thrones of Blood and Pierced From Within. Most of the set would consist of older, classic songs, with a few songs thrown in from their newest album. Only Entrails of You was a newer song. The band was blisteringly tight – as always, but I wasn’t all that impressed by the new drummer, particularly when compared to some of his predecessors, like Kevin Talley, Mike Smith or Dave Culross. It seemed to be missing the power and sheer brutality of the former, and particular the “swing” of Mike Smith. All in all a very good gig tho.