Thanatos, 16 March 2019, Baroeg, Rotterdam

Another day, another gig. Thanatos were celebrating their 35 years anniversary in their home-town of Rotterdam. The Baroeg was already quite full when I arrived.

The first band of the evening was Graceless. A relatively new death metal band, playing rather slow old school death metal. It’s based around mostly a simple riff and straightforward structure. My main gripe with this band it that it lacks punch, particularly in the drums, that are way too basic and slow.

The next band was Soulburn. The band consists of half the members of Graceless nowadays as Remco was already the guitarist, and now their drummer joined as well since Bob Bagchus left. But musically it is quite different. The band started out as a continuation of Asphyx in the late 90s then disappeared only to resurface in 2014. Doom death is still the basis yet some black metal influences have crept in. Unfortunately they played nothing from the debut album, but the newer material is also very good. Lots of great riffs. And the drumming was quite solid too. Great gig.

The main event of course was Thanatos. The last couple of weeks Stefan has already outlined his plans in interviews. The gig starts with the current line-up. The good-old Dawn of the Dead is the opener, followed by a few tracks of the latest album. The band goes back in time with each song, and members from that period will appear on stage. The drummer previous too records was Yuri Rinkel, and they play two songs with him on the drums. For Angelic Encounters, Theo Van Eekelen plays the bass. Apparently Aad couldn’t make it. The debut album lineup is nearly complete with only drummer Remo missing. Ed and Erwin both play two songs. And actually quite well. They go even further back in time by playing two songs of the first demo. And even the guitarist from that period Remco de Maaijer plays two songs, Blind Obedience and Thanatos, the latter which was never played live before and actually sounded quite interesting. Stylistically quite different from what they normally play. The last few songs were played again by the current lineup. So a interesting one-off event for one of the longest running extreme metal acts in the world. And a really entertaining gig too.

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