Trey Williams, drummer for Dying Fetus, was my first ever metal interview, so besides being an awesome old school death metal band, they hold a special place in my heart, and I see them every time they come to Portland.
As the second oldest old-school death metal band on the bill, Dying Fetus, pummeled Portland, Oregon just as you’d expect: Heavy, groovy…with a side of gore. Dying Fetus, still touring on “Wrong One To Fuck With,” came back to Portland with Incantation on this co-headline tour dubbed, the “Contamination Tour,” and on this night, they would be the headliner.
I arrived to the venue just in time, but found that so had everyone else. It’s always a heavy decision to decide if you want to be up front to see the band and get moshed to death, or to stand back at a comfortable pace and enjoy John, Trey, and Sean. I held back on this night because I came straight from work and had nice girly shoes on.
Up first was Portland’s own crust meal band, Why Won’t You Die. Being very new to the scene (2014) they held the coveted opening spot with ease.
The band I was most excited to see, Genocide Pact, was up next. Hailing from Washington, DC, they stole the show in my opinion. I had read great things about them, and, upon the advice of a trusted metal elitist, they lived up to their reputation for delivering a dose of stripped-down raw death metal. Not only did they perform well, but guitarist Tim Mullaney won my heart over when I read a quote from him that clearly showed he knew his place in the scene, and had respect for the genre. He said, “Were all guests in the house of death metal bands that came before us.”
Sitting in a position that would make anyone nervous, Gatecreeper, donned the stage prior to Incantation. Similar in style and rawness to Genocide Pact, Gatecreeper kept the pace set by the previous two bands, and proved unequivocally why they landed this tour. Fast, frantic, and swift, Gatecreeper will likely be around for a long time.
John McEntee’s Incantation wins the prize for longevity, having served the genre for nearly 30 years. Still exciting to see, I always feel transported to another dimension when they play. McEntee’s voice is unique, and their style, while fitting in the genre, is somehow different. On this night they put on a great performance…just like they always do.
Dying Fetus never disappoint me. Somehow the brutalness is pleasing to the ear, and I’m always amazed at how much sound comes out of just three. After seeing them 10 times live, I still cannot make out one single word they sing, however, their music speaks directly to me sans words. They seem to never change, always technically great, always looking like they still like what they do, and always giving you that smile when they see you. “Last One To Fuck With” was a top-notch release; I’m hoping we see something new in 2019 (and see them back in Portland, Oregon).