The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world

The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world
LIVE SLAYER Anthrax Kingdom of Sorrow Sydney 2013





Kingdom Of Sorrow

Big Top Luna Park


February 25th 2013




This show was the beginning of a week of shows in Sydney and Melbourne that I attended as part of the annual sidewave sideshows that a lot of the bands at the Soundwave Festival take part in. It's not too often that we get to see 2 legendary thrash bands back to back in the same gig so this definitely had high expectations. Not long after a very quick line to get inside the venue which was at the Big Top venue inside the famous Luna Park in Sydney, first band to come on stage was hardcore sideband Kingdom Of Sorrow. I say sideband because all the band members are from other very well known bands including Jamey Jasta from Hatebreed, Kirk Windstein of Down and Crowbar and Nick Bellmore from punk/thrashers Toxic Holocaust. Sometimes too many big names can ruin a band but in this case, it worked great. Kingdom Of Sorrow certaintly have the Hatebreed trademark sound but with a more melodic side and softer punches. That being said, they still pack a punch when needed and the crowd was certaintly warmed up by the end of their set!



Anthrax hit the stage half an hour later and while it was a short set, they gave it all they could. A few last minute changes in the band while on tour due to drummer Charlie Benante having some personal issues and guitarist Rob Caggiano leaving the band to focus on producing and to join Volbeat meant a few new, or should I say, old faces were thrown into the mix. In came Jon Donais from Shadows Fall on guitar and ex-Slayer and Testament drummer John Dette, who is also currently filling in on drums for Slayer ironically, to save the band. Dette was 100% on the ball for Anthrax, more than filling Benante's shoes and sounding better than ever before. It was great to see Joey Belladonna back in the band despite my preference for John Bush on vocals. Admittedly I was a little skeptical on whether Belladonna's voice was either still strong after all these years or even strong enough in a live show but I was proven wrong by Belladonna's spot on powerful vocals. It was mindblowing just how good he sounded, still hitting the notes, still throwing down as good as ever if not better. And his stage presence was hugely noted, jumping around everywhere and interacting with the crowd at every opportunity. If I didn't know any better, this looked like a young Anthrax just starting out. On top of the old classics like "Caught In A Mosh", "Indians" and "Madhouse", the band pulled out a couple of new tracks from the latest album "Worship Music" which was the first album with Joey Belladonna back on the vocals. It was considered a triumphant return for the band who have dealt with a lot of issues over the past 10 years and hearing it live for the first time, it sounded even better. It was heavier, it was louder and it was raw, as metal is intended to be. Before ending the show with "I Am The Law", a fitting tribute to fallen legends Ronnie James Dio and Dimebag Darrell with "In The End" and a great cover of an AC/DC classic "T.N.T." which the band recorded as part of their all covers album "Anthems" (due out later in 2013) helped make this one of the best shows of the year so far. And we still had Slayer to perform yet!



What else is there to say when a band like Slayer come to town and do their usual speed thrash metal show? As mentioned before, John Dette filled in on drums due to some legal dispute with Dave Lombardo and management which is unfortunate given Lombardo's talent which makes him the highlight of every Slayer show. But the show must go one and Dette did more than his fair share of making it work. His previous history with the band probably helps! Of course, Gary Holt is still filling in on guitar for Jeff Hanneman who has been out of action now for over 2 years due to his ongoing rehabilitation from a flesh eating disease. That being said, Gary is a better guitarist and makes Slayer sound a little tighter. Funnily enough, Kerry King sounded even better than usual at this show making this show one of the best performances Slayer have done in years. The usual tracks were played with a few gems thrown in for good measure including "Die By The Sword" and "Payback" but surpisingly no songs were played off the 1994 album "Divine Intervention" which Dette was a member of Slayer for during the tour for that album. The show finished with the always entertaining "Raining Blood" and there ended one hell of a show by some legendary bands.



by Andrew SchizoDeluxe