Review: Live in L.A.
Magazine: Metal Rules / Canada
Written by: Evil G
Published: October 2001

Chuck Schuldiner is without doubt a death metal pioneer. He has consistently expanded the boundaries of the genre while never giving up and ounce of integrality. For me, Death has always been a top-notch band and one that I have been a fan of since I first heard the band in 1991 with the release of the monumental album HUMAN. So here I am 10 years later reflecting back upon a band's career that has touched and influenced many. As everyone knows, Chuck was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer on his 31st birthday. Since the US healthcare system is fucked, especially for someone without healthcare insurance, Chuck turned to friends, family and fans for support. He is still fighting his battle with cancer to this very day. If you want more information on Chuck's current condition drop by the Death / Control Denied website at

To help Chuck's financial situation, his label decided to release the first ever Death live album - LIVE IN L.A.. The album was recorded at the legendary Whisky A Go Go in Los Angeles on Death's 1998 North American tour with Hammerfall. Backing up Chuck on this tour was Richard Christy (drums), Scott Clendenin (bass) and Shannon Hamm (guitar). The recording of this gig was never meant to be released to the world. As such it was a soundboard recording. That said, the recording is VERY good and I speak in all honestly here to tell you this is now one of my favorite live albums! The band sounds in top shape - raw, energetic, ripping, pure DEATH! Richard Christy's drumming is phenomenal and the leads are nailed. There is very little stage banter, I kind of like a bit more stage banter on a live album, but that's not crucial because it's the music that counts! I could not of picked a better song selection myself because the focus is on my favorite Death albums, namely: HUMAN (1991), INDIVIDUAL THOUGHT PATTERNS (1993), SYMBOLIC (1995) and the seventh and final Death studio album from 1998, THE SOUND OF PERSEVERANCE. The only song not on here that came to mind is "Lack of Comprehension." Not a big deal, this is still awesome stuff. I won't bother giving a description of the songs on here, all fans of extreme metal should already know it inside out! On the introduction of the last song, "Pull The Plug", Chuck announces that they have to cut out a few songs because they were running out of time, too bad!! Clocking in at just over 70mins, this is still and excellent live performance and one which was a long time in coming.

LIVE IN L.A. will be out this month (October 2001) on the 16th. Accompanying` this CD will be a DVD release of the same concert. I can't wait to get my hands on that one!!! Lets hope that this is not the last chapter in the career of the metal god Chuck Schuldiner. Hopefully he will persevere, Death will one day return and that his new band, Control Denied, will be kicking asses in the very near future! Long Live DEATH!

Evil G

5 out of


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EmptyWords-Published on October 8 2001