Magazine: Rock Hard / Germany
Report: Death / Pestilence / Viogression
Venue: The Ritz / Tampa

Written by: Frank Albrecht
Published: November 1991


The starting shot for the Death Worldtour was on November 9 near home, read: Tampa, Florida. And as often happens with the introductory show, some things go wrong. Like the truck with Death's equipement arriving to the venue at 8PM- by which time the concert should already have begun. It was long debated whether or not the show should be canceled, but eventually it was decided that it was best to go on. Therefore all bands had to play without a soundcheck this in a venue that because of the acoustic circumstances was difficult for a soundman anyway.

Anyway, Viogression was on stage around 10.30PM to welcome the 400 visitors with a 25 minute long cross section of their recently released debut Expound And Exhort. Colleguae Trojan once, in his LP-review, described the sound of Viogression (very striking) as sleep inducing. Although it has to be said that they sound live a bit tighter than on vinyl, but that doesn't conceal the lesser quality of the songs. Uninspired noise, and a dull stage performance, in short: a poor image and the fans didn't know what to do with Viogression either.

What Pestilence showed next was, compared to Viogression, like from another planet. Frontman Patrick Mameli grabbed the microphone and roared 'The Pest is back', and on it went. For 50 Minutes the Dutch, strengthened with Atheist's Tony Choy on bass (playing with Pestilence the entire tour), showed exactly what that meant. Besides some older tracks like 'Out Of The Body', 'Defy The Master' or 'Suspended Animation' a lot of new songs from the new album 'Testimony Of The Ancients' were played as well, 'Twisted Truth', 'Stigmatized' and 'Lost Souls'. The audience got completely crazy and it can be said that Pestilence walked all over them, nothing more and nothing less. Mainly because of the presentation of the band, especially the constant head banging of bassist Tony Choy, and of course because of Patrick Mameli, who as frontman both optically as for the singing hardly can be surpassed. His performance from A to Z was pure aggression and that's how it should be. Madness!

And then in the early hours Death came on at last.'Suicide Machine' was a perfect preamble, followed by 'Born Dead', 'Altering The Future', 'Left To Die', 'Denial Of Life', 'Living Monstrosity', 'Pull The Plug', 'Flattening Of Emotions', 'Zombie Ritual', 'Open Casket', 'Lack Of Comprehension' and of course 'Leprosy'. After that it was almost done, mainly because of the late hour and the numerous technical problems the band had. Despite it all Death wasn't put out and at least offered an appealing show, especially bassist Skott Carino with his energetic movements and his excellent bass playing was very convincing, but also Chuck Schuldiner seemed to have improved compared to earlier shows. He wasn't as listless as he used to be on stage, he even moved his head every now and then. But above all he communicated with the audience, something that used to be very rare. He appologized more than once for the delay and greeted some present musicians and left an overall likeable impression.

Summarizing it can be concluded that Pestilence, given the circumstances, came out best, but Death definitely didn't disappoint and in any case is ready for the X-mas festivals.

to gigs

Translated by KK/YK/MM for EmptyWords-Published on October 7 2003