LIVE REVIEW: LAMB OF GOD, HQ NOV 1

After supporting Slipknot on a gigantic east coast tour playing in oversized arenas, Lamb Of God made their way down to Adelaide on their own to give Australia’s neglected son a personal headline performance at HQ on Nov 1. Who needs Slipknot anyway?

Opening the show was local thrash metal act Alkira. With rhythmic double pedals, annihilating riffs, and black-hearted screaming vocals, Alkira got the heavy metal crowd bumping along. A modernised, drum smashing cover of Metallica’s ‘Ride The Lightning’ sealed the deal for Alkira. The band left the stage with a final song reminiscent to Slayer’s ‘Raining Blood’. Alkira left the stage to a resonating and rarely appreciative response from the crowd for the first act of the night. Alkira are a local Adelaide metal band to look out for. Catch Alkira on December 17th at The Grace Emily for their Klotho album launch.

Seasoned Adelaide metallers Se Bon Ki Ra were up next. There was something odd about having Se Bon Ki Ra as the support act for Lamb Of God. Both bands seem extremely similar in genre and stage presence. This goes as far as vocalist ‘The Chad’ looking (and dressing) like a younger Randy Blythe, sharing his on-stage mannerisms and vocals.

Although it seemed odd at first, there’s no better place to act like Lamb Of God than a venue stacked to the brim with Lamb Of God fans, right? Se Bon Ki Ra smashed through their set as fans eagerly waited as Lamb Of God got closer. Se Bon Ki Ra are instrumentally tight and sounded great, bringing unique sounds to the genre with bassist ‘Ben Bon’s’ slap jazz style technique, while vocalist Chad showed his Machine Head influence by rapping select verses.

Playing songs off of their 2013 album In The Wake Of Change the band offered refreshing elements while still sticking to the staple metal grooves that the fans had come to hear. Se Bon Ki Ra were visibly proud and openly vocal about their opportunity to be opening for Lamb Of God. Se Bon Ki Ra took their shot and undoubtedly won new fans who are looking for a local replacement once Lamb Of God are gone.

It’s been a few years since Lamb Of God graced Adelaide with a hefty headline performance. Seeing Lamb Of God frequent Soundwave Festival, with 30,000 Adelaidians and only playing a short festival set was one thing. Seeing the band in a smaller capacity venue with only the most loyal fans is an opportunity that cannot be missed.

Lamb Of God honoured Adelaide with a crunching 90-minute setlist playing hits from every album. Thier latest album VII: Sturm Und Drang was heavily featured, this included ‘Still Echoes’, ‘512’, ‘Engage The Fear Machine’ and ‘Anthropoid’. HQ quickly became a throbbing mosh of hot, sweaty and playfully violent metalheads. For a venue that normally handles EDM club nights and the occasional scuffle on the dance floor, the security handled the ongoing onslaught of crowd surfers like champions. Vocalist, Randy Blythe made sure the crowd gave security their thanks in a unanimous round of applause.

With 16 years and 7 albums worth of material, Lamb Of God compiled a dream setlist that featured enough to keep every fan singing and moving along the whole time. The Adelaide crowd kept up the momentum for the whole show, Lamb Of God don’t offer any songs to waltz along to, the whole 90 minutes featured hits that kicked every door down.

Adelaide and Perth were treated to a personal headline performance by Lamb Of God. Sure the East Coast got Slipknot and a support set from Lamb Of God, but there’s definitely a few East Coast fans who will be sobbing at home after reading the setlist Adelaide got. Thanks for visiting Australia’s long forgotten sons.