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Possessed + Apostate Viaticum + Zealot Cult | Live Review

About five years ago I picked up a rather fine t-shirt from Ian at Underground Distro: a simple,but always killer Possessed logo atop a shot of the great man himself at the mic.

That man is of course Jeff Beccerra and on August 14 this year he brought his own innate charm and no little amount of prototype Death Metal to Dublin’s Voodoo Lounge.

A seven hour round trip to a gig will always seem like something of a pilgrimage but this, particularly so.

This was POSSESSED. In Dublin. Once off, never again, surely.

So Monday nights don’t get any better than this. Even the constant deluge from the skies seemed to portent the arrival of a truly iconic band from the dark side.

First up though, the Irish contingent.

Apostate Viaticum

Apostate Viaticum light the flame on tonght’s proceedings with a corscucating attack that must have flayed the faces of the front row.

Me, I’m still lubricating from a safe distance, but entranced no less. This band reminds me of the much missed Weapon with no little amount of Azagthoth tricks thrown in there. Vicious, scything tunes. One word? Lethal.

Zealot Cult (and the merch)

Another welcome helping of local brutality comes in the form of Zealot Cult. Standing in front of this band is a pretty fucking devastating experience. Only a momentarily dropped plectrum offers respite.

My neck ain’t fit for this. In truth you just gotta take it in. Stand there and face the full miasmal force of this head on.

I never moshed in my life. You can’t appreciate this if you’re dodging elbows and trying to maintain verticality. This is a continuous barrage of molten Death Metal overseen by the imposing Jay Quigley.

Kick your fooball into his garden at your peril.

Quick trip to the merch stand, impressively replete with at least four different shirts from the headliners. That explains the surprising amount of Possessed adorned chests tonight. Cue a slight smug smile. This was always gonna be one of those gigs though where wearing the band’s shirt seemed right.

Laying eyes on a poster flag of that deliciously evil logo pretty much is the icing on my increasingly rich cake. 15 euro?? Bargain. And a special addition to my wall.

You’re Possessing Me

So. Possessed. Truly a band I never thought I’d see in Ireland. Or anywhere for that matter.

Hands up ,I didn’t realise this was being touted as a ’30 Years of Through The Eyes of Horror’ show until I copped a look at the plentiful merch. In further confession I am nowhere near as au fait with this material as I am the preceding albums.

Cuts such as ‘My Belief’ and ‘Storm in my Mind’ don’t take much getting into for any metalhead though as I quickly found out. Still, it was the likes of ‘Evil Warriors’, the mighty ‘Tribulation’ and the infamously titled ‘Death Metal’ that got this neck creaking.

That’s what this night was all about. Death Metal, spikes, leather, denim, beer and the prospect of an aching neck in the morning. Two new cuts did nothing to derail proceedings either.

I could sense a palpable will in the place for the new stuff to make the cut and ‘Abandoned’ in particular worked for me. First listens though eh? Judgement well and truly reserved but the future looks ……dark.

There were moments that sparked thought, the two young guns resplendant in denim and studs and a good helping of piss and vinegar. The Sabbath clad father who came along to ‘keep an eye’ on his son. The seemingly ‘mature normal Dad figure’ aside me at the front who brilliantly captures the image of a shadowy, spiked sillhouette through the blood red Possessed side stage banner, minutes before the commencement of this celebration of our niche culture.

A man ‘looking forward to his weekly dose of Metal ‘. Sorry bud, nothing’s private when you take out a phone in the front row. Incidentally a comment was shared about the wide divergence of nationalities in that front row. South Americans, the Eastern European brigade and a few of us thickos from the island. Rock on.

That shadowy silhouetted figure turned out to be one Daniel Gonzalez ( Master, Exhumed etc) soon to be looming large over me, searing off some effortless lead work and politely asking me to shift my little glass of Morgans away from his pedals. No bother, I’m at eye level with a studded leather boot after all.

I finish the evening in paroxysms of head banging from behind the much loved Voodoo Pillar.

Perhaps staving of thoughts of the lengthy bus trek back to Ballyshannon. More probably just not wanting this trip back in time to end.

Outside afterwards I heard that Jeff was still talking away to people. Doesn’t surprise me, the man is as grass roots as it gets and he was welcomed like a hero tonight .

Whether he ever does purchase that apartment in Dublin remains to be seen but he didn’t half leave a little of his ubiquitous essence with us by the rainswept Liffey tonight.

– David Crampton ::: 16/08/17
– Possessed pic from the Belfast show by Deez
– Apostate and Zealot pics by George Thomas and Elizabeth Boyle

  1. Wanted to make this But was just impossible.

    Im surprised there Isnt more Feedback here about it .

  2. Great night, Iam a huge Possessed fan going back to the day’s when SC was released. The setlist was superb, the entire Eyes of Horror ep to kick off and then a mix of Seven Churches and Beyond the Gates. The sound was really good, my memories of the sound when I was at Exodus and Destruction was not so good. I also got to meet the band thanks to Vinnie and George from Apostate Viaticum, who incidentally were excellent on the night. Jeff Becerra was really into talking to everybody afterwords, no airs and graces here. Just a true metal legend. Great night all round.

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