Soulfly does Nailbomb - 10/23 @ Voltage Lounge

w/ Cannabis Corpse, Noisem, Lody Kong

First up was Soulfly doing an all Nailbomb set. Since most people weren’t at the 1995 edition of the Dynamo Open Air Festival in Holland or the warmup show the night before, no one has ever really seen Nailbomb perform live. For those that are unaware, the band was really just two members, Max Cavalera (Ex-Sepultura, Soulfly) and Alex Newport (Fudge Tunnell), with the help of Dino Cazares, Igor Cavalera, and Andreas Kisser. But it was always Max and Alex’s band. They did about 75% of the record themselves. So when Max announced that he would be taking his Soulfly project out on the road to perform these songs, diehards of the band dismissed it as not really being Nailbomb since there was no Alex. While I get that having Alex play would have been the icing on the cake, this was half Max’s project and he did get the blessing from Alex to do it. It’s been 22 years since these songs were performed live, why not embrace what it was. I know I did.

As for the set itself, it was relatively perfect. Soulfly, like their original stuff or not, is a tight band and I know that Max has been working on getting them tight with the Nailbomb material dating back as far as April when he announced that he would be doing this tour. For Alex’s vocals and the programming duties, was Max’s son Igor. He had some minimal timing issues with some of the parts but legitimately sounded a lot like Alex. If you had just heard the audio without any visual, you could be tricked into thinking that Newport was onstage with them. Knowing that Max tends to get lazy with his guitar while playing live, Marc Rizzo is easily the best guitarist he’s ever worked with and clearly held down the fort when it came to the guitars. I don’t know much about the new bassist or the current drummer, but there were no glaring issues with either of them. As someone that has been jamming the Nailbomb record for the last 20+ years, I was very pleased with what I was delivered last week, especially considering all the stage and technical issues on Proud To Commit Commercial Suicide, the bands only real performance.

Opening the show was Noisem, who I don’t think work as a 3 piece and should find at least another guitarist to thicken their sound up, and Cannibis Corpse, who I just don’t enjoy. Their frontman is funny and does his best to sell the gimmick but I just can’t get into it. And it’s not because I don’t smoke weed, I just don’t think they have many, if any, really good songs to win me over.

*Side note: There was one guy there that left before Nailbomb even went on because he was mad that Soulfly wasn’t playing any of their songs, even went as far as to scream “I don’t even know who the fuck Nailbomb is.” So there’s that.*

GWAR: The Blood Of Gods Tour - 10/29 @ Troc

w/Ghoul, U.S. Bastards

As I said, the almighty GWAR returned to play the Trocadero for the first time since December of 1995. The rumors that they were banned from the venue because of the damage caused by the blood. Back in those days the blood stained your skin for a week, no matter how many showers and could change hair color if your hair was light enough (this happened to a friend of mine in 1999, 2 days after he bleached his hair. It was pink for weeks). So I could only imagine what it did to a venue and one deemed a historical site. This was also the first time the band was touring in support of a record without founding member, Dave Brockie, performing as Oderus Urungus. At this point, GWAR loyalists are used to seeing Blothar (Mike Bishop) fronting the band so the edge is off of it being “weird” without Oderus singing. You either like it or you don’t. Judging by the crowd at the show, most people still enjoy seeing them live regardless of who is singing.

The one thing I quickly noticed though is that they were starting their set into the direction play mostly songs that Bishop was apart of which, fortunately, includes a ton of the classics. Not to completely discredit the material he’s not on, they do include some of the more modern classics like Bring Back The Bomb and Womb With A View. On the flipside, if you aren’t a fan of the new record, you will be slightly disappointed in the setlist this time out as they play 10 of the tracks from it, including closing with the AC/DC cover of If You Want Blood (You Got It).

The other aspect to seeing GWAR, and for some people it’s the only reason they even bother with the band, is the blood. If you’ve been paying attention in the last 15 or so years, it’s pretty formulaic now. The story this time around is that Sleezy has sold the band to a global powerhouse corporation, GLOMCO, who demands they released a hit record. Well, they naturally kill the owner and Sleezy buys them back for $1. They also kill President Trump (disemboweled), a priest (shove a cross up his ass), Dickie Duncan (Glomco mascot, split in half), a nazi and Antifa protester (beheaded), Sawborg Destructo (torn apart), and a couple of soldiers trying to ambush them in Antarctica (also beheaded). So as the cover song suggests, if you want blood, you definitely got it and by the gallons. All in all, it was a very fun set for the 39th time that I’ve seen the band.

Opening were US Bastards, which were are a Motorhead worship, fast rock outing featuring Brad Purgison (GWAR’s Pustulus Maximus) on guitar. This was the first time I’ve ever seen them. They were entertaining enough but I’m not entirely sure if I would revisit their stuff on my own. I’d probably need someone else to try to force them on me before I’d give them another shot. The Creepsylvanian’s in Ghoul served as main support. These murder grinders have also started to incorporate the show and blood akin to GWAR and it’s paying dividends because they seem to keep getting more and more attention. If there was ever a band for GWAR to pass the torch too, it would be Ghoul.

GWAR Setlist:

War on GWAR
Hail! Genocide
I’ll Be Your Monster
Death To Dickie Duncan
Saddam A Go-Go
Womb With A View
Crushed By The Cross
Viking Death Machine
Bring Back The Bomb
El Presidente
Black And Huge
The Sordid Soliquay Of Sawborg Destructo
Mr. Perfect (Intro)
The Morality Squad (instrumental)
Fuck This Place

Phantom Limb
If You Want Blood (You Got It) (AC/DC cover)