I went to Heavy Mtl this Sunday. I had initially decided to skip it, despite the presence of Opeth, who are one of my favourite bands. Still, I’d seen them 3 times already, and the other bands on the bill were more for interest sake than for real love of the music (ie: Annihilator, Anthrax, Motorhead and uh, Kiss) also, paying $85 to stand in the sun all day is not my idea of a good time. However, when they announced that the mighty Morbid Angel would be putting in an appearance, I was sold.
Now, Morbid Angel is one of those bands that resides in a very soft squishy place in my heart. If one were to dig up my Junior High School notebooks one would find them full of carefully drawn Morbid Angel logos as well as statements such as “Trey Azagthoth Rules!!!” We’ve sort of grown apart over the years, and I’m in the same state of shock as the rest of metaldom over their latest album, but a month doesn’t go by that I don’t spin up Alters of Madness, so I jumped at the chance to see them live, and I’m glad I did.
They started with a killer version of Immortal Rites which really set the scene for the rest of the set. I think everyone was sort of holding their breath at the beginning, cause we weren’t sure what to expect, but there was an explosion of joy and giddiness when they made it apparent that the Morbid we know and love still reigns supreme. In fact, they managed to fit a nice cross-section of their 20+ year career into their 45min set, including two of my favourite songs; Chapel of Ghouls and Angel of Disease.
It was also nice to see that Trey Azagthoth does indeed rule. He really does have odd technique. I don’t think I’ve ever seen anyone play the guitar quite the way he does. There’s something really special about his playing that I’ve been trying to put my finger on all week. I think it’s that he is truly playing from within himself. There’s a very serene quality to his playing, despite the fact that he is playing very aggressive music, and you get the impression that he couldn’t care less if we were there or not. The music just flows out of him because he’s playing purely for his own enjoyment, which is always something that endears me to a player. He also played an unaccompanied solo, which, to be honest is really all it takes to make Kyla happy. You often don’t get those little perks at a festival where the sets are short.
So inspiring was the show, that I have listened to nothing but Morbid Angel in the week since. I plan to continue listening to nothing but Morbid Angel all the time at least until I jump in the car with Molt and Issfenn to play Halifax in August.
(Oh, and for those of you who are wondering, Opeth was just as awesome the 4th time as they were the first, second, and third times.)