Klash of the Titans | Music | Salt Lake City Weekly

Klash of the Titans 

2023 North American tour review

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Spirit World - MARK GARDNER
  • Mark Gardner
  • Spirit World

Klash of the Titans' epic blend of four thrash metal bands had the entire crowd on its feet, banging heads, snapping necks and moshing. The lineup on this tour is like nothing any experienced metal-head (like myself) has ever seen before. The amount of metal experience on stage was unparalleled to any other show that has been in Salt Lake City. If you add up all the years of experience of these four bands, it is well beyond a century.

An element that is rare at these types of shows is a strong female presence. Brave women that are ready to thrash in the pit were present and ready to rumble. Also, the new generation of metal fans under 21 years old were right up front ready to get their headbang on. This new wave of young fans will keep metal alive well into the future. Shout-out to the parents who introduced these kids to metal.

A new genre of metal, "death western thrash," was invented by a band called Spirit World created by Stu Folsom out of Las Vegas in 2017. These rhinestone cowboy-hat-wearing metal dudes look like they might start playing mariachi music. Instead, they came out with punishing guitar riffs and double-bass drumming that incited an aggressive circle pit. Fans at the venue were sincerely impressed with this new genre of metal that most have never witnessed before. Their apocalyptic vision of the American West comes out in their 2022 album Deathwestern, and songs like: "ULCER" and "Relic of Damnation" are perfect examples of this band's extremely unique sound.

For those about to rock - MARK GARDNER
  • Mark Gardner
  • For those about to rock

Death Angel followed Spirit World, and shredded as expected. This Bay Area thrash band—credited with being one of the "big eight" of Bay Area thrash metal—has been around since 1982. They have released nine studio albums, two demo tapes, one box set and three live albums. They are among the pioneers of thrash metal that has been constantly overlooked.

Their sound was epic thrash metal with punishing vocals, rhythm and lead guitar. Lead singer Mark Osegueda and lead guitarist Rob Cavestany are the only two members that have appeared on all nine of their studio albums. Their set was a blend of perfectly crafted Bay Area thrash metal and a stage presence that was outstanding. This band is highly recommended and will be around for many years to come. Sources indicate that they may currently be working on a new album.

Kreator was waiting in the bullpit and came out charging. These undisputed kings of thrash metal from Germany formed in 1982, and they are as popular in Europe as thrash metal bands such as Metallica, Slayer and Testament. Seeing them in an intimate setting like this was a rare treat, and certainly should on a bucket list for any metal fan. The set they played was mind-boggling, with brutal lyrics and guitar, and they seemed as if they had the most stage time of all four bands. Lead vocalist and rhythm guitarist Miland "Mille" Petrozza delivered a performance that was close to perfect. The way he wails, shreds and screams was given mad respect from the audience that resulted in a killer circle pit. They also tried the "wall of death" that really did not resonate with the crowd like it would at a bigger type of festival in Europe. Overall, it was a fantastic performance; the audience couldn't have been more stoked.

The action up front at the Depot - MARK GARDNER
  • Mark Gardner
  • The action up front at the Depot

Brazilian thrash metal kings Sepultura served as the headliner of this extravaganza, and these guys were firing heavy thrash metal on all cylinders. Even though original lead singer Max Cavalera left the band in 1996, replacement vocalist Derrick Green did not disappoint. They played all the bangers such as, "Territory," "Roots Bloody Roots" and "Refuse/Resist," while also including some of their new songs peppered perfectly throughout the set. Drummer Eloy Casagrande embodies the spirit and original sound of the iconic Brazilian thrash that all we metal-heads know and love. He was by far the most energetic and disciplined percussionist from all the four bands in the "Klash of the Titans" 2023 North American tour.

A huge shout-out to The Depot's sound, security, staff and technicians, who made this epic thrash metal show a gigantic success. A massive thank you goes to the bartenders who held all our merch while we were front-row thrashing and entering the circle pit of all four different thrash metal bands from three continents. Also, a phone belonging to one of our friends was left at the venue, but it was returned in perfect condition by the General Manager Troy Stubbs of The Depot promptly—and with a thank you, handshake and a smile.

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Mark Gardner

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