Vader at Warsaw in Brooklyn, NY

Polish death-thrash legends Vader killed the stage of Warsaw with support from Vitriol, Hideous Divinity and Abysmal Dawn.

Vitriol smashed expectations at Warsaw. Last year, their excellent debut album, To Bathe From the Throat of Cowardice, received a lot of praise. They took theHate Eternal2.0″ foundation and dialed up the intensity and aggression to a higher level. When bassist Adam Roethlisberger and guitarist Kyle Rasmussen traded vocal duties, they maintained an incredible amount of energy while thundering through their intense, technical instrumental duties. Fellow guitarist, Mike Ashton, brought a menacing presence as well, and despite being hidden by his kit, drummer Scott Walker’s immaculate, blistering performance spoke for itself.

It was also fantastic to see how much people vibed with what the band was doing. The crowd at most of the metal shows typically don’t get into the swing of moshing until halfway through the bill, but Vitriol’s final song stirred up the night’s first pit. They went on and played quite an impressive set but with time constantly flying, the band had to cut their set a bit short, it was a sure guarantee that the crowd would have grown more intense. Nonetheless, It was just such an excellent set.

When the Italian quintet Hideous Divinity took the stage, there were no real expectations. They made quite a first impression. Not your typical heavy metal-style of fashion with the chains and the skulls, but more on the “we’re just here to rage” kind of look, which certainly made them the stand out group of the night. 

Hideous Divinity set included pockets of melody, atmosphere, and prog flirtations, though there was still plenty of pure, crushing death metal. Vocalist Enrico Di Lorenzo had incredible stage presence throughout the band’s set, as did every other member, making them one of the most interactive groups. What’s very striking about the band’s set is how well-suited their songs were in a live setting despite the melodic breaks. Hideous Divinity’s song selection remained consistently engaging, the audience was raging, horns were up, and the mosh pit kept rolling. 

If Abysmal Dawn‘s performance is an accurate indicator; their new album Phylogenesis will be one of the highlight death metal albums of the year.

Abysmal Dawn offered the kind of fast, technical death metal from the early-2010s. Roughly a decade later, the band hasn’t lost their touch whatsoever. Their set had a couple of mid-paced, groovy cuts, but the majority of their time on stage was spent churning out flurries of riffs, blast beats, and solos with exceptional precision.

The crowd was equally impressed. The mosh pits started coming more frequently during the Abysmal Dawn’s set, and the relatively medium-size space made it so everyone in the immediate area was well aware it was time to throw down. Similar to Hideous Divinity, the band was able to balance the various tempos and moods from their discography, and it made for yet another fun performance on the night.

Vader blew the roof off Warsaw, their energy and personality making them the highlight of the night. Each band member helped create one of the most fun, engaging sets of the night, and easily one of the most vibrant sets from a veteran metal band ever seen live.

The crowd’s reaction to their set was by far the biggest surprise of the night. Audience interest often wanes once older bands take the stage, but not at this show.

The crowd reaction during Vader’s set was crazy. Everyone screamed “F***ing Vader!” and the mosh pit seemingly never took a break during their set. People were throwing down and shoving each other from the moment they played the first note of every single song on their setlist, and the pit progressively grew in size throughout their performance. 

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