Sounds of shredding guitars, growling vocals, and hard- hitting drums echoed out of Revolution Live on February 9th as the kings of melodic death metal, At the Gates, kicked off their North American tour with Harm's Way, The Haunted, and Decapited.
Harm's Way opened the show as the metalheads filed in, but there was no time for them to warm up for the night. People made their way to the pit and started swinging. Harm's Way does not slow down during their set - no breaks, no interludes, just song after song of pure power rocking the crowd. I had, admittedly, never heard Harm's Way before this night but their live show was so impressive I have definitely kept them on my radar since.
The Haunted was up next, the brother band supergroup to At The Gates. The Haunted, of Gothenburg, has been an integral part of the metal scene since the mid 1990's when formed by ex-members of At the Gates. The current line up consists of Marco Aro back on vocals, Adrian Erlandsson on drums, bassist Jonas Björler, Ola Englund on lead guitars, and Patrik Jensen as the rhythm guitarist. Despite line up change throughout the years, The Haunted proves they are just as musically tight as ever. The pit had swelled with pulsating energy and flying bodies as The Haunted performed memorable hits such as "D.O.A." and "The Flood." The Haunted saved the best for last for the fans, however, closing out the show with "Bury Your Dead" and "Hate Song." The band poured their all into the set, and the audience gave it right back.
Following the Haunted was Polish deathmetal band, Decapitated. Decapitated is cited as being responsible for reigniting a stagnating death metal scene after their 2000 release of Winds of Creation. The set list relied heavily on their latest release, Blood Mantra, with over half the songs coming from the album. This was not surpri sing, however, as Blood Mantra has been their most successful release in the States to date. The pit had violently taken over the floor by the second song, no safe place to stand on the floor without the threat of being knocked down. That's hardly a complaint at a metal show, though, just the crowd showing their appreciation for the band.
The fans in the pit caught their breath, with the few heavyweights still ready to go, as At the Gates stormed the south Florida stage for the first time in twenty years. Singer, Tomas Lindberg, bounced back and forth on the stage as the b and's aggression shred through song after song. The intensity of the night was at an all-time high through many songs off their 2014 release At War with Reality. The crowd was wild, and the energy of the set did not falter. The band finished the night out with their poetic "The Night Eternal" the perfect end to their triumphant return, as the band left the stage the crowd was left beaten, bruised, and hoping for a much quicker return.