Stardust Theater – 10/14/19
First, The Stuff…
Tuesday we were docked in the exotic location of… San Diego, CA?!!? I get it, I get it.. not everyone is a local. However I am… so forgive me if I wasn’t as enthused as others to get off the boat and tour around. So after I grabbed some coffee I checked out the Doro and Band Q&A in the Atrium…
However… I actually did venture off the boat with my bud Joe and our friend Molly and after catching the tail end of the Luc Carl and Kiko 5k and grabbing a snap of some dude from some band wandering around the port, we wandered over to the U.S.S. Midway. Totally worth the price of admission and worth a walk the bowels of the boat and the impressive deck with it’s fighter planes and helicopters.
As I start to write this review of the first of Testament’s two shows, I tend to agree with fellow MegaCruiser, David Baker on both content and enthusiasm…
And I would love to go that route, because I’m gonna be honest… writing a review can be fucking tedious at times. HOWEVER…there are those other occasions where the words flow because the band you’re seeing made it extremely easy to write. Sometimes it’s because the performance was a virtual shit show…and others, like this one, when it’s a band that you love and they continue to fire on all cylinders.
I’ve never seen a bad Testament show. The energy level and intensity from a Testament concert should be harvested and used to fuel the World. This is Thrash perfection! Chuck Billy is a Beast of Man. Both in stature and vocal ability. A few years back he altered his style to a more gravel toned vocal and man if this band didn’t jump to new levels. Their last 3 albums have included more of a Doom/Black Metal presence, but the consistency in quality and incredible melodies has continued.
Testament looked like kids in a candy store on the boat. Big grins and a ton of energy from both band and fans alike. Chuck Billy, standing taller than ever, growling out gem after gem, throwing everyone else’s picks into the crowd and playing copious amounts of air guitar on his mic stand. Alex and Eric switching off between rhythm and blistering leads. Steve Di Girogio and Gene Hoglan thrashing and bashing their respective instruments with a healthy dose of headbanging thrown in for good measure.
The setlist was incredible, digging into all chapters of the Testament discography. Hammering everyone straight away with “Brotherhood Of the Snake” and “The Pale King“, they ripped into “More Than Meets The Eye“, “Practice What You Preach“, “Souls Of Black“, “Electric Crown“… Even dusting off the rarely played “Raging Waters” from “The Legacy” which seemed appropriate for this Cruise. Of course if Testament ever decide to host a cruise themselves, it would have to be called “Raging Waters“, right?! Chuck admitted he may have messed up the lyrics a bit, but if anyone noticed, they sure didn’t care.
Chuck was a bit hesitant before introducing “Into The Pit” due to the show being in a seated theater, but assured everyone that they’d have plenty of opportunity to mosh to their hearts content when they played their pool show. (And they did).
If there was a flaw in this set, I didn’t see it. Pure Thrash perfection from one of the OG’s of the Genre.
Basically what I’m trying to say is…”THEY KICKED ASS \m/“
Full Testament Gallery: Here