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  • Writer's pictureMisael Ruiz

Death to All/Suffocation - Ventura, CA - 3/10/23

If you're a fan of metal music, then you have no doubt have heard about the fathers of death metal, Death. The metal community still mourns the loss of Death mastermind Chuck Schuldiner who passed away in 2001. Over 20 years later, Chuck's legacy lives on and continues to inspire musicians and guitarists to this day. Former members of Death continue to play Death's music to continue the legacy of Chuck and for those who weren't fortunate enough to see Chuck back in the day and this band goes by the name Death to All. Another tour was announced, and this tour was to celebrate 30 years of their monumental album Individual Thought Patterns. The lineup for this tour will consist of singer/guitarist Max Phelps (Cynic/Exist), guitarist Bobby Koelble, bassist Steve Di Giorgio and drummer Gene Hoglan. Joining them on this tour would be death metal legends Suffocation and Nukem. This stop of the tour was at the Majestic Ventura Theater in Ventura, California. A Friday night was the perfect setting for a show like this.

The lights went out and the venue cheered as the members of Suffocation came out and started their show with Thrones of Blood. Right away, you could hear the sound that gives them their classic death metal feel along with guttural vocals. Original vocalist Frank Mullen stepped from performing with Suffocation in 2019 and after a few replacements, Suffocation settles with Ricky Myers who also sings for the death metal band Disgorge. Suffocation never has any dull moments during their performance nor were they ever quiet as they pummeled the ears of the audience by playing classics like Pierced From Within, Bind Torture Kill and the finale, Infecting the Crypts. Suffocation is a must-see band regardless of whether you've heard of them or not. Once their set was finished, they left the stage and made way for the headlining band of the night.

Lots of obvious Death fans were in attendance and the Ventura County fans are always happy to have a show local to them instead of having to drive out to Los Angeles and farther. The lights went out once again and the venue cheered with excitement as the members of DTA came out. It being the 30th anniversary tour for ITP, it was no surprise that the first song played was the first track from the album, Overactive Imagination. The crowd went crazy for these death metal classics as they moshed and shoved each other. The next track played was The Philosopher, another song from ITP and one of Death's best songs. All the band members were on point and played each song with perfection. Phelps channeled Chuck perfectly and if you were to close your eyes and listen, you'd think you're seeing Chuck himself on stage. Hoglan pounded away on the drums and continuously proved why he's one of metal's best drummers. Di Giorgio played his bass beautifully and you could even hear his bass playing over the speakers instead of being drowned out by all the other instruments which is the case for most bands. Koelble shred away at every song and fans loved head banging to every note played. More Death classics played included Bite the Pain, Spiritual Healing, Leprosy, and Living Monstrosity. No matter what song was played, fans showed their love and support by moshing, raising their horns, singing along and banging their heads. The last song played was the classic song Symbolic. DTA left the stage and all was quiet for a little bit. After a small break, they came back out for a few encores. The first encore was Flattening of Emotions. Fans clearly weren't tired still as they continued to go crazy. The rest of the encores were Zombie Ritual, Spirit Crusher and Crystal Mountain. No bad songs were played on this show because really, Death has no bad songs. The grand finale for the show was the usual closing song Pull the Plug. DTA finished their set and left the stage for the last time. This was the best way to honor Chuck's legacy and music and hopefully DTA come back again soon to deliver more Death classics and prove that metal is still alive and well.

Photos and review by Misael Ruiz

IG: tarantulamanmr

Death to All


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