Posted in metal | music | pictures on June 29, 2012

photos by Justina Villanueva; words by Klaus Kinski

Death to All
Death to All

On Thursday June 28th, 2012, Death / Chuck Schuldiner tribute band Death To All rolled into NYC to lay a beating onto a sold-out, sweaty, wood-swellingly humid Irving Plaza. To call them a tribute band sort of trivializes just how mighty an assemblage Death To All actually is; a tribute band generally consists of fanboys and fangirls trying to make a buck playing someone else's music for roomfuls of mouthbreathers with low entertainment standards. The members of Death to All, however, were actual band members of Death during their ever evolving 18 year history, from 1983 through 2001 when the band disbanded following the sad and probably preventable death of Chuck Schuldiner.

For those not in the know; On May 13th, 1999, on his 32nd birthday, Chuck Schuldiner was diagnosed with a high-grade pontine glioma which is a malignant type of brain cancer that invades the brainstem. After a serious onslaught of radiation therapy, the tumor was neutralized and, after a surgery to remove what was left of the tumor, Schuldiner appeared to have a clean bill of health; and a pile of medical bills totaling over $70,000. Uninsured and unable to cover the costs, the metal community rallied in support of Schuldiner with benefit concerts, auctions, and other fundraisers to raise the appropriate funds. After this experience Schuldiner got himself insurance, but when the cancer came back his insurer wouldn't cover the procedures necessary to saving his life as his cancer was a pre-existing condition. More large scale benefits and auctions took place to come to his aid once again, but he eventually succumbed to pneumonia on December 13th, 2001.

This Death To All Tour was not only set about to pay tribute to Chuck Schuldiner who is hands down THE father of Death metal, but it was also devised with the intention of donating 20% of all ticket sales to the Sweet Relief Musicians Fund whose aim is to provide "financial assistance to all types of career musicians who are struggling to make ends meet while facing illness, disability, or age-related problems." And, man, this show could not have happened on a more historical day as Thursday June 28th, 2012 is the day the Supreme Court upheld President Obama's health care overhaul law. Had this existed in 1999, perhaps Death would be still be cranking out ear splitting masterworks in death metal.

Gorguts
Gorguts

The show kicked off at 8PM on the nose with Canadian death metal gods Gorguts. I first came to know Gorguts back in 1989 or 1990 when I saw a small blurb about them in Metal Maniacs. At the tail end of the blurb was an address from where you could order their demo tape. I sent away for the demo and when I got it it blew my mind. Seeing them last night was a personal triumph as I had never seen them before. The years have not slowed them down one bit. Their blast beats and time changes were super tight and brought me back to the day when bands like Gorguts and Deicide dominated the blast beat death metal scene. They played a phenomenal selection of cuts during their 45-minute set, a particular highlight for me being Stiff and Cold.

After a brief intermission for a gear changeover, the lights dimmed, the projector screen ascended, and the crowd absolutely exploded. I can't imagine a more enthusiastic response even if Chuck had shown up in the flesh. Although we wouldn't be seeing Chuck, we would be seeing some of the other members behind one of death metal's greatest bands. They kicked things off with the song "Zombie Ritual" from their 1987 debut Scream Bloody Gore. This song for me is THE archetypical death metal song; it's got speed, classic half time sections, fast double bass pummeling, throat splitting vocals... the works. For them to open the show with this was a stroke of genius because it not only represents the beginning of Death's career releasing records, but it also represents the very birth of death metal as we know it.

Other highlights included Spiritual Healing's "Within the Mind" and Human's "Lack of comprehension," but the set covered their entire canon. At one point early in the evening Irving Plaza's AC clearly stopped working, creating an atmosphere of unbearable heat, humidity, and misery. The humidity level was so appalling that every surface in the venue with the exception of the lower lobby was covered in moisture; stairs, bars, walls, bouncers... the balcony even looked like it was in a fog. It was as though as steam pipe had ruptured or something. At about 10:45 I couldn't take it anymore and so I joined legions of other fans in the lower lobby to watch the show on a TV. It was very disappointing to have to close out the evening like that, but it got to the point that not only was every floor surface a slip-fall-break-something hazard, but breathing was almost impossible. On the plus side I got to meet and talk to Gorguts' main man Luc Lemay at the merch table. Not only was he one of the nicest people I have ever met, he had a hand shake that could crush a bowling ball.

More steamy pictures from Death to All and Gorguts sets are below.

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Comments (28)

Mid-year nominee for the show of the year right about now.

Posted by Anonymous | June 29, 2012 4:53 PM

i only know about this band from googling the original Death

Posted by Anonymous | June 29, 2012 5:00 PM

Paul Masvidal is looking so fucking cute.

Posted by Anonymous | June 29, 2012 5:04 PM

Fake Death should tour with Fake Ghost.

Posted by Anonymous | June 29, 2012 5:16 PM

so many 6 string basses. ugh.

Posted by JT | June 29, 2012 5:22 PM

DEATH METAL IS TRENDY!!!!!WHITEZOMBIE SOLDOUT!!!!!!

Posted by Anonymous | June 29, 2012 6:01 PM

http://www.brooklynvegan.com/img/music/deathtoall/irving/20.jpg

Is that a white girl wearing an afro wig?

Posted by Anonymous | June 29, 2012 6:12 PM

@5:16

no one cares about "real" Death or "Real" Ghost.

Only you, because you buy records.

Faggot.

Posted by Anonymous | June 29, 2012 6:31 PM

6:12 PM... no that was real. I was standing in front of her catching people the whole time. No wig there.

Posted by Anonymous | June 29, 2012 6:40 PM

Pretty good write up, unlike some of the drivel that has been posted in the past couple of weeks. Now if the site can improve the photography....

Posted by Anonymous | June 29, 2012 6:42 PM

When the "fake" Death came into the scene, there was no way of knowing about the "real" Death. Give them a break. Both great bands.

The "fake" Ghost must have known about the "real" Ghost. We are waaaaaaaay into the internet age. Shame on them of using the name.

Posted by Anonymous | June 29, 2012 6:44 PM

"When the "fake" Death came into the scene, there was no way of knowing about the "real" Death. Give them a break. Both great bands."

Agreed. It was 1983 for fuck's sake. What resource did Chuck Schuldiner have to search the planet for other bands called Death? It's not like they were selling the other Death's records at the local Sam Goody or anything. People like you are so fucking tedious.

Posted by Anonymous | June 29, 2012 7:03 PM

Ghost > Death > herpes > Fake Death > Fake Ghost

Posted by Anonymous | June 29, 2012 7:13 PM

Three online Death To All Tour Shirts available through 8/1 for pre-order! Please help us do this again and insure the success of the current tour and grab one before they are gone!

http://www.vipmerch.com/category/death

Posted by DTA Tour | June 30, 2012 7:03 PM

God damn all you faggots. I'm gonna stick my dick so far up your asses that it pops right out of your bitch mouths.

Meet me tonight at 9pm on the east side of the FDR, under the Williamsburg Bridge. My knob will be shiny and hard when you arrive. Wear mesh pants. I can't poke through denim, faggot.

Posted by Anonymous | June 30, 2012 7:38 PM

^Um...

?

Posted by Anonymous | July 1, 2012 4:23 AM

I love Gogurt my mom used to put it in my lunch all the time

Posted by Anonymous | July 1, 2012 3:52 PM

So, did you find yourself a nice boy date last night 7:38? I'm glad that at least SOME of you sausages are being honest and facing those overwhelming same-sex impure urges head on (pun intended). Just remember to wear protection, you wacky sausages. Lots of nasty new bugs the CIA has been cooking up to start weeding out the freaks from the population through eugenics.

Posted by Anonymous | July 1, 2012 5:14 PM

^ Wow, gotta love the HIV-razzled ramblings of a twink during his last moments to that ravaging illness.

Oh, and: http://www.thebestpageintheuniverse.net/c.cgi?u=puns

Posted by Anonymous | July 1, 2012 6:26 PM

LOL I guess that would be a "no" huh faggot false metal boy? Go ahead, pretend to be something else now, I love it when you "play dress up"! Overgrown toddler.

Posted by Anonymous | July 1, 2012 7:13 PM

Oh, yes how I love AIDS jokes! More AIDS jokes!

Posted by Anonymous | July 1, 2012 7:28 PM

This show was amazing. Almost lost consciousness from the heat, though. Thanks very much to the kind fellow who escorted me back to the bar in the nick of time.

Posted by Anonymous | July 1, 2012 9:13 PM

Does anyone remember that girl at this show dressed like a crust punk/raver girl? So fuckable in that get up

Posted by robert chamberlin | July 1, 2012 9:22 PM

"Does anyone remember that girl at this show dressed like a crust punk/raver girl? So fuckable in that get up"

The one with the baby mask (painted black) and the bullet belt? Blonde-ish, looks like she crawled out from under a bench in Tompkins Park?

Posted by Anonymous | July 1, 2012 10:29 PM

It was a trick question. There were no girls at this show.

Posted by Anonymous | July 1, 2012 10:43 PM

How the fuck do you combine crust punk with raver? Do you even know what those two scenes look like?

Posted by Anonymous | July 1, 2012 11:02 PM

The show was not at your house, trendie #1043.

Posted by Anonymous | July 2, 2012 12:00 AM

I love the long hair.

Posted by jordon | July 27, 2013 4:30 PM

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