16 March 2019 at Badlands Bar
Over the weekend I had the opportunity to catch thrash metals newest flag bearers Alien Weaponry tear apart the stage at Badlands Bar in Perth. Barely of legal age yet these guy’s have conquered the US and Europe including playing the unholy mecca of metal festival’s “Wacken Open Air” in Germany. Having seen them play a short set at Download Festival in Melbourne last weekend, I could not wait to see a full set in a more intimate environment.
Kicking off the night’s proceedings were Perth’s very own Thrashers Remission with a no-holds-barred set full of outright thrash intensity. The relatively young band showed why they have been picked to support not just Alien Weaponry but also a handful of other international support slots over the last 18 months. Frontman Jacson Robb commanded the crowd like a veteran performer, leaving the near capacity crowd foaming at the mouth for the nights headliners. Remission will be holding their heads up high after that absolutely great performance.
Alien weaponry hit the stage to the sounds of drummer Henry De Jong performing a haka from behind his drum kit. This most certainly got the Kiwi contingent of the crowd amped for what was to come. Wasting no time at all they smashed through the first few songs, proving to the crowd why they were there. Being the last show of the Australian tour you could tell there was no holding back. Bassist Ethan Trembath used every inch of the stage with style while pumping out a bass tone to die for. Frontman and drummer Henry’s older younger Lewis De Jong showed maturity and poise while smashing some monster riffs, while also delivering an aggressive vocal performance in both English and the native Maori tongue. While we are on the subject of brother’s you could feel the connection Henry and Lewis had right the way through the set, reminding me of brother duos Max and Iggor or Dime and Vinnie.
Some frontman feel the need to ask for circle pits and walls of death, which is ok sometimes but other times this just plain cringe worthy. Which brings me to the highlight of my night… The second the intro started for Kai Tangata the audience erupted into a circle pit without any instigation what so ever. Then three quarters of the way through came the interlude and once again, without hesitation a wall of death appears from nowhere.
With everyone singing along, the songs came to life in a way that can only be described as intense and Powerful. Leaving me asking the question “why hasn’t the Maori language been used in metal before”? The professionalism of this trio is far beyond their age and they are not to be taken lightly. This was the gig of the year for me and it will take a big performance to top the show Alien Weaponry put on. Honestly if you get the opportunity catch them live, do it or you will regret it.
Line-up: Alien Weaponry, Remission
Reviewer: Peter Mitchell