Written By: TIFFANY MITCHELL
This past Thursday night at Baltimore Soundstage wasn’t a night for the faint of heart. It was for those prepared to surrender themselves to the music, to the rage, the screams ripped from the ribcage. It was for the wondering and the wicked, the dark hearted and twisted, it was Whitechapel headlining the Decade Of Defilement Tour with Carnifex, Rings Of Saturn, Entheos, So This Is Suffering & Baltimore’s own Emerge A Tyrant, in support. So follow along as I take you back to that brutally epic evening, and be a willing victim to the unleashed sounds of hell.
Seems as tho this local five piece (Emerge A Tyrant,) didn’t have to sink too far into the abyss to find themselves part of the connective tissue that made up the Decade Of Defilement Tour. Like the decaying flesh of 1000 corpses, EAT fed the rotting bones with a meaty structured set. As they violated your barren carrion, their screams forced the waiting mortals awake brutally rattling the crowd to the marrow. Shaken and stirred with a sick ass start, the ravenous guests only hungered for more.
Meeting their fate, So This Is Suffering didn’t wait to unleash the Armageddon on stage. With carnivorous delivery “Surveil” unearthed howls from the masses below. With relentless shreds “Sleeper Hold” beckoned the unmoving as the pit-pushers fell into the death dance. Savage fists flew, connecting with tangled fleshy limbs provoked by the beastial growls of “Muerte Bella.” Although STIS executed seven songs of body-dropping desolation, the death metal feast was far from over.
After a quick fifteen minutes passed the female-fronted Entheos took their turn in cutting out the calm like cancer with “Perpetual Miscalculations.” Lay wasted was the mic, tongues tasted the blackness that night, as vocalist Chaney Crabb invaded ones internal grave. Releasing the beast from the darkness, Entheos discarded “The World Without Us” with metal precision and undeniable craft. The walls ran slick with perspiration and blue lights pierced through the haze that surrounded the room. “The Infinite Nothing,” invaded the speakers like the rock horns that broke through the cyan fog. Each song crushing to the core, Entheos shattered expectations as they ended their set with “Pulse of a New Era,” off their latest album Dark Future. That vulturous riff that dominates the first two minutes of the song, right to the hell that is unleashed in the latter, “Pulse of a New Era,” was a killer end to a killer set.
Still within the confines of the night, severed from the world outside, metal-heads look to ingest what this tour has left to offer. Ring Of Saturn is next to nourish the need. Right away “Margidda” and “The Relic” pounded your plasma alive. Behind the barricade, insanity broke loose with a pit of crashing figures. As the spotlight scanned the room and fell on the crowd, it looked something out of a movie as the pit-goers lit up and then disappeared into the shadows. Only to reappear when the light came back around, revealing fists flying here, and bodies smashing there. By time “Seized And Devoured” was played, the bloody and bruised were just getting hyped and ROS had pulled out the entrails of their set and laid it all on the floor. Ending with “Inadequate,” the wanton got what they wanted in a very adequate way, devouring every note.
Seeking to Destroy, the Decade Of Defilement Tour had been successful so far in distribution and execution. Could metal fans handle anymore? The swarm was still buzzing, and next to sting and swell the air with death metal infection was Carnifex. Dressed in black leather, each member crept out onto the platform through the murky fog and positioned themselves in front of the neon red pentagrams that were posted on opposite sides of the stage. Vocalist Scott Ian Lewis stood up on the riser and yelled “Baltimore, I want to see those horns in the fucking air,” and as the house obliged, “Dark Heart Ceremony” kicked the set off. Like a scene right out of Hell itself, the blood-red glow from the lights overhead, bled into the darkness that surrounded the room. Lewis stood with his arms stretched open like a high priest beckoning his disciples. The servants adhered as horns thrashed about and necks snapped to the cadences possession. Entranced by the invocations, the mortal minds of those taking part in the metal reverie, let go of their own realities to succumb to the music and it’s dominion. By the time “Hatred And Slaughter” took you over, the pentagrams illuminated blue through the hazy overcast of green lights, and the vessels beneath were unstoppable in their reveling. The substantial pit seemed to grow with each song of the nine song set list, ending with “Hell Chose Me.” Security kept a close eye on the crowdsurfers that dropped in droves while the rest recited the words and bounced in place. Carnifex reduced charm city to ashes that night. But there were still shreds of Baltimore left to destroy and Whitechapel would soon leave it in its necrotic decay.
The night belonged to Whitechapel, as The Decade Of Defilement Tour is the 10 year celebration of their debut album The Somatic Defilement that was released in July of 2007. Whitechapel has since gone on to crank out five more studio albums, ending with the 2016 release of Mark Of The Blade. This month-long North American tour has brought them to our dark corner of the cave to show Bmore what deathcore really sounds like. Following the carnage left behind by Carnifex it would be no small task to complete, and despite the sudden departure of drummer Ben Harclerode, make no mistake Whitechapel committed genocide that night and left no survivors. Phil Bozeman [vocals,] Ben Savage [guitar,] Zach Householder [guitar,] Alex Wade [guitar,] Gabe Crisp [Bass] and filling in on drums Chason Westmoreland, received the clamoring cries of excitement from the many who had come to witness. As they took their places in front of the life-sized silver saw blades that were positioned on each side of the stage, the first few notes of “Mark Of The Blade” hit you and mayhem rocked the room.
“I know you can feel it
Let it in
People will still hate you in the end
So hate back
Plan the attack then they’ll realize they can’t crack
The mind of a fucking maniac
The voice inside you always wins
Your graves been dug so lie in it
And commit until the end for your dear old friend
And I promise that amends will meet at the end”
It didn’t take long to feel the need to move course through your veins, provoked by the very power behind Bozeman’s vocal assault. “Elitist Ones” and “Faces” shattered the atmosphere like fragile panes of glass as the delirium continued inside the four walls of Baltimore Soundstage. The riotous souls behind the caged barriers crunched and splintered against themselves till the sweat poured from their membranes. Bodies clutched and passed overhead as the rest rocked the concrete while they jumped in place. Compelling riffs and sick shreds cradled by relentless verbage, Whitechapel remained eternal throughout. Jumping to some of the others that coersed your extremities to move, like “The Saw Is The Law,” “Prostatic Fluid Asphyxiation” and “Vicer Exerciser,” it was one matchless round after another. With 13 songs and two encores, being “Possession” and “This Is Exile,” this set was one of Whitechapel’s best performances in my opinion, making this show my fifth time seeing them live. This show had the sickest set list, the best crowd participation for capacity with 100% flawless execution from each member. The Decade Of Defilement Tour was one of this years most memorable tours and every band on the bill split the deathcore genre wide open and rearranged its face. If you had a chance to catch this tour, lucky for you. If you hadn’t or you’re undecided about getting tickets to a stop nearby, you’ll be seriously missing out.
You can grab tickets still to attend the Decade of Defilement Tour HERE.
Interview with Chaney Crabb from Entheos
Whitechapel at Baltimore Soundstage
Rise (Instrumental Intro)
- The Saw Is The Law
- Possibilities of an Impossible Existence
- Necrotizing (Intro is a quote taking from serial killer Jeffrey Daumer)
- The Somatic Defilement
- Devirgination Studies
- Fairy Fay
- Prostatic Fluid Asphyxiation
- Vicer Exciser
- Ear to Ear
Entheos at Baltimore Soundstage
Emerge A Tyrant/ So This Is Suffering /Carnifex at Baltimore Soundstage