Live Gig Review and All Photos by Zenae D. Zukowski
German thrashers Destruction recently embarked their North America Under Attack tour on May 22 in Oakland, CA and it concludes on June 11 at the Regent Theater in LA. During the course of the trek, they stopped at New York City on June 1 at the Gramercy Theatre with acts Jungle Rot, Warbringer, and Demons Within. It was an evening of thrash, death, and enjoyable chaos, and we were there in the center of all the action.
Demons Within kicked off the evening with one abrasive performance. Vocalist J.C.B ran across the stage, onto the barricade, and into the crowd without missing a note nor sounding like he was out of breath. It was a recipe for war and destruction. Disarray continued when Warbringer took over the show. For those who are unfamiliar, these California thrashers deserve a headlining set of their own especially after releasing their fifth studio album Woe to the Vanquished via Napalm Records.
They delivered a strong animated performance while utilizing every inch of the platform. Let’s just say, Warbringer is a band that you wouldn’t get tired of seeing after 50 shows. They bring back the thrash in THRASH and your eyes would be glued to them while headbanging along. Vocalist John Kevill’s expressions and interactions should make anyone want to see them again.
It’s been roughly a year and a half since they last performed in NYC, and this time around, they stepped their game up. Surprising the crowd singing most of the entire new album in order with songs “Silhouettes,” “Woe to the Vanquished,” “Remain Violent,” “Shellfire,” and “Descending Blade.” At one point, Kevill joked to the audience stating how everyone most likely didn’t even notice they were playing all new songs. Ultimately, they left the last three tracks of their set for older material including “Living Weapon,” “Living in a Whirlwind” and “Combat Shock.” Kevill gave a special shoutout to death metallers Jungle Rot, hinting that something happened to the group making them almost canceling the show.
Wisconsin death metallers Jungle Rot never disappoints as their set vigorously included destructive energy merciless riffs by Geoff Bub and nothing looked off putting either. However, there wasn’t much interaction between songs resulting in demolishing everyone’s eardrums instead.
After a short break, it was time for Destruction to conquer the platform in support of their fourteenth studio album Under Attack. These big four German thrashers managed to pack out Gramercy Theatre with several fans wearing Destruction t-shirts. The lights dimmed while every other note flashed a bright white light as the music continued to intensify. Many raised their cell phones to record all of the mayhem. The setlist included songs “Under Attack,” “Curse the Gods,” “Nailed to the Cross,” “Mad Butcher,” “Dethroned,” “Life Without Sense,” “Release From Agony,” “Total Desaster,” “Thrash Attack,’ “Invincible Force,” “Second to None,” “Antichrist,” “The Butcher Strikes Back,” following two encore tunes “Thrash Till Death” and “Bestial Invasion.”
By the end of the night, everyone was drenched in each other’s sweat for another successful night of metal. While shows continue to pile up for the summer season, Destruction should be included on many lists to attend.