The best metal shows in Denver in October
While many metal bands flirt with concepts and perceived aesthetics of Satanism, Deicide has championed a very anti-Christian stance. Deicide, formed in Tampa in 1987, has long been one of the pillars of death metal since releasing its self-titled 1990 debut album and even more so with its second, now classic, 1992 album Legion (named presumably after the demon Jesus cast into a herd of pigs). There is no denying the group's enduring influence on the more edgy end of death metal with the band's willingness to court controversy and its aggressive but precise songs.
See also: Dudes who love Deicide slideshow
In 1969, singer Dave Brock, the band's sole original member, formed Hawkwind with Mick Slattery after the two had been in psychedelic rock band Famous Cure. The duo assembled a band that incorporated elements of the then nascent electronic music world. The band's 1970 debut album didn't exactly set the world on fire, but the follow-up, 1971's In Search of Space, was a hit. The band went on to collaborate with famous science fiction and fantasy author Michael Moorcock on lyrics, and the 1972 addition of Ian "Lemmy" Kilmister boosted the band's live power. Hawkwind didn't necessarily invent space rock and it definitely didn't invent psychedelic rock but it is now seen as one of the primary proponents of both. On this rare outing in North America, Hawkwind will be playing its epochal 1975 album Warrior on the Edge of Time in its entirety and throw some other classics into the set for good measure.
Denver Doom Fest returns for its third year with an absolutely killer lineup spread over two nights at 3 Kings Tavern, including the Skull (featuring members of Trouble), Velnias, Khemmis, the Flight of Slepnir, Primative Man, Stoic Dissention, Gravecode Nebula, In the Company of Serpents, Black Acid Devil, Blighter, Lycanthia from Australia, Shroud of Bereavement, Pendulous, WHILT and Dead Temple. Tickets are $15-30.
If loudness does indeed equal greatness, then Portland's Red Fang could give Spinal Tap a run for its money. But more than volume, the band displays great musicianship, with sizzling guitar leads and complex breakdowns. In a genre becoming saturated with similar ideas and styles, most bands would be well advised to take a cue from Red Fang.
Back to the primitive like a caveman from the Ice Age, Soulfly busts out percussion-rich Brazilian tribal metal, along with instruments that look like they were crafted in the Amazon rainforest. This show is the chance to run, shove and slam in a mosh pit, as well as break out the tribal dancing shoes circling around the mosh pit. Soulfly is a direct descendent of Sepultura, one of the good sons of thrash/groove metal.
Doom-de-doom-doom, doom-de-doom-doom-doom. Simplistically gloomy in its lyrics as it is in its music, Katatonia floats in a sea of melancholia. The band's music holds the haunting atmosphere of a young Stephen King with pages of depression that stop and smells the roses. Strictly doom and gloom this outfit is not, however. A careful ear can hear the progressive metal that lies underneath the blanket of misery.
Five Finger Death Punch formed in 2005, when Zoltan Bathory and Jeremy Spencer started putting together their next band. Ivan Moody, a singer who'd moved out to L.A. without knowing a soul and had been sleeping in his rehearsal space, heard the nascent project's demos and ended up joining the band. Originally from the Denver area, Moody proved to be a charismatic and cathartic frontman, and the band has since gone on to become one of the most popular bands in modern hard rock and metal.
Orlando, Florida's Trivium got started in 2000 when a few friends impressed each other with their ability to play early Metallica. While the outfit is clearly inspired by James Hetfield and company, the same could be said of most worthwhile metal bands that have come along since 1984. Trivium's core sound combines thrash with Gothenburg-style melodic death metal, along with a willingness to incorporate musical elements into its songs and performances that have a cinematic quality. The act's 2008 album, Shogun, also infused elements of Japanese music in the songwriting as a nod to singer Matt Heafy's dual heritage.
Helloween emerged in the heavy metal scene of Hamburg, Germany, in 1984. Though considered power metal, anyone listening to the band's classic '80s material, on albums such as Keeper of the Seven Keys Part I and Part II, can hear echoes of the speed metal and punk that informed the music of early Iron Maiden. By 1993, when the band released Chameleon, Helloween had tried a more pop-oriented songwriting approach. After a few line-up changes, the group entered the 21st Century with the more experimental The Dark Ride. With the most stable line-up of its career since 2005, Helloween has been releasing new material every few years, including the album for which it is touring, 2013's Straight Out of Hell.
L.A. Guns first broke through when it released its self-titled debut in 1988, and made an even bigger bang with its follow-up, Cocked & Loaded, containing "The Ballad of Jayne," which locked in a flock of hardcore fans.
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