Show Review: Cannibal Corpse & Behemoth

Venue – Jannus Live
Location – St Pete, FL
Date – March 6th, 2015
Lineup – Cannibal Corpse, Behemoth, Aeon, Tribulation

A few times a year, fans will see a tour announcement that causes their jaw to drop to the floor. Extreme metal fans were the latest crowd to experience this phenomenon at the announcement of what will be arguably one of the best metal tours of 2015. What metalhead wouldn’t drool at the thought of a co-headlining tour between two of extreme metal’s biggest names? Tampa’s death metal legends Cannibal Corpse and Poland’s blackened-death metal legends Behemoth trekked across North America for a little over a month in support of CC’s thirteenth album “A Skeletal Domain” and Behemoth’s critically acclaimed album “The Satanist”. Supporting CC and Behemoth would be Sweden’s Aeon and Tribulation. I was lucky enough to catch the tour at the second to last tour-date in St. Petersburg, Florida at Jannus Live. With such an incredible line-up, was the tour everything I thought it would be? Or were my expectations too high?

Before I begin with the actual performances from the bands, let’s talk about the venue itself briefly. This was surprisingly my first time at Jannus Live in St. Pete. The venue has a pretty unique setup as it is in what would be described as a large alley. Everything is outside which is certainly something you would not expect in downtown St. Pete. However, I really enjoyed seeing the show at Jannus because of the superb sound quality. Especially the drums. The drum-kits sounded absolutely massive here. You could easily feel the kick drum in your chest when close to the stage (this is how you make blast beats even more intense than they already were). Jannus Live’s quality definitely was the icing on the cake to the show. I hope I can see a lot more metal tours come to this venue in the future.

Opening up the show was Tribulation. I was not familiar at all with them going into the show and by the end of their set-list, I was disappointed I was not aware of them before. Tribulation play an interesting combination of black, thrash, and death metal. Even though I was not familiar with their music, I really enjoyed their set. There music had an intriguing Transylvania type atmosphere to it and the entire band had a stunning stage presence.  If you’ve never heard of these guys, definitely make an effort to do so.

Following Tribulation was Aeon. Although I will say Aeon at first glance appears to be your typical death metal act filled with blast beats, tremolo-picked riffs, and sacrilegious lyrics, Aeon perfects what they do. Their set-list consisted of songs from all over their discography from “Blessed by the Priest” and “Forgiveness Denied” from their two most recent albums to “Living Sin” and “Forever Nailed” from their debut and sophomore album.  Each song was as pummeling as the last. Aeon was a great fit in the bill to help shape the tour’s extreme factor with their speed and aggression.

Before the headlining act, the one and only Behemoth took the stage. This being my first time seeing one of my favorite bands, I was quite excited and for a very good reason. Seeing Behemoth live isn’t just hearing a fine mix between death and black metal. Between the music, the stage attire and props, and the overall atmosphere, Behemoth is an experience. Behemoth played over an hour of their discography including even a couple songs from earlier albums. Considering Behemoth has ten full length records to pull from, it was a nice touch seeing them play both “Decade of Therion” and “Chant for Eschaton (2000)”. Fans also heard plenty memorable songs from the more recent albums such as “Oro Pro Nobis Lucifer” and “At the Left Hand ov God”. One of the best aspects of Behemoth’s performance (and something that many bands fail to achieve) is the vitality and strength that is heard on recording, is still present live. Behemoth’s performance was exactly what I was expecting. Make sure you see them live if you haven’t. If you have – go again. Its worth it.

Finally, it was time for the final performance of the night – Cannibal Corpse. Cannibal Corpse is no stranger to the Tampa, Florida area by any means. Even though I had already seen CC a few times prior, I was still ecstatic. Cannibal always throws a top-notch performance and is still one of the best acts I have seen live to this day. CC also played for over an hour (Behemoth and Cannibal Corpse swapped the headlining spot back and forth for each day of the tour) and also played a wide variety of material from their discography of thirteen full-length albums. Energy levels were at an all time high from the crushing opening of “Scourge of Iron” to the savage closure with “Devoured by Vermin”. Not to mention, CC’s second to last song, “Hammer Smashed Face”, had the most intense shove pit I have ever been a part of. Once again, Cannibal Corpse did not disappoint with their flawless musicianship. Cannibal Corpse are another band you must see live before you die.

Overall, this was a fantastic show with a killer performance from Cannibal Corpse, Behemoth, Aeon, and Tribulation. This will definitely be one of the most memorable tours of 2015 for me. I even got to meet both Behemoth and Cannibal Corpse before the show! Unfortunately, the tour is over now. So if you missed this, I express my deepest condolences. It’ll be tough for any metal tour of 2015 to surpass this one.

B CC Meet and Greet

You can read our interview with Orion from Behemoth here.