Devildriver Unleash Set Of Crushing Modern Metal On Austin (SHOW REVIEW)

Come and Take It Productions continued their fantastic run of booking on Sunday night at Austin’s Grizzly Hall with a hell of a metal lineup spanning generations and genres. Devildriver headlined the affair, but their openers were basically headliners in their own right in the power packed evening.

Winds of Plague’s music, especially on their stellar debut Decimate the Weak, has always been a strange mish mash of deathcore, symphonic metal, straight up thrash, and even hip-hop influences. That set them apart in a set heavy on material from their debut, making them stand out against the backdrop of more traditional metal acts. Their mosh heavy approach showed a band revitalized after a number of years away from the game. Despite having not released a new record since 2013’s Resistance, Winds of Plague still felt vital.

Death Angel, who were strangely second billed despite their status as legends in the thrash metal community, also ripped it up on stage. In a time where contemporaries like Metallica and Megadeth have struggled to rediscover their own roots, Death Angel have stayed true since their formation in 1982. Their performance was so fast and heavy, you’d be hard pressed to guess they’ve been at this about 20 years longer than any other band that performed that night. In particular, lead singer Mark Osegueda didn’t miss a beat on his high notes and screams, when so many of his peers have lost their voices after years of touring.

Devildriver finally rounded out the night with some crushing modern metal. While each band on the bill represented a distinct form of metal and a time period in metal history, each showed why their variety was still important in 2017. Devildriver in particular, born from the ashes of nu metal in a dark period for the genre, showcased why they were hailed as saviors of true metal in the first place. As their setlist jumped around between new and old material, it displayed the band’s personal growth as well as their continued relevance as metal has grown and evolved over the past 15 years since their explosion onto the scene.

Each song felt just as impactful as the next, and made every dramatic mosh section all the more lively. While it’s no mistake that most songs performed came from their self-titled debut and its follow up The Fury of Our Maker’s Hand, the set flowed perfectly into new songs like “Daybreak” from last year’s Trust No One and even a cover of AWOLnation’s club hit “Sail,” reimagined in metal form.

Despite the differences in eras, it’s clear why each band fit on this bill. Each one set out with something to prove about their own continued impact and succeeded with flying colors. These kinds of mixed shows, featuring varieties of metal bands that don’t usually go on tour together, can either fall flat on their face or unite metalheads across generations with each of their unique approaches. This one achieved the latter in perfect fashion.


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