Three of Nuclear Blast Record's baddest acts took over the intimate stage at The Shrunken Head on August 13, 2013. Arsis, Fleshgod Apocalypse, and Wintersun with additional support from Starkill (Century Media Records) packed the house and shook the walls, each with their own unique interpretations of melodic/death metal. The Shrunken Head was swollen nearly to capacity with fans eager to stand inches from the infamous metallers from Italy, Finland, and Virginia Beach. This bill has been selling out all over the country and The Shrunken Head nearly kept precedence, falling short with only about a dozen tickets unsold. Please read on for complete tour dates in North America through September.
Each band on this bill has their own signature sound bringing together melodic and technical death metal with eclectic elements that can only come from a group of individuals who are passionate about the music they create. After a spirited opening set by Starkill, Arsis took the stage as the first of the Nuclear Blast brethren. (See the full slide show for pix) Arsis hails from Virginia Beach and brought to Columbus their intelligent take on technical/melodic death metal. Fleshgod Apocalypse, from Italy were next to take the stage. The five piece includes two guitarists and a bassist, all whom contribute vocals, a drummer, and a pianist/composer who arranges the symphonic elements of the band which include not only the piano, but an orchestra (The Fleshgod Apocalypse All Stars Orchestra), and an operatic vocalist, Veronica Bordacchini. While the orchestra did not join the tour, the lovely songstress is out with the band every night. (See full slide show)
The evenings opening acts opened fans eyes as to what can become of metal music when songs are written from the heart, and derived from elements that move the song writer from the depths of his spirit. All that was just a warm up for when Wintersun took over the stage. Fans rushed toward the Finnish melodic death metallers with a cult like enthusiasm. Wintersun coaxed audience members souls gently from their bodies into the sweet release of deep space with their dissonant guitars, and unearthly vocals. Most audience members knew every word to every song and screamed the words along with the band, with hands and horns outstretched. The entire performance was as thoroughly brutal as it was mind opening. Wintersun's set list included:
- "When Time Fades Away"
- "Sons of Winter and Stars"
- "Land of Snow and Sorrow"
- "Beautiful Death"
- "Darkness and Frost"
- "Death and the Healing"
- "Winter Madness"
- "Beyond the Dark Sun"
- "The Way of the Fire"
Make no haste in buying tickets when this show comes to your town. Check out the stellar lineup on the rest of their North American tour:
08/21/13 Vancouver, BC – Rickshaw Theater
08/23/13 Seattle, WA – Studio Seven
08/24/13 Portland, OR – Hawthorne Theater
08/25/13 San Francisco, CA – DNA Lounge
08/26/13 West Hollywood, CA – House of Blues
08/27/13 Anaheim, CA – House of Blues
08/28/13 San Diego, CA – House of Blues
08/29/13 Phoenix, AZ – Joe’s Grotto
08/31/13 Fort Worth, TX – Tomcats West
09/01/13 Houston, TX – House of Blues
09/03/13 Miami, FL – Churchill´s Pub
09/04/13 Tampa, FL – The Orpheum
09/05/13 Atlanta, GA – The Masquerade
09/06/13 Spartanburg, SC – Ground Zero