Written By: Braddon S. Williams aka The Concert Critic
On this date in history, 11/18/2018, I was present for an evening of blissful musical carnage as Whitechapel brought their “This Is Exile 10th Anniversary Tour” to Piere’s in Ft. Wayne, IN.
In addition to Whitechapel, we were pummeled sonically by Chelsea Grin, Oceano, and Slaughter To Prevail.
My traveling companions both have photographer passes to Piere’s, so I got to go in early with them, which I am super grateful. This allowed me to witness Slaughter To Prevail do their soundcheck and get everything dialed in.
I had no previous knowledge of this band, but became an instant fan watching them patiently get the details locked in and then delivering a murderous onslaught as a unit.
Their singer bears a passing resemblance to Phil Anselmo, and he shares that titans powerful confidence and ownership of the stage.
The Russian deathcore band Slaughter To Prevail started the show and set the tone early, dishing out a quick set of tightly coiled ferocity and had the crowd running circle pits and a vicious wall of death near the end of their time on stage. Oceano followed with their own brand of crushing power and continued the deathcore from their Illinois perspective.
Chelsea Grin were up next, a band from Utah, but sharing that deathcore heaviness and intensity that united all these bands. Up until Whitechapel hit the stage, each of the openers had only one guitarist, so when the headliners hit the stage with their triple guitar attack, there was a notable rise in both volume and intensity.
Whitechapel had the best light show of the night, a constantly shifting and flashing beast of a display that complemented Whitechapel’s relentless brutality.
They began with a few newer songs and then plunged into This Is Exile with a vengeance, delivering all the crushing power that put them at the forefront of their field.
I am personally just amazed at the amount of sound that emanated from the vocalists of all 4 bands…the guttural growls in particular were simply astonishing.
The only thing deeper than these throat shredding roars were the perfectly placed subsonic bass drops that were sprinkled throughout the performances of all the bands, a nice touch that pushed the right chaotic buttons at all the strategic spots in the savage breakdowns.
Whitechapel did it up right, bringing along 3 hungry bands who did their best to challenge the headliners to prove why they deserved that title.