Since changing their name from ‘Cryptic Warning’ in 2006, ‘Revocation’ have been on a steady upwards trajectory. Releasing an astounding 7 albums in 10 years, the quality of their output has never dipped as they have continued to push the boundaries of technical death metal. This year marks the bands first ever European Tour as a headline act which sees them returning to The Underworld alongside ‘Rivers Of Nihil’, ‘Soreption’ and ‘Archspire’.
The Underworld 16/12/2018:
It is a sold out show tonight in Camden and the torrential rain in Londons streets does not appear to be dampening anyones spirits tonight as the queue for The Underworld arches around the street. Unfortunately due to some logistical errors, we are unable to make it in time to see ‘Rivers Of Nihil’ or ‘Soreption’, but we can take comfort in the knowledge that they played to a packed out venue from the very start.
Fortunately, we are able to make it inside just in time for Canadian tech-death quintet ‘Archspire’. Despite our best intentions, ‘Archspire’ are a band that we have never actually listened to before and boy are we in for a treat tonight. From the moment that the band step on stage with 8-string guitars and 6-string basses, we know that we are in for a set of technical riffing, but we were not prepared for the level of quality to be anywhere near this high. Within the first 5 minutes, we are already die-hard fans and it is clear that we are not alone as The Underworld transforms into a storm of flying bodies. The constant sweeping guitar licks and mind bogglingly complex melodies are extremely impressive, but also never seem out of place or unnecessary. Vocalist Oliver Aleron screams at an astonishingly fast pace that sounds not unlike Nathan Explosion of ‘Dethklok’ fame; meanwhile his devastating pig squeals punch through with such an intense impact they could blow a hole straight through your chest. Despite all of their technical proficiencies though, what truly makes ‘Archspire’ stand out is how much fun they are. From their entertaining on stage banter to Aleron holding sings instructing us to “applaud” during the many guitar solos, their enthusiasm is highly infectious and it is only as their set comes to a close that we remember that they are not the band headlining tonight.
Suffice to say, ‘Revocation’ have their work cut out for them. This is a challenge that they are all to eager to embrace though. Where ‘Archspire’ had the added bonus of fun and entertainment, ‘Revocation’ counter that with full on carnage and aggression. It has been over 5 years since ‘Revocation’ last played The Underworld when they supported ‘Dying Fetus’ and this is their first time headlining the iconic venue; a fact that they are all too eager to share. This may be their debut headline tour in Europe, but the relentless touring and non-stop writing has ensured that ‘Revocation’ are a solid unit that sound monolithic. Alternating vocal lines, guitar hero style dual guitar solos and thunderous riffs all indicate that the Boston four-piece are not showing any signs of slowing down. The set is interspersed with some mesmerising instrumental sections, and they finish the night with a monumental rendition of ‘Chaos of Thorns’ straight into ‘Witch Trials’; a maelstrom of shredding solos, bone shattering riffs and blast beats. ‘Revocation’ have come incredibly far in such a short period of time and we cannot wait to see where they go next.
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