“They can’t stop us let ’em try !! For heavy metal we will die”
By the previous lines Manowar set the undying law of metalheads, the only music fan community powerful enough to stand in the face of social, religious, cultural and even political feuds. According to that metal in Egypt survived, that’s why we have a variety of metal acts and gigs. Ladies and gentlemen, I present you, Neck Buster II rocked El Sawy Culturewheel on Tuesday February 18, 2014, 7 pm sharp. The night was a dual play between the very well known five pieces Progressive metal band Anarchy and the jinxed Deathcore act Mephostophilis. Outside of the stage metal lovers started swarming in and out with two questions dominating every discussion: “Isn’t it too-much-concerts for Anarchy already?” which relays on the band’s tight time gaps between a live show and another before their tour in South Africa, and a concert very recently – featuring Scarab – and the one we are reviewed for you!
Youngsters were majority among the crowd, a scene made me recall what it was like to be a junior metalhead back in the days, knowing no one and just searching for the adrenaline rush and thunder in one’s guts. The mild weather encouraged many to go discover the new comers – for most of the audience – Mephostophilis. Tickets in hand, horns up high, and we’re off!
To our surprise the openers were Anarchy, introduced us to the show with “The battle within” but guitarist Ahmed “The Dragon” Ra’ouf wasn’t at the right hand of Adham –the vocal- and replaced by Omar Damian – ex-Enraged, currently Devour – who proved himself a real Guitar Hero for memorizing and mastering the complicated riffs and solos the band known for.
Needless to say, Adham‘s stage persona, slithering moves and old-school-air-guitar became a personal trademark, in a way he manages to attract viewer’s attention to what the tunes tell relaying on his stage moves. Following this track came a fan favorite “12 Gates” along with an unexpected tech difficulty: Omar‘s guitar died! But audience met the unfortunate stoppage with supportive applause then the track started over perfectly and ended flawlessly.
After a tight performance of “Pandora”, Adham gave a fiery speech about support mentioning the key flaw in Egyptian metal scene support pattern: being too picky in who – and what – to support! He mentioned some of the rising little bands like the thrash metal band Gorynov who come all the way from Ismailia weekly to jam in Cairo, and the oriental metal new band Absolution.
The speech is something to stop at, as a die-hard fan and a person who stood for so long amidst the moshing waves of metal lovers in Egypt, I can tell that the biggest obstacle for ALL the bands is the element they primarily depend on: their audience who never give the proper support and summarizing their fandom in the “Like and Share” process. Fans of metal in Egypt unknowingly destroy their scene.
Speaking of support, there were many big faces in the concert hall to support the bands like Alshareif Marzeiban of Scarab, Marwan Shaaban of Wyvern, Mohamed Sa’eid and Zander of Destiny In Chains, a group of musicians who sent a clear message to the metal scene that: We are all in this together, we are one!
Keeping up the fervent atmosphere came “The Headbanger” an instrumental track worth its name, ending with a great finale “Albus Dumbledore” came on stage – Harry Potter joke? Get it? Anyone? – Or as Adham named his masked persona “3am 3abdou”, an old man with a huge white beard, crazy hair, and an asylum inmate suite. Closing the insane performance with “Asylum”, The band and fans had a rest preparing for what’s to come next.
Up next was Mephostophilis, a deathcore band with a load of bad luck, probably well known for the misfortune they face, remember when they were called off the stage after about 2 minutes of starting their performance back in 2012? THAT was the last time fans ever saw them live!
Starting with a pretty messy track, they introduced themselves to the crowd, notable the amount of groovedeath-core attending especially for them. Avoiding flaws of the starting track, they indulged more into the setlist proving how powerful can deathcore be especially when it’s new for Egyptian ears, track met approval and chemistry by the fans. Band’s vocal Mahmoud Hosni improved his growling style,
They finally got the drummer Ahmed Hesham instead of excessive use of drum machines. This man was the crown gem of the band’s performance, he managed to cover up for the mistakes and drops made by the guitarists excluding the Bass holder, Dimitry, who put a solid show appeared in all the tracks.
A string of fan favorites began with “Internal explosion in the chest” which was altered to give the drummer a full DRUM SOLO! And boy was he a monster. Full 10/10 to this guy!
Following to earlier track they played “Disposal of mankind” and “Brutality Shall remain” 2 new tracks previously published online. After a steady and stable performance they ended the show earning their stamp of approval by their new –and old- fans.
It was a long tiring day but that’s what it takes to form a TRUE music scene. Till the next time. See ya!
Reviewed by: Ahmed A. Ateyya
All Photo’s rights reserved to: Lina ElGohary