Virtually Dead – 17 June 2011

Virtually Dead, Rocket Room – 17 June 2011

Review by Trease Riot

Friday night saw Perth’s heavy hangout, The Rocket Room, blast its patrons with an array of Heavy Rock and Metal, guaranteed to warm punters escaping the wintry June elements.

Kicking off proceedings were Gates of Perdition, a four piece melodic thrash outfit combining death metal elements with just a hint of groove. Formed in 2010, Gates are relative newcomers to Perth’s metal scene, but have managed to gig frequently in 2011 due to standout guitar talent with a knack for catchy, mosh- worthy riffage. Songs ‘Annihilation’ and ‘Reaper’ certainly showed off the bands song writing ability, with the latter introduced by melodic dual guitar work before launching into a thrash-tastic chorus. However, ‘Mourn the Dead’ was easily the standout track, providing the right amounts of crunch and bounce to get the audience head- banging maniacally. 

One of Perth’s busiest bands of late, Empires Laid Waste, definitely made their presence known with a blistering set of melodic death metal. The band have tapped into a classic formula of Decapitated- like guitar work, interlaced with slower melodic parts that captivate the audience with a brief moment of calm, before the artillery launches its final assault blasting machine- gun riffs at everyone in sight.

The technicality of Empires is brutally sewn together courtesy of the drumming; impeccably tight, precise and LOUD! With a new record slated for release in the coming months and an East Coast tour booked in August, Empires are certainly an outfit to look out for.

Gojira fans were treated to a rendition of ‘Toxic Garbage Island’ thanks to heavy stalwarts, Sins of the Father. It’s hard to categorise this chilled out bunch; a blend of stoner groove and straight up death metal would summarise Sins best. Knowing that these guys party as hard as they play, the listener is able to hear the absolute authenticity in the songs, which has enabled Sins to become a Perth metal staple since starting out in 2007. After the blistering sets of the opening acts, punters were ground down with tracks from Sins’ self- titled debut album. Even more- so with the inclusion of an Alice in Chains number, ‘Check my Brain’. The crowd were thoroughly enjoying themselves, mouthing the lyrics and grooving to the main riff: classic sludge in all its dirty glory!

Anyone who may have been a little too chilled out by this point were sure awakened by Reapers Riddle. A dabble of George A. Romero, a touch of Rob Zombie and encompassing the stylings of Mercyful Fate, these guys dive into the cauldron of classic heavy rock. More than once did I notice people nodding along to the music as they walked around, easily getting into the groove thanks to the tight, solid rhythms. The catchy hooks in ‘Fall Away’ commanded attention, while ‘Devils Fire’ was reminiscent of James Hetfield’s South Park cameo when Kenny was sent to hell. While the metal elite may not get the Reapers formula, they certainly deliver a classic horror- influenced repertoire with a stadium rock sound. 

The diversity of acts tearing up the Rocket Room made ensured it remained at full capacity throughout the night. Hopefully Perth’s music venues will take note of what is an absolutely thriving metal scene and more nights like this can take place.