The sold-out signs are up, the queues lengthy, all for a hotly anticipated show matched only by the gates of hell opening. Thy Art Is Murder are back in town on their Human Target tour.
Lion Arts Factory has probably never seen anything this big. The band have brought their own lighting rigs, speakers, everything but the kitchen sink. Hell, they’ve even brought their mates in I Am, Malevolence and Carnifex along too.
Openers I Am are that heavy and brutal that the mosh pit breaks open the fire door setting the alarm off. Not that anyone noticed through the hail of Satan’s heaviest riffs becoming the soundtrack to the mosh pits own version of gladiators at battle.
The air raid siren warning of an impending force wails and Malevolence hit the stage to Malicious Intent and Life Sentence. The band is the extreme version of hardcore mixed with doom riffs you could ask for. Vocalist Alex Taylor the puppet master as the crowd follows his hand gestures to either clap, create a circle pit or bounce as the band tear through a short set list finishing on the epic On Broken Glass.
Carnifex arrive for the first time in eleven years and there is palpable excitement in the crowd for their return. As the sound of sirens, bombs and gunfire reverberates around the room, Carnifex open with World War X and Drown Me In Blood. They are brutal, direct and fast and the crowd, by now sweaty and drenched, just keep giving more back. Old school numbers like Slit Wrist Savior sit side by side with newer tracks like Graveside Confessions and the circle pits forming progressively grow and ferocity.
As the soundtrack to the Vengabus starts, it can only mean one thing. Thy Art Is Murder are about to take centre stage. Opening with Death Squad Anthem, a spectacular light show illuminates the room. It’s loud and hot yet vocalist CJ McMahon is the coolest person in the room, unfazed by the anarchy ensuing.
Make America Hate Again and Human Target make the floor vibrate with the drums in the latter a literal barrage of brutality akin to being attacked by machine guns. By the time New Gods is performed, there are crowd surfers, people falling over and sweat dripping down the walls.
CJ knows this is his crowd and they hang on his every word as they finish as he mentioned, play the songs, no encore and get off the stage. Finishing with Chemical Christ, every word is sung by everyone in the room and with that Thy Art Is Murder depart for another town to conquer.
Live Review By Iain McCallum