By Dan Potter
The Vogue Theatre
August 25, 2017
VANCOUVER – Excitement and anticipation was in the air as fans lined up outside the Vogue, eager to watch a much-hyped new band. Dead Cross is a supergroup composed of four metal and punk veterans who served their time in some of the hardest touring bands to ever go out on the road. Expectations were high for an explosive and permanent existence confirming performance even though they collectively have only one release under their belts, clocking in at a mere 27 minutes.
Show openers Secret Chiefs 3 tore through their set of Middle Eastern tinged Prog-Rock instrumentals laying down some relentless odd meter grooves that went well with their black hooded robe stage attire. Their hypnotic bombast was made complete by a crazed rendition of John Carpenter’s “Halloween Theme,” mixing elements of Slayer and Merzbow with a drummer on the verge of a conniption fit. So with that Mike Patton and company prepared to take the stage right into the thick of it again having survived both Texas law enforcement and a skateboarding accident.
The drum set of metal master Dave Lombardo looked primed for perfection with all its angles aligned and ready to act as great conjurer of some astral beast. All four members took their places under the din of scorching microphone feedback and blasted into the set opener, showing tight chemistry right from the start. Patton, sporting a band-aid and some sutures over the brow from his earlier skateboarding mishap, really laid into his signature wounded banshee screams. After becoming the wounded banshee, he molested the vocal signal off and on with a selection of effects boxes creating a wall off screams for the band to cut through with their equally thunderous might.
By mid-set it was clear these guys were meant to play together as they tore through the songs like a hurricane making landfall. Each member had their unique place such as the bassist who seemed to be able to find the sexy strut buried deep in the Hardcore noise damage they unrelentingly unleashed by swaggering across the stage to the punk like it was funk. Patton was his bipolar self throughout much of the performance, chatting up the audience by friendly referring to us Canucks as “loonies” and saluting members of the mosh pit to the title of “ice monkeys.”
One minute gloomy and professional the next circling his pen like a crazed gorilla growling at the mosh pit, Patton stole the show shouting at one point “time for some slow jams mutherfuckers” before giving us his creepy gangster rasp. Offering up a vital slab of resistance all night long they filled their encore with a fitting tribute to American politics by covering The Dead Kennedys “Nazi Punks Fuck Off” and then topped it off with those famous eleven notes to Slayers “Raining Blood” and bang, that was it.dave lombardo, dead cross, mike patton, Slayer, The Vogue Theatre, Vogue Theatre