It’s been only about a year since Pestilence last came to Glasgow but no-one can complain about them returning so soon. Opening the tour in Scotland, performing their classic Consuming Impulse album (celebrating its 30th anniversary this year), the band are certain to infect the Classic Grand tonight.
Opening the gig is Bulgarian death metallers Grimaze. The room is tepid at first with only a few in attendance however, the crushing grooves and flying hair onstage get the ever-increasing crowd going. The band bring a blend of slamming groove riffs and jerky offbeat moments leading to increasing headbanging on the floor.
It’s rare to see a barrierless gig these days, especially when the stage is practically centimetres off the floor – and frontman Georgi Ivanov takes full advantage. Unafraid to get in punters’ faces as he screams and slam-dances his way through the band’s brutal death sound. Grimaze put on a great opening performance that’s certainly won over the Glasgow crowd – definitely a band to watch.
The Classic Grand may have began the evening sparse, but by the time Pestilence hit the stage, the room is a packed sweatbox of rabid fans. Frontman Patrick Mameli takes a swig from his 4 pint milk bottle as “Proliferous Souls” plays over the speakers. The band launch into “Dehydrated” and heads begin to bang.
The crowd roars between the Consuming Impulse classics. There’s a feelgood vibe in the air as the crowd banter with Mameli, who jokes back between songs. The madness begins by “Out of the Body” as the mosh pits fully open, and by “Reduced to Ashes”, the venue is thrashed as the pits rage with stage divers flying above. The energy is at fever pitch with no sign of stopping down. The band are on top form, and their signature sound is crushing, as their tight riffing and shredding solos are on point. Pestilence end the set with a handful of classics, the intense mosh of “Secrecies of Horror” and final number “Land of Tears” making for a particular highlight.
The crowd clamour for more as Pestilence leave the stage, and it’s a shame the gig had to end so early. However the band put on an awesome performance, leaving Glasgow well and truly infected. Here’s hoping the plague returning is an annual event.