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'The Bay Calls For Blood/A Thrashumentary' CD/DVD
(Nuclear Blast)
Out Now

Johnny Main

johnny main

death angel

October 2013 saw Californian thrashers Death Angel release their seventh studio album, 'The Dream Calls For Blood'. The album, which was three years in the making, is arguably the most successful of the band's career so far and raised their game and their reputation as one of the USA's leading thrash bands.

The subsequent tour (which is still ongoing) has taken them from their hometown of San Francisco right across America and then over to Europe and Australia for a series of headlining shows and festival appearances before they, no doubt, head back to the US for a second batch of dates.

With the band's current set list including a generous selection of tracks from 'The Dream Calls For Blood' album alongside classic tracks like 'Thicker Than Blood' and 'Mistress Of Pain', the current live shows are being hailed as one of the best the band have undertaken. Lucky, then, that the band decided to record and release this, what is in essence their third live album, a show which was recorded at Slim's in their hometown of San Francisco on 27th December 2014 in front of 500 or so lucky fans.

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Unfortunately, the album, cleverly titled 'The Bay Calls For Blood', doesn't contain the whole of the concert, which is a shame. I mean, if you're going to all the trouble of recording a show, then why not release the whole show and not just edited highlights? A minor quibble yes, but I think it's still a valid point. The tracks that have been included, however, are heavily weighted towards the new album, which is understandable, but a few more classic or older songs wouldn't have gone amiss though.

With regards to the tracks that are included on the album itself, though, it's well produced effort and sees the band on top form, no doubt due to being buoyed by the hometown crowd and the fact the gig was so intimate. The crowd are audible in the between song gaps, and it's clear from the band that they're on fire during the performance, and give nothing less than one hundred percent to their performance. I've never heard Mark Osegueda's vocals sound better and the mix between the guitars and drums gives everyone a chance to step up and be heard.

Of course, the live album is really an extra on what many consider to be a long overdue visual record of the bands history from 1982-2012. The documentary, cunningly titled 'A Thrashumentary', tells the story of Death Angel from its inception in 1982 to the present day through archive and contemporary interview footage with most members of the band.

death angel

During the main feature, with a running time in excess of two and a half hours, pretty much everything is spoken about. Each album is a separate chapter point and is discussed at length, as are things like the touring accident during the 'Act III' tour where the driver fell asleep causing the bus to roll over leaving drummer Andy Galeon badly injured and the recruitment of bass player Damien Sisson and drummer Will Carroll to the line up.

The documentary was directed, shot and edited by Tommy Jones of Videohammer Studios (who has worked with Slayer, Coal Chamber and Carcass in the past) and mostly takes the talking heads style of presentation with copious amounts of live footage, both professionally shot and home-movie style footage. Of course, it doesn't just feature band members, as it also includes contemporary interviews with Chuck Billy (Testament), Andreas Kisser (Speultura) and Jeff Walker (Carcass).

For me, it's unfortunate that some of the complete live clips weren't added onto the disc as a bonus feature. The fact that they've included the complete live version of 'Mistress Of Pain' live from Scion Rock Festival in California but nothing else is, I think, something of wasted opportunity as they could have added value for money by adding in some full live tracks, or even a selection of promo video clips.

On the whole, though, it's an excellent documentary and is a must-have for not only every Death Angel fan, but any Metal fan as it lays bare the true life struggles and triumphs of a band who are often, unfairly, over-looked when the great thrash Metal bands are listed off.

You can see an official Trailer for 'A Thrashumentary' here:

You can see Death Angel live here:
Thursday 23rd July – Free & Easy Festival @ Backstage (with Sepultura)
Friday 24th July – K7, Berlin (with Sepultura)
Saturday 25th July – Headbanger's Open Air, Brande-Hörnerkirchen
Sunday 26th July – KB18, Copenhagen (with Flotsam & Jetsam)
Monday 27th July – Revolver, Oslo (with Flotsam & Jetsam)
Tuesday 28th July – Sticky Fingers, Gothenburg (with Flotsam & Jetsam)
Wednesday 29th July - Debaser Medis, Stockholm (with Flotsam & Jetsam)
Friday 31st July – Wacken Open Air, Wacken
Saturday 1st August – Schollenpop Festival, Scheveningen
Sunday 2nd August – Covent Garden Studios, Éragny
Tuesday 4th August – Slade Rooms, Wolverhampton (with Mordred)
Wednesday 5th August – Marble Factory, Bristol (with Queensryche)
Thursday 6th August – Electric Ballroom, London (with Queensryche & Armored Saint)
Friday 7th August – Concorde 2, Brighton (with Queensryche)
Saturday 8th August – Alcatraz Metal Festival, Kortrijk
Sunday 9th August – Sylak Festival, Saint Maurice de Gourdans
Tuesday 11th August – Turock, Essen
Wednesday 12th August – Summer Breeze, Dinkelsbuhl

'The Bay Calls For Blood' Tracklist:
Left For Dead
Buried Alive
The Dream Calls For Blood
Execution/Don't Save Me
Caster Of Shame
Territorial Instinct/Bloodlust

Death Angel are:
Mark Osegueda – Vocals
Rob Cavestany – Guitars
Ted Aguilar – Guitars
Damien Sisson – Bass Guitar
Will Carroll – Drums

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