Over 10,000 fervent metal enthusiasts gathered under the night sky to partake in an unforgettable spectacle headlined by none other than the hard rock and heavy metal legend, Rob Zombie. Alongside him, the stage was graced by the presence of the iconic Alice Cooper, the electrifying Ministry, and the raucous Filter. This past Sunday, West Palm Beach, Florida, became the epicenter of the Freaks On Parade tour, merging the realms of metal and masquerade in a perfectly orchestrated chaos.

Alice Cooper’s performance was nothing short of extraordinary. He effortlessly tamed a boa constrictor, outwitted a towering Frankenstein, and endured electric shocks with unyielding resolve. He escaped from a straitjacket only to face a guillotine, Cooper’s onstage antics reached their pinnacle when he was gleefully decapitated by Marie Antoideath, portrayed by his wife, Sheryl Cooper.

Boasting a rich legacy spanning more than half a century in the realm of rock ‘n’ roll stagecraft, Cooper dazzled the audience with a 70-minute tour de force. His show seamlessly wove together iconic classics like “I’m Eighteen” and “No More Mr. Nice Guy” with lesser-known treasures from his middle years. Commencing with the electrifying “Lock Me Up” from his 1986 album “Raise Your Fist and Yell,” Cooper found his artistic zenith midway through the performance, delivering a string of early-’90s hits, including “Hey Stoopid,” “Lost in America,” and “Snakebite.”

Cooper’s band executed flawlessly, with guitarists Ryan Roxie, Tommy Henriksen, and the virtuoso Nita Strauss delivering a tidal wave of sound. Bassist Chuck Garric’s harmonious backing vocals completed this musical powerhouse.

Nita Strauss stood out prominently among the young guitar maestros of her era, enthralling the crowd with a mesmerizing solo act that showcased her prowess in tapping, sweep-picking, and whammy bar wizardry. Her limitless enthusiasm and undeniable skill elevated her to an essential role within Cooper’s ensemble, and the audience couldn’t contain their excitement, showering her with thunderous applause when she made her entrance during the grand finale, “School’s Out.”

Cooper’s set sparkled with satire and vaudeville, while Rob Zombie’s performance epitomized unbridled extravagance. It was a sensory overload of scorching flames, grotesque demon babies, and twisting devil statues. Zombie, adorned in fringe, gyrated across the stage, commanding an industrial metal tempest that would befit the darkest depths of hell.

His set, characterized by droning dirges and horror movie aesthetics, was a relentless onslaught of raunchiness and grotesquery. Tracks like “Superbeast” and “Living Dead Girl” struck the perfect balance, creating a dangerous and devilishly fun atmosphere.

During “Thunder Kiss ’65,” Zombie had the audience light up their phones, quipping, “it’s hot as hell out here!” Indeed, Zombie’s blazing pyrotechnics were merely a fraction of the sweltering 106-degree heat that earlier acts Filter and Ministry had to contend with. Yet, they rose to the occasion, each delivering formidable performances. Filter, led by Richard Patrick, roared through hits like “Take a Picture” and “Hey Man Nice Shot,” while Ministry’s Al Jourgensen whipped the crowd into a frenzy with incendiary tracks like “Stigmata” and the climactic “Revenge,” performed for the first time since 1984.

Both opening acts displayed headlining-worthy prowess, setting the stage for an incredible evening of music. The show, as a whole, was a sensory feast, a symphony of visuals and sounds that left an indelible mark. I wholeheartedly recommend catching this tour if it rolls into your town.

The Freaks on Parade Tour will continue to rampage across the United States for the next month, concluding on September 24th in Phoenix. For those yet to experience it, this tour promises an unparalleled fusion of music and mayhem that should not be missed.

Alice Cooper, 8/28/23, iThink Financial Amphitheater, West Palm Beach
1. “Lock Me Up”
2. “No More Mr. Nice Guy”
3. “I’m Eighteen”
4. “Under My Wheels”
5. “Billion Dollar Babies”
6. “Snakebite”
7. “Lost in America”
8. “Hey Stoopid”
9. “Poison”
10. “Feed My Frankenstein”
11. “Devil’s Food” / Nita Strauss guitar solo
12. “Black Widow” jam
13. “Ballad of Dwight Fry”
14. “Killer” (band only)
15. “I Love the Dead”
16. “Elected”
17. “School’s Out” (with “Another Brick in the Wall”)

Rob Zombie, 8/28/23, iThink Financial Amphitheater, West Palm Beach
1. “The Triumph of King Freak (A Crypt of Preservation and Superstition)”
2. “Feel So Numb”
3. “Well, Everybody’s Fucking in a U.F.O.”
4. “What Lurks on Channel X?”
5. “Superbeast”
6. “Demonoid Phenomenon”
7. Drum solo
8. “The Lords of Salem”
9. “House of 1000 Corpses”
10. “More Human Than Human”
11. “Living Dead Girl”
12. “Thunder Kiss ’65”
13. “Dragula”


Tue Aug 29 – Raleigh, NC – Coastal Credit Union Music
Park at Walnut Creek
Wed Aug 30 – Virginia Beach, VA – Veterans United
Home Loans Amphitheater
Fri Sep 01 – Tinley Park, IL – Hollywood Casino
Sat Sep 02 – Des Moines, IA – Wells Fargo Arena
Tue Sep 05 – Clarkston, MI – Pine Knob Music Theatre
Wed Sep 06 – Toronto, ON – Budweiser Stage
Fri Sep 08 – Scranton, PA – The Pavilion at Montage
Sat Sep 09 – Wantagh, NY – Northwell Health at Jones
Beach Theater
Sun Sep 10 – Hartford, CT – The XFINITY Theatre Tue Sep 12 – Nashville, TN – Bridgestone Arena
Sat Sep 16 – Englewood, CO – Fiddler’s Green
Amphitheatre *
Tue Sep 19 – Ridgefield, WA – RV Inn Style Resorts
Wed Sep 20 – Auburn, WA – White River Amphitheatre
Fri Sep 22 – Concord, CA – Concord Pavilion
Sat Sep 23 – Anaheim, CA – Honda Center
Sun Sep 24 – Phoenix, AZ – Talking Stick Resort


Cannibal Corpse, Dark Funeral, Immolation, Black Anvil – Toronto Show Review Nov 6, 2022

Written By Timothy Voldemars Johnston

Standing on my balcony yesterday as the sun set, gazing upon a sky on fire, I knew this night was going to be something special. There was just something in the air and I was not disappointed.

It took me about 45 minutes to get downtown to the Danforth Music Hall, as traffic sucked, as usual when I am trying to actually get somewhere on time. I missed the opening band. I will say however, that I have seen Black Anvil several times and… not my type of music, so not a big deal for me. I heard good things from people standing outside though. I’m assuming they were appreciated by those who did get to see them. I did however get there just in time to witness the mighty Immolation.

Immolation is tied with Deicide for being my favorite Death Metal band of all time so, I would have been very angry if I had missed any of their set (even though Ive seen them only a couple months earlier at the Velvet Underground. They are a band I will always try to see, no matter how often they tour and did they ever destroy this night. Wow! What a pummeling, steamrolling, crushing performance. While not my favorite performance ever from them it was definitely up there. I had some trouble making out the riffs, and that was unfortunate, but it was great to see them in front of such a huge crowd getting the appreciation they deserve. My only regret is that they only played for 30 minutes. But did they ever put a lot into those 30 minutes.

Many who know me understand Im not a huge fan of Death Metal in general. It’s just not my thing. But somehow this band hits me different. They create such an amazing and unique atmosphere with their music. Their guitarist, Robert Vigna, is probably in my top 5 favorite guitarists of all time. His leads
are just perfection in my opinion.

After Immolation ended and a bunch of people moved back from the front, I moved up a bit with my buddy to get a better spot to witness what was to follow. The reason I came to this show. The lights went down, the stage went red, and out marched the Ineffable Kings of Darkness, Dark Funeral. I immediately had flashbacks to when we, Eclipse Eternal, opened for them at the Opera House in 2007, the first time I ever saw them. A smile, teeth showing, crept onto my face. I knew what was to come.
Raging, blistering fast, raw yet melodic, memorable Black Metal. And that is what they delivered. No holds barred, they owned the stage. Definitely the best performance I’ve ever seen by them and the audience was won over. Screams, cheers and horns up after every song. I will admit, I was a little concerned that this audience, which was obviously mostly Death Metal fans, would not appreciate the offering provided, but I was happily surprised. When, near the end of their set, Dark Funeral’s newest singer waved their black banner, the audience erupted in applause and my night was made.

After they left the stage, I headed outside to get some much-needed air and to cool down as it was hotter than hell in the venue. 1,500 (?) people packed into the venue was a lot. Definitely the biggest metal concert I’d been to in a very long time.

Outside, I met up with a Toronto Metal stalward, Beast! Back when I first started playing shows, many years ago, Beast had been at almost every show and knew everyone. Then he disappeared for a couple years. Took Cannibal Corpse to bring him back out. Was good catching up. Then back inside I went. I found my buddy again, this time much further back and on came the headliner Cannibal Corpse. Now, I will fully admit, I’m not a big fan (see earlier where I said I wasn’t really into Death Metal). I really only like a couple songs by them, and those are the really old ones, so, of what I saw, I will say, live, they are amazing at what they do and the audience went absolutely wild for them.

The pit was crazy. The band played with pure conviction and based on the reaction of everyone around me, I’ll say they did exactly what everyone wanted. I stayed around for several songs, got to hear one of my favorites, and then took off to the sound of wild cheering and craziness continuing behind me. Now that’s a metal show. First sold-out concert I’ve been to in many years. Definitely one to remember.


Amigo the DEVIL – Oct 31 Concert Review

Written By Timothy Voldemars Johnston

What a crazy show. Bizarre, moving, infuriating, hilarious, dark, hot as hell and wild. I’ve never been to a show quite like it. Let me go back to the beginning.

I got there almost an hour early. There was already a line outside Lee’s Palace, of maybe 50 people. It was spitting cold waves of light, almost mist-like rain. After what seemed like forever, now cold, wet and feeling like I might have made the wrong decision about coming out. he lineup, which was now significantly longer, finally started moving. It was a slow process, but I finally got in, after getting carded LOL!

I immediately go to the merch area and grab a CD from the opener, Willi Carlisle, who is
sitting at the desk (I didn’t recognize him in his Halloween costume, which was a demented looking Hobo clown), and then grabbed an Amigo the Devil CD.

The venue starts to really fill up at this point. I get to a spot I like, and the wait began. More and more people pack in. It’s an odd mix of people for sure. Lots of hipster types, some really normal-looking folks and a smattering of goths and metalheads. Some people are dressed up, but I’d say less than a quarter of the people there and I’m not dressed up either. Just didn’t feel it this year. For the first time ever. Whatever.

After an hour of standing there all wet and clammy Im beginning to getting really warmed up with the HUNDREDS of people who showed up for the show. I’m not pleased.

Finally, the lights go low and out comes Willi. Now, I didn’t know what to expect.
I had only heard his music for the first time the day of the show. Country with a dark edge, but still, very country, twang and all. I did however like what I had heard (which is why I got the cd). So, he comes out, dressed as the clown I had bought the CD from and it’s just him. Alone. His only instruments are a harmonica, a hand thingy, an acoustic guitar, an accordian and I believe a bango made an appearance at one point. Now, I’m not sure if it was just the heat, but both the musicians performing tonight totally reminded me of comedians I really like. Willi reminded me of the late great Chris Farley from SNL, if Chris was to do dark Country, lol. It was super fascinating to watch his mannerisms
and for whatever reason, it totally worked. Especially with him dressed as a clown. For the most part, I really enjoyed his set. A great mix of dark American folk tunes and older style dark country, mixed with lots of off-beat humor. Great voice. My only criticism was his bringing politics into it. I didn’t come to hear about someone’s politics. Regardless of whether I agree with them or not. This show in particular isn’t the place, and that bothered me. Still, overall, I was impressed. Lots of charisma.

Then it was Amigo’s turn. He had a whole band with him, and they were all dressed as demented, bloody, psychotic looking, nuns, and they were on fire! Going from heavy as Hell songs, to super depressing songs, to funny songs and back without any drop in energy at all. The banter in between songs was just perfectly off kilter and definitely lent to the authenticity of the performances.

Every member of the band played like they loved what they were doing, just totally into it. It’s really rare, to see a band enjoying themselves as much as the audience, but this was it. The demented sing-a-long parts were just amazing. The highlight being the sing-a-long of “Life’s just a Joke and Death is the punchline” which totally summed up the whole night and, again, not sure if this was just my overheated brain, but I swear Amigo live is like a mix of Carlos Mencia, Fluffy (Gabrial Iglesias) and Mitch Hedberg (three of my favorite comedians) if they performed dark as hell death folk/country music. He had jokes just like they would make (not rip offs of course, but ones that you could see all of them making) and the mannerisms were just all there. It was hilarious and totally worked with the music.

The only really dark part of their performance was when the singer was telling a super sad, emotional story of a friend’s untimely demise and a member of the audience started heckling him. Not sure of all the things said, but from what I heard, it was super disrespectful. I did hear him at one point yell “Thrash Metal” and “just play the song”…amongst some other things I won’t write. The audience turned on the guy really quick, lots of yelling and after Amigo just said screw it, didn’t finish the story and started playing and there was a bunch of yelling and shoving by the crazy guy and Amigo actually stopped the set and jumped into the audience to escort the crazy person out of the building. Once Amigo got back on stage, it took a bit for me to get into the show, as I was upset and felt embarrassed for him, like I felt really,
really bad for him, as his story was obviously very painful to recall, but the audience roared their appreciation with waves of applause and cheering that wouldn’t stop which turned the situation around and saved the show. Amigo rallied and put on an amazing performance right until the end. One show I will never forget. If you get a chance to see them live,
do it.


Heilung, An Experience To Remember

Written By Timothy Voldemars

Photo By Timothy Voldemars

What an incredible night. Heilung was more than music, it was an experience. It was like Wardruna mixed with Cirque du soleil (in a good way).

So, to start my story off, let’s start at the beginning. I got off work at 4 and by 5, I was headed downtown in Toronto Ontario. As it was rush hour traffic, I knew I needed to give extra time to get down there and wanted to be at the venue early as I’ve never been there before. I arrived around 6, found parking easy enough, grabbed a quick Subway sandwich for dinner and headed to the venue.

The Meridian Hall is huge. Looks like a high class theater venue. Odd choice for a show like this I thought for a band that is so earth/forest/nature based, so, my hopes were somewhat lessoned. I got in the venue at 7 and headed right into the merch line. It wasn’t long before I got into a conversation about music with two fascinating folks behind me and my evening started looking up. It must have been 30 minutes before we got to the front of the line. I got myself a hoodie and a couple CDs.

As I wandered the lobby I ran into some friends and had good conversation with them. Then it was time. Headed into the auditorium and found my seat. I started up a conversation with the people beside me and settled in. Then I get a text from a good friend who is on her way and wanted to know if the show had started. I told her not yet and I’d let her know when the lights went off. Still having time I checked my Facebook. I saw another one of my friends was coming to the show. I liked the post. Not 30 seconds later I look beside me and there she is sitting down beside me LOL! What! That’s crazy. And she is such a fascinating person to talk with in person so, the Norns definitely had a hand in this. Shortly after, lights go down. The invocation begins. I text My other friend to let her know the shows about to start. From there the journey of Heilung began.

A trance-like journey back in time. Their rythmic beats and chanting building and changing, the ebb and flow drawing us all in. It was beautiful, it was magical, it was awe-inspiring and when the final song began, a wave of bodies rose and I rose with then, cheering and swaying to the beats. It was something else. An experience I wish you had all been able to feel.

After the show I wandered and ran into friends and hung out for a bit outside. Overall, quite an amazing night. And the venue turned out to be perfect for the show. The sound was amazing.

Photo By Timothy Voldemars
Photo By Timothy Voldemars
Photo By Timothy Voldemars
The Concert Critic

The Concert Critic Reviews The East Coast RedNeckRun Tour Featuring Obituary, Gruesome, 200 Stab Wounds and Cadaverous

Written By Braddon S. Williams

On this date in history, 4/4/2022, Hi-Fi in Indianapolis hosted an evening of pure brutality as Obituary, Gruesome, 200 Stab Wounds, and Cadaverous combined forces to bring a smorgasbord of extreme death metal flavors to the table.

Indy’s own Cadaverous opened the show with an efficiency and ferocity that set the template for all that would follow. The power trio is not the preferred format for a death metal band, but Cadaverous made it work.

200 Stab Wounds followed up with a much more thrash-oriented variant of the death metal style. Similar to the “fast” zombies in horror films, this style of death guarantees the band will catch and kill the listener at a much quicker pace. In the months following this show 200 Stab Wounds have generated a lot of buzz in the metal community.

Both Cadaverous and 200 Stab Wounds are relatively new bands and welcome additions to the scene, always a good circumstance. Gruesome have been around a bit longer, and the self-proclaimed tribute to Death (the seminal band that influenced myriad fans of the genre that bears their name) took things to the next level with their ferocious twin lead guitar onslaught.

At this point I have to reiterate what I had previously said about the Hi-Fi’s superior sound and staging; every band I have seen at Hi-Fi has benefitted from the excellence of this club. I’m sure these opening bands would have been fine at a lesser venue, but Hi-Fi complimented everything that was good about them and elevated them beyond what they are accustomed to.

My previous experience with Obituary was at another fine club, Bogart’s in Cincinnati, but they were a support act for that show (and a killer one for certain) and as the headliner at an arguably superior venue, Obituary brought their “A” game. I was both amused and thrilled to see the band hit the stage for a buildup riff that went on for several minutes before singer John Tardy made his entrance. This was a technique famously utilized by James Brown in his heyday and it was proven to be a fine entrance for a death metal legend in a completely different musical universe. Tardy even borrowed deceased comedy icon Sam Kinison’s signature move of emitting a mighty primal scream away from the microphone. Luckily my wife and I were in the front row (again!) and Tardy basically yelled right in our faces! Throughout the set, Tardy tirelessly prowled the stage and acted as hype man for his bandmates and showed the appreciative crowd his enormous grin repeatedly. Donald Tardy’s drums were bestial and perfectly crushing, as was Terry Butler’s glorious bass tone. The guitars of Trevor Peres (rhythm) and Ken Andrews (lead) were ferocious, chunky, and lethal, and Obituary delivered a monstrous set of death metal elite tunes. The band seemed relaxed and fully aware of the pristine sound, lights, and stage setup.

It seems that Hi-Fi will be a club I will eagerly attend for a variety of musical styles. If they can make death metal sound that surgically clean, I can only imagine what they can do for more subtle styles of music.