We all know that 2022 was and is still the year of great music. We’ve gotten tons of new releases this year from many bands. Two of those bands being Phobophilic (Enveloping Absurdity) and Undeath (It’s Time… To Rise from the Grave).
Both bands came through Chapel Hill, NC, at Local 506 on November 16th, 2022. Undeath is currently on their first co-headlining tour with 200 Stab Wounds, with Enforced and Phobophilic as support. The former released Slave to the Scalpel in 2021, which was one of my favorite albums of the year. Undeath and 200 Stab Wounds are some of my current favorite death metal bands. Both groups are waving the flags for new school death metal (which we both know I’ve been loving).
I saw 200 Stab Wounds a couple of months ago when they supported Obituary’s East Coast Redneck Run. But this was my first time seeing Phobophilic, Enforced, and Undeath. I’ve been highly anticipating this show, and it didn’t disappoint. It was a night full of meaty riffs, hair flipping, brutal moshpits, and riffs!
This band may sound familiar to you — they are one of the bands I play in The Catacombs in The Saw’s Butcher Shop. At first, I didn’t know this band was on this tour. But I was ecstatic when I found out that they were. While Phobophilic may be a newer death metal band on the chopping block, they sound like straight old-school (kind of doomy) death metal.
I’ve always wondered what it would be like to be at a death metal show in the ‘90s. I’ve heard stories from my dad about how all the bands would headbang — that was their stage presence; their entire show. And that night, as I watched Phobophilic, I finally got it. I don’t think I ever saw the band NOT headbanging. Everyone in the crowd was headbanging along with them or bobbing their heads. They even got a pretty fast circle pit going. This was the best way to start the show. Phobophilic got the crowd warmed up!
Now, I’m going to be honest. I had never heard of this band until the show, and shame on me! Enforced kicks major ass. If there were one word to describe Enforced, it would be RIFFS. This band has some killer riffs that make you want to head bang and mosh. Their riffs reminded me of Slayer and Chris Barnes-era Cannibal Corpse. But that’s not all. Their frontman is phenomenal. He never stepped away from the crowd — he was constantly engaging with them.
This was when many people began moshing, crowd surfing, and stage diving. People were losing their minds to this band — and for good reason! Someone even threw their bra on stage, and the vocalist wore it around his head and neck. It was hilarious! The crowd was getting antsy at this point. But the beatings were just beginning.
200 Stab Wounds
The first time I saw 200 Stab Wounds, I was near the back of the venue, slammed packed with a dozen of other people. It was still an awesome set, but I wanted to see the crowd and get in on the action this time. At Local 506, there are metal tables and a bench on one side of the venue. I somehow got onto the bench, so I had a bird’s eye view of the crowd and the stage — it was the perfect spot! I could still push people inside the pit if I wanted, but I had a great view of the stage. No one was blocking the view!
As soon as 200 Stab Wounds hit the stage, the crowd went NUTS. The crowd was moshing, but in addition to doing your traditional pushpit, they even had hardcore dancing going on. It looked like a prison fight broke out when the band started playing Itty Bitty Pieces and Tow Rope Around the Throat. Limbs were swinging everywhere, and bodies were flying! What a beating this set was. 200 Stab Wounds will never disappoint.
It’s the band we’ve all been waiting for. It’s time… for some more beatings! 200 Stab Wounds absolutely beat the crap out of the crowd with their performance, but the crowd didn’t stop. People were moshing, crowd surfing, and stage diving as soon as Undeath hit the stage. I’ve never seen Undeath before, and I was really looking forward to their set. I’ve been listening to their Live…From the Grave album to give me a taste of what I was getting into, and wow! They sound even better in person. They played all my favorite songs, like Human Chandelier, Rise from the Grave, and Enhancing the Dead.
I’m so happy I finally got to see Undeath live, and I can’t wait to see them again in 2023. They will be going on tour with Justice for the Damned, I Am, and Kublai Khan for Thy Art is Murder’s Decade of Hate Tour.
Overall, Slave to the Grave was filled with pure death metal, and it couldn’t have been any better. What a great night for some beatings!