By: Chad Childers
Kathy Flynn, WickedGoddessPhotography.com
The temps may be chilly outside, but Down and Warbeast definitely brought the heat to West Hollywood’s Key Club Wednesday night (Jan. 16) for the Los Angeles stop of their winter tour. The two acts combined for a blistering night of rock and some rather emotional moments before all was said and done.
As was announced right before the tour, both bands have dedicated the entire trek to the memory of late Rigor Mortis and Ministry guitarist Mike Scaccia and each of the acts made note of Scaccia’s legacy and friendship during their sets. During their performance, Warbeast dedicated tracks to the guitarist and urged fans to scream in his honor. It was obvious that frontman Bruce Corbitt was still feeling the loss of his onetime Rigor Mortis bandmate.
Warbeast amped up the audience during their opening set. Guitarist Scott Shelby laid down some killer licks and Corbitt commanded the crowd throughout, with tracks like ‘Egotistical Bastard’ and ‘Krush the Enemy’ working the audience into a circle pit frenzy. The group ended their set on a high note with ‘It’ and ‘Birth of the Psycho,’ their two contributions to the newly released split EP with Phil Anselmo, ‘War of the Gargantuas.’
Down were the night’s headliner and they did not disappoint with the audience passionately fist-pumping along to the band’s songs throughout the evening. Like Warbeast, Phil Anselmo offered his salute to Scaccia and also got a little teary-eyed mentioning the band’s home base of New Orleans before rocking out to ‘New Orleans Is a Dying Whore.’ But amidst the emotion, there was also some levity as Anselmo grabbed a bra that had been tossed onstage, gave it to drummer Jimmy Bower commenting that he thought it might not be big enough and then watched as Bower put on the undergarment to cover his shirtless body for the remainder of the show.
Highlights of Down’s performance included a blistering version of ‘Witchtripper,’ fan favorites ‘Lifer’ and ‘Lysergic Funeral Procession,’ and the anthemic ‘Eyes of the South.’ The set also included an encore of ‘Stone the Crow’ and ‘Bury Me in Smoke,’ with members of Warbeast hopping up onstage for an extended jam on the final track.
The Down / Warbeast ‘Weed and Speed’ tour rolls on into early February. To check out the remaining dates on the trek, click here. Take a look at the photo gallery from the Down / Warbeast show HERE.