If you know Tgod by now, then you can probably imagine what life is like in the days preceding a visit to New Jersey by The Napalm Gods, Napalm Death, that is. If you don't know, I'll tell you. Napalm Death is my favorite band of all time, so everyone around me is punished with the sound of Barney's crooning voice, in my car, at work, at home until their ears are ringing and bleeding. Not to mention the "Raaaaaaahhhs" and growls in your face every time you ask me something or try to talk to me. So yeah, Napalm is coming to town and you all now know it. Hehe.
Even better, they're playing at The Starland Ballroom, Tgod's favorite Stomping ground. The Starland doesn't usually book alot of Death Metal shows, but every good club in Jersey that does is shut down. There were some good NJDM bands opening too. I was contacted by one of them, SMOTHER THERESA, and bought my tickets off of them. I had hoped to meet them before the show and maybe get in to meet the guys from Napalm, but by the time I left work, picked up my best friend and assistant photographer Donna, and got my son, it was too late and we went right in the club. BEYOND THE FLESH had already begun their set and I didn't want to miss them. I first saw these guys representing Jersey at the Allentown, PA Louder, Harder, Faster Festival a couple of months ago. They were impressive. They impressed me once again here too. They're awesome. I don't get to hear much good New Jersey Death Metal. There either isn't much or I'm just missing something, I don't know, but even the good NJDM bands I knew in the past didn't amount to much. These guys are awesome. In my opinion, the best that Jersey has to offer right now. They're heavy ass shiiaaat and they kick freakin' ass!! Another of Jersey's best offerings were also on the bill. I had never heard SMOTHER THERESA before and they left me quite impressed also. Some more good Jersey Death Metal. Hell, something for Tgod to boast about!! People always say Jersey sucks. F**k them. Jersey rules! Now I got shiiaat to back me up! SMOTHER THERESA will stomp your head in and BEYOND THE FLESH will kick the shit out of whats left of you. Hell yeah. Good for Jersey.
There was a Metalcore band next and although I like alot of Metalcore, I wasn't too thrilled with DEAD TO FALL. Their first two or three songs were o.k., but then all the rest sounded just like them and they dragged the set out far too long and the kick dancers... well...ya know. Anyway, Napalm Death was coming and my anticipation was way too overwhelming to put up with any other band. Finally, the time had come....
When my heros walked on to the stage..well...I just don't have words that could describe my excitement. I was perched right under Barney's mic. It was a good Napalm crowd too. An immediate NA-PALM DEATH! NA-PALM DEATH! chant began as the fury was about to be unleashed. And a fury it was! I couldn't even name the first five songs, because they come at you with an explosion and they never stop. Fast and furious is an understatement. Arms and legs flying, the pit whirling. Oh yeah. Barney running at you and screaming his freakin' head off. They did most of the new cd "The Code is Red...Long Live the Code". They tore out my favorite song of all time "Breed to Breathe" doing it double time, faster and more furious than ever. They removed the roof with "Continuing War on Stupidity". Then Barney takes a short breath and growls "Suffer-The-Children" and Shane and Mitch explode again into a double time version of the song. I was screaming my freaking head off and flying around in a whirlwind of total chaos!!!!There is just nothing like Napalm Death live!!!Nothing!! I was right in front of Barney and he says "This one's from the Utopia Banished album" and knowing what it was, I screamed out "World Keeps Turning" and then Barney turned and looked down at me and screamed in my face "WORLD KEEPS TURNING"!!!!At this point, Tgod was completely berserk! Sweatin' and stompin' up a storm!! They went back to their first freaking album and did "Scum" and right before the breakdown in the middle, Barney yelled my favorite line of his of all time, "Let's see everybody SCAT"!!!! and the crowd went jumping around like complete maniacs!!More NA-PALM DEATH! NA-PALM DEATH! chants reverberated off the Starland walls! Oh F**k Yeah!!!!Some Dead Kennedy covers. "Nazi Punks F**k Off". Pandemonium!! A cover of Cryptic Slaughter's "Lowlife" from Leaders not Followers II. Amazing! Then finally ending the Napalm slaughter with a double time "Seige of Power", leaving my neck wrecked and my body in total exhaustion. I hugged Donna and high fived my son and we all dripped with sweat.....and took a half hour..to catch our breath.
Obituary was the headliner, but I was already headlined. After about five songs I knew Barney and the guys would be mingling with the crowd so I set off to meet my heros and complete a most amazing, wonderful evening. I found Shane out by the Merch table and he took pics with me and Donna. Freakin' cool,man! Freakin' cool. I headed out by the tour bus and not long after Barney walked around the corner. My hero of heroes. Barney is the coolest guy in the entire world. I was in my glory completely!! Hangin' with freakin' Barney!! He hung out with me and Donna and took pics with us and my son and his friends and signed autographs and was just the coolest guy on the planet!!! Nothing could bother me for weeks after that. Nothing. Maybe ever! F**k Yeah!