Skeletonwitch Curses the Marquis

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Skeletonwitch Curses the Marquis

Jake Tharan, Entertainment Editor

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‘Tis the season for skeletons and witches to adorn the front yards of houses, so Ohio metal vendors Skeletonwitch put on a show at the Marquis Theater in Denver last Tuesday.

Dubbed the ‘Curse of the Dead’ tour; it is Skeletonwitch’s first headlining run in North America since the release of their 2016 EP The Apothic Gloom.  Joining them on this package are Iron Reagan, Oathbreaker and Gatecreeper – making this a tastefully savage bill from bottom to top.  The entire night brought Denver an energetic show fueled by fine young acts and delicious Marquis Pizza.

Fans filed into the Marquis early to catch the anticipated live show of Arizona death metal group Gatecreeper.  They released their debut full length a little more than a week ago and it was a sickening, seeping heap of metal heavily praised by fans and media outlets.  Their live set was as great as their studio effort, with songs like “Craving Flesh” and “Force Fed” oozing through the speakers in genuine death metal fashion.

Next on stage was Belgian metal band Oathbreaker, who brought a diverse set of songs to the theater.  Their songs danced between tranquil and fast-paced, with vocalist Caro Tanghe sending her beautifully clean vocals into shrill screams.  Fast strumming gave way to hardcore chugs to create a dark, nuanced atmosphere.

Onward with the show as Richmond, VA crossover thrashers Iron Reagan crashed the party to stir some mayhem in the pit.  The group displayed their quick thrash riffing with snot-nosed hardcore punk, hearkening to the teachings of bands like DRI.  It is difficult to resist banging the head to their humorous, fast-paced songs that barely reach 1:30 in length.  Even the members of Gatecreeper couldn’t resist stage diving during their set.  With songs like “Miserable Failure” and “Your Kid’s an Asshole,” what’s not to love?

Last but far from least exciting, Skeletonwitch made their way to the stage surrounded by smoke and lit by red stage lights.  Their tight, Iron Maiden-esque riffing was a sweet sound for the ears of the audience, who delighted in screaming along with vocalist Adam Clemans.  The ‘Witch’ took fans through the icy thrash of “Beyond the Permafrost” and the blackened double-bass mastery of “Burned from Bone.” The set list also included deeper cuts from the ravaging “Cleaver of Souls” to the charred death/thrash of “Gorge Upon My Soul.” They even performed every track from their latest EP, evincing their progression in songwriting.  Skeletonwitch combines speedy thrash riffs with classic heavy metal leads and solos while throwing in impious death metal to create one of the most praised sounds in heavy metal today.

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