Greensboro, North Carolina – The second day of the massacre brings music from death metal legends Possessed, speed metal veterans Exciter, Johnstown, Pennsylvania’s death metal masters Incantation, Miami, Florida’s Death tribute band Gruesome, Greensboro, North Carolina’s death metal outfit False Prophet, Atlanta, Georgia’s gothic black metal band Cloak, Charlotte, North Carolina’s black metal band Angel Massacre, South Carolina’s blackened thrash band Demiser, and Orlando, Florida’s black metal outfit Haunted. For the horror movie fans there was a discussion panel and Q & A with The Evil Dead Ladies Betsy Baker and Theresa Tilly, Richard Demanicor “Scotty” from The Evil Dead and Lauren-Marie Taylor of “Friday The 13th Part 2” along with an appearance of George “Corpse Grinder” Fisher of Cannibal Corpse and The Chainsaw Girls.
In short, if day one of the massacre didn’t melt your face off day two would finish the job!!!
The day started with a discussion panel and a Q&A session with The Evil Dead Ladies Betsy Baker and Theresa Tilly, Richard Demanicor “Scotty” from The Evil Dead and Lauren-Marie Taylor from “Friday The 13th Part 2”. I spoke to Betsy and Theresa briefly and Theresa talked to Kam Lee of Massacre about death metal. She said that she now understands the relationship that horror and metal music have. I thought it was pretty cool that Theresa took the initiative to ask Kam about metal music.
I was asked about black metal since the first four bands playing were either black metal or blackened thrash in the case of Demiser or death in the case of Haunted. I told Theresa that there are differences between death and black metal. I wanted to keep this simple so that I wouldn’t confuse or bore them, so I talked about corpse paint, theatrics used by some bands, and spoke of Mayhem as possibly the most extreme example. I didn’t get a chance to talk to them after the bands started, but I would be very interested in what they thought of the bands that played, what they liked, what they didn’t like, and if they would appear at another metal festival.
With the exception of Incantation and Cloak, the rest of the lineup I would be seeing for the first time.
The first band to play was Angel Massacre from Charlotte, North Carolina. I have to admit I had never heard of these guys despite having friends who are in a number of North Carolina metal bands. Lots of leather and corpse paint, they sounded good and in some ways reminded me of Mayhem. They were the only band to take full advantage of the projection screen and had an image of a church burning which I did use to frame shots of bass player Murmor. If you get a chance check these guys out!!!
Angel Massacre SETLIST
Dehumanization of the Christan Race
Return to the Fog
Enter the Forest of Hate
Burn the WatchTower
Drag Me to My Grave
Until I am No More
I checked out Haunted‘s website to get an idea of what I was going to see. What I saw made me think of Cradle of Filth and Dimmu Borgir, which isn’t a bad thing. I was pleasantly surprised by an even mix of theatrics and brutality by the band. If you get a chance to see Haunted, go. I don’t think you will be disappointed.
Seeing Demiser throw down in some ways reminds me more of a classic rock band in appearance but playing blackened thrash metal. They were an interesting change of pace that is starting to grow on me. Couldn’t score a setlist, so I had no idea what they played but they sounded good!! If you get the opportunity to see Demiser, do it.Facebook|Instagram
One band that I was very happy to see included in this festival was Cloak. I was able to see them in February when they toured with Imperial Triumphant, they don’t waste any time, they just kick your ass!!! Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to get their setlist but they did play “Into the Storm” from The Burning Dawn, their album released October 25th, 2019. This is a band you need to see live!!!Facebook|Instagram
Another North Carolina band I have never heard of is False Prophet from Greensboro. Years ago I used to drive down to cover shows from a venue long gone called Somewhere Else Tavern, the locals called it SWET. Either they didn’t play SWET or I picked the wrong shows to see because by the crowd response to them, they were one of the favorites.
False Prophet SETLIST
The Lucifer Experiment
Let The Angels Die
Prayers Of Emptiness
One of the bands I was particularly stoked to see live was Gruesome, the side project of Matt Harvey of Exhumed. Gruesome is a tribute band playing music in the style of “Scream Bloody Gore” era Death, the death metal band lead by the late Chuck Schuldiner. I was an early fan of their first album “Savage Land” despite a certain amount of negative press. When “Twisted Prayers” came out in 2018, I picked that up as well. They were tight and sounded great. If you get the chance to see them live, don’t sleep on it.
Trapped In Hell
A Waste Of Life
The last time I saw Incantation live was December of 2019 when they toured with Morbid Angel and Watain in Richmond, Virginia. There have been opportunities for me to throw down with them, but I couldn’t make it happen for various reasons until now. John McEntee promised a special set for the festival and he wasn’t kidding. The band delivered one of the most brutal sets of the evening. The circle pit was nuts with activity and people were having a blast!!!!
Deliverance of Horrific Prophecies
Desecration (Of the Heavenly Graceful)
The Ibex Moon
A Once Holy Throne
Impending Diabolical Conquest
Until the festival, I figured I would never see Exciter live. I heard my friends over the years talk about them and I thought it would never happen, they would go on the list of bands I wanted to see and never could. Never say never!!! Playing a set mostly of material from 1983’s “Heavy Metal Maniac” and 1984’s “Violence & Force”, the crowd was transported back to the 1980’s as the band kicked everybody’s ass. For the first time seeing them I was blown away!!!!
Stand Up and Fight
Heavy Metal Maniac
Violence & Force
World War III
Long Live The Loud
Iron Fist (Motorhead cover)
What can be said about Possessed that hasn’t been said before? The death metal legends playing the closing set of Carolina Chainsaw Massacre, what could be more fitting!! Playing a set of songs from “Seven Churches”, “Revelations of Oblivion” and “The Eyes of Horror”, whatever was left of the crowds faces was melted off. An incredible ending to an amazing weekend of music and horror.
No More Room In Hell
Storm In My Mind
Swing Of The Axe
Burning In Hell
Huge thanks to John and Yoyo McEntee for allowing me the opportunity to cover the insanity and throw down!!! Special thanks to the Carolina Chainsaw Massacre Fest Facebook group for assisting me in finding setlists for some of the bands that I didn’t see or shoot. If you ask me if I would want to experience this again, the answer would be “HELL YES!!!”
Festival Date: 5/6/2023 Day 2