Testament - + Aura + Outburst : Thrash will never die![b]August 9th 2003. A day that I shall remember for many years to come. The day that I nearly fainted for more than three times in the exhausting heat, stripped down to my jeans, sweating, surrounded by 600 mental metal heads. Singing, Banging Moshing (or should I say 'Slaughtering') and showing absolute devotion to the greatest thing invented since Metal : Thrash Metal. Yes, Chuck Billy and his more then metal larger then life Haunted Legion, were Down For Life, Did not Resuscitate and Made people get 'Into The Pit' in a frantic soon to be legendary gig at the Effenaar in Eindhoven. [/b] I don't know about you folks, but to me the weather in Holland has gone far beyond 'nice and sunny' a long time ago. Frying temperatures above 30 degrees and the never cloudy sky make everyone look like either acient Africa decendants or (more like me) sun dried grapefruits. In these weather conditions one goes to the beach or heads to the local freezer to grab oneselve a Ice-cone. You must be a fucking nutcase entering a overcrowded sauna in this weather. And I am proud to announce that I was one of those 600 fucking nutcases last Saturday in that overcrowded Sauna that is called Effenaar. For there was something special in the air. A night of absolutely fine Metal. Three bands, one of witch being one of my personal favorites for many years: Testament. The night kicked off with the Tilburg Thrashers [b]Outburst[/b]. Allthough the band has a reputation for kicking some serious AARS whereever they turn up, and even though they surely did not dissapoint as a band, the gig was very unsatisfieing. The speakers creaked as the volume was unpleasantly loud, the mix was shitty and the singer had some troubles switching from grunt to scream now and then. So it was more or less up to the band and the audience to create the atmosphere. Well you've guessed it: considering the weather condition (it must have been well over 40 degrees in De Effenaar), the crowd didn't do much. Saving their energy for the headliner, as will be proven later that evening. Next up was the Vreemde Duck In The Bite band of the evening: [b]Aura[/b]. Ok it was nice Thrash and therefor deserved a place on this bill, but it had some interesting influences and well, a cool sentece like that I just had to use. Ok here's the deal. Thrashy Death mixed with cool atmospheric Synth/Keyboard experiments. Moshable as fuck, a cool as fuck Drummer (ya gotta love that Gene Hoglan check-me-out-I-play-drums-and-I'm-fucking-good-at-it look in his eyes) and a very good Singer to match with the inventive riffs and arrangements in especially the last two songs they played. During this nice gig the Singer of Outburst look at me and did the m/ thing with his right hand and looked at me in a sarcastic semi-metal way. At that point I realised it was time to switch from Cola to Dommelsch, rope up my sleaves and give my Metal Stare a try. Fuck the heat, this is metal right? After a long wait and literally elbowing our way to somewhat the front of the stage, that's right : right behind the pit, the lights finally went off. A guitar roared, Eric, Steve (DiGiorgio, that's right!), the other Steve and Jon (a fucking genius indeed) came on and the m/ where stuck up in the sky in anticipation of the arrival of one of the most strong personalities the Metal world has ever encountered:[b]Testament[/b]'s frontman Chuck Billy. "WHAT'S UP EFFENAAR" he roared as the Mastodon Chief Of Metal thumped on stage. The cheers where ear pounding, and at the first tones the mosh pit allong with all hell broke lose. YEAH! The band showed they where in absolute top shape (as ever, one considers) and Fired all of their finest Testament Ammo at the audience. For the first 15 minutes all I could do is make spastic movements, remove my shirt and shout "NEUK, JA!!!!" every time there wasn't a chorus line to sing along to. Chuck, Steve and company pleased me very much by playing my absolute favorite Testament song off the Practice What You Preach album: Sins Of Omission. Realise yourselves that this was AFTER legenary tracks such as Practice What You Preach! What an opening! What pleased me even more than the perfect atmosphere at the Effenaar and that amazing opening of a setlist, is the amazing shape Chuck was in. He smiled, he sang with absolute passion and devotion and above all: he was really having a good time. I really REALLY respect this man for his achieving in Heavy Metal and even more the fact that he was right there, in front of me doing what he loves even though people didn't think he was going to live through cancer just more than over a year ago. Chuck: YOU RULE! And so the legend keeps on smashing and Thrashing the audience. Songs like True Believer, Dog Faced Gods, The Haunting (neuk ja indeed) and D.N.R. are all metal classics, and were embraced by all of the 600 visitors. For more then three times I came close to fainting and all that kept me concious were the beer I poured over by head and the huge breasts of the girl behind me (thanks fort being there for me boys). Yes kids, metal is a beautiful thing. By the time even breasts couldn't keep me from falling on the floor someone else got the joke and poured his beer over my head. Thanks for that dude! For it was your beer that kept me awake during the close-down of all closedown's : Over The Wall. Ofcourse the band came back after a short break to serve us Disciples of The Watch. A true icing on a very tasty cake.. An amazing set. Let me correct that: The Near-to-Ideal Setlist! All of the very best of Testament has to offer was offered. And no I won't bitch about the fact that the one disapointing cd the band has ever made ('Low') was represented with the title track. And well, hearing Burnt Offerings wouldn't be a shame on a great metal night like this. But what the fuck? There was Billy, Beer and Breasts. Life is good!
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