Sounds From the Embassy
Brutal Truth at The Embassy in London, Ontario, December 15, 1997
with Blood of Christ and Dirge

by: Alain M. Gaudrault
Seems like this will be my last show of the year, and while not the most memorable, it certainly had its own personality. I walked in, well expecting to have missed the two opening acts, having been delayed by work and weather, and to my horror, I could hear live music being played. Luckily, my fears of having missed BT were allayed upon finding out that the show had recently started, with Dirge currently on stage. I have to admit that I was still little phased out after the hour-long drive, racing against time (in retrospect, needlessly) in treacherous conditions with most of my thoughts on other matters of varying degrees of importance, and didn't give the band the attention they deserved. I was not turned off by what seemed to me at the time to be a death rock variant, but my perceptions were admittedly skewed. They claimed they would be opening for Entombed in Toronto around January or February, so I'll make an effort to listen more closely next time. By the time Blood of Christ came on, I'd relaxed and was most anxious to see this set, as it would be the first time I'd seen them live since having started to truly appreciate their first full-length CD, _... a dream to remember_. They did not fail to disappoint, and the inclusion of their new second guitar was an added bonus. Their renditions were quite faithful to their spectacular recorded material of blackened death which successfully avoids a Scandinavian sound and etches out virgin territory (okay, maybe a few off-road vehicles have come tearing through on occasion). They played a few new songs which sounded every bit as impressive, although there are unfortunately no immediate plans to lay any of it down I am told by guitarist Jeff Longo. Danny Lilker, everyone's favourite hemp-head, could be seen checking out the show, his reaction quite positive to BoC. Lilker and I get to talking, and before you know it, the sacred herb is being burned in the band's hotel room. They indicate that touring is going well, the new album, _Sounds of the Animal Kingdom_, is being well-received, and overall, they're having loads of fun. Lilker and drummer Rich Hoak are truly pot fiends, taking a last few draws in the club itself just before hitting the stage to a modest crowd. The set list favoured the latest album, but BT's catalogue isn't huge, so a lot of favourites were heard, although with fewer off _Extreme Conditions Demand Extreme Responses_. They certainly didn't chintz out in terms of content, but oddly enough, I lost track of time (which is a good sign, I suppose) so have no idea just how long they'd been on. Mind you, there were visibly fewer people when the set was over, but the Monday evening show could be a definite cause. Sound could have been far better, and for what BT are doing, my opinion is that for it to come through faithfully, you really need a crisp, tight mix. BT certainly don't disappoint, so fans and curious alike, make an effort to see these guys play.

(article submitted 5/2/1997)


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