Maryland Deathfest has proven itself to be the greatest North American extreme metal festival year after year, with a consistently stellar lineup complete with a multitude of exclusive performances from disbanded, foreign or typically non-touring acts. This year was no different, as Agoraphobic Nosebleed appeared onstage for their first ever live-performance, of which their is fan-footage available. However, despite the solid video quality and overall great performance, there is something missing – literally – from the band’s debut concert. Watch the videos and read more after the jump:

Self-Detonate

Hung From the Rising Sun

There is really nothing to critique the present members of ANb for: Scott Hull’s guitar work is as on point as it always is and all three of the band’s vocalists appear in full swing, particularly the throat-shredding Katherine Katz. Yet, while it is common knowledge that Hull programs all of the band’s drumming, this fact becomes apparent and a hindrance in this footage. Drummer-less bands like Godflesh can put on an enjoyable live performance due to both having an interesting backdrop and their simple percussion that often sounds like a drum machine anyway. Grindcore is an entirely different beast, however, one that has drumming that is much more interesting to watch. Hull does an excellent job – for the most part – of making ANb’s “drummer” sound organic on record, but the lack of a physical performance causes the live performance to seem unavoidably incomplete. Pair this with an excess of vocalists and various individuals standing in where the drummer and/or backdrop should be and the result is almost comparable to the stage at a hip-hop concert, something that can be fine in its own right but is not all that preferable for a show of this style. Granted, experiencing a live performance is much different from watching it; this observation may have been negligible to the Baltimore crowd. But if this performance were to be turned into a concert DVD, it does not seem that it would be worth purchasing.

-SM

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