Bodies Collide as Cannibal Corpse Tears Open the MTELUS

When Cannibal Corpse roll through town, you know it’s going to be a good day. And Nov. 5 was no exception as their headlining North American tour rolled through Montreal.

While Cannibal Corpse’s set was supported by Black Anvil, Immolation, and Dark Funeral - a really impressive lineup of bands on top of the main act - I regrettably could only make it for the headlining set. After a brisk bike ride downtown from Côte-Vertu metro (in record time, I might add), I was in the moshpit with the best of ‘em as Cannibal Corpse frontman George "Corpsegrinder" Fisher was headbanging away centre-stage.

I’ll have to be honest: I’m not really the biggest fan of Cannibal Corpse in-studio. While their songs aren’t too different from contemporary death metal acts on paper, the band tend to play their tunes in a very one-tone “as heavy as possible” manner, resulting in ear fatigue pretty quickly in my opinion. As the age-old adage says: heavy as hell all the time is heavy as hell none of the time. I was worried this would be the same case with their live performance, as a lot of bands sound fairly similar in-studio as they do on-stage. But my worries were squandered almost immediately after entering the venue.

Cannibal Corpse kick some serious butt live. The sheer heaviness of their output - from drummer Paul Mazurkiewicz’s frantic use of the kit, Erik Rutan’s ability to turn his hands into a complete blur on the lead guitar, to Fisher’s Earth-shattering vocals - these death metal titans can really make a room rock. The moshpit was one of the most intense I’ve ever seen, as the sold-out MTELUS turned into a swirling hurricane of sweaty t-shirts and splashing beer. This was really a super-spreader event I could get down to.

Fisher also made good use of his infamous headbanging, which legend says is the cause of his massive neck - rivaled only by Slipknot frontman Corey Taylor. Actually, I take that back. We need to get these two guys into room for a measuring contest. Regardless, it was really impressive to see Fisher’s skills in a live setting, his swinging head creating a massive spinning fan of sorts, which commanded the moshpit like some kind of hairy maestro. The vocalist also donned a shirt that sported text saying “Protect the Neck,” which bordered a cartoonish drawing of his own face; a glimpse of Fisher having a good sense of humour about the whole thing.

If Cannibal Corpse are ever near you - pay them a visit! Literally. They put on a show that is well worth it.