Machine Head are traveling the globe celebrating the 25th Anniversary of their debut album, Burn My Eyes, and Monday night they brought their show to the House of Blues in Dallas to a raucous crowd.
Keeping with the recent trend of split sets, the band decided to divide the night into two sections, the first playing a greatest hits spanning their career and the second playing through Burn My Eyes track by track to celebrate the anniversary.
The first half the night ignited as the band burst into “Imperium” and continued into “Take My Scars.” The pit is getting started and the crowd is banging their heads and pumping their fists. As they transition into “Locust” the crowd is singing along, which only amplifies the energy in the room. The show continues with “I Am Hell” and “Aesthetics Of Hate.” The first half ends with a cover of Iron Maiden’s “Hallowed Be Thy Name” and “Halo.”
Everything about this first set is amazingly hard and fast, much more so than I anticipated after the 2018 departure of guitarist Phil Demmel and drummer Dave McClain. One thing is evident so far tonight, Robb Flynn is a master front man and the band has certainly survived the departures. The replacements, Waclaw “Vogg” Kieltyka on guitar and Matt Alston on drums, certainly are standing up to the task of providing a brutal thrash show.
Between sets there is a 10 minute break and stage changeover to imagery from the Burn My Eyes album. I sense there is some weariness in the crowd who have already been in the venue for two hours, but that all seems to fade away when the band returns to the stage with a surprise. Joining Robb on stage are the original members of Machine Head that recorded the album 25 years ago, guitarist Logan Mader and drummer Chris Kontos.
The reunited version of Machine Head wastes no time and blasts right into “Davidian.” This is what longtime fans have come to see, hits and deep cuts from the album that started it all for the band. “Davidian” leads into “Old” which leads into “A Thousand Lies” and the band and crowd is showing a renewed excitement and enthusiasm as the band rounds out the rest of the albums tracks along with a medley of Metallica’s “One,” White Zombie’s “Thunder Kiss ’65,” and Slayer’s “South of Heaven” and “Raining Blood.”
To sum the night up as a whole, it was extremely long, extremely loud, and extremely fun for everyone in attendance. It is always odd celebrating albums that are older than a lot of the people in attendance, but after the first note rung out there were no old or young, there were only thrash metal fans banging their heads in unison to a band that is 25 years old and still kicking ass.
– Robb Miller