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Return Of The Living Thrash....Indeed!

On Saturday 11th March, in front of an enthusiastic crowd, thrashers Mur.Doc 104 physically launched their debut EP ‘The Undying’ during an outstanding event at The Garage. Officially ‘The Undying’ was released a few days prior, on 3rd March, when in fact the event was supposed to take place, but due to unforeseen circumstances had to be moved by a week. Still, this did not deter the band, nor those who attended. In fact I believe that this actually worked in favour of the band, because this way they could get another prodigious band to play on stage before them. So, let us start with the first band to hit the stage on the night.

Hailing from the region of Veneto, a northern province in our neigbours’ peninsula with a population of about five million, this, was the second visit of Italian outfit Adversor. The first time the band visited our islands was on the 23rd February 2019 when they shared the stage with Dubliners Gama Bomb and locals Thrashacre, Grotium and Mythril.

Adversor was formed by brothers Marco (Dado) and Jacopo Cardi in 2015 after the split of H.O.S (Harvester Of Sorrow) that same year. During their 9 year span H.O.S. released one full-length album titled ‘The Beginning’ in 2011 after three demos and a split with Violence Spread.

Conversely, Adversor released their first demo in 2016, with their debut full-length album ‘Rise To Survive’ following a few months later. In 2018 the band released ‘The End Of Mankind’ on Punishment 18 Records. Their third full-length album was still fresh when they performed on stage with Mur.Doc 104. ‘Portrait Of A Wasteland’ was released on 24th February on Time To Kill Records, and made up most of the band’s setlist on the night at The Garage with five out of the ten songs presented by the Italians.

The set opened with the same song that commences the new album, ‘Purifying Hate’, which gave a glimpse to all those who have yet to listen to the album, of the brutality of the songs to follow. The next three songs were ‘Psychotropic Nightmare’ from ‘The End Of Mankind’ followed by the title track of their 2016 debut ‘Rise To Survive’ and back to ‘The End Of Mankind’ with ‘Ignoble Blackmail’. These were followed by three songs from the new album ‘Portrait of a Wasteland’, namely, ‘Seven Years’, ‘Entangled’ and ‘Les Miserables’, before ending their show with a re-visit to ‘The End Of Mankind’ with ‘Fall Of the Empire’ and the title track.

Talking to the band after their outstanding performance, it was easy to see their delight to be back on the island and the reception they were greeted with.

A quick change over and Mur.Doc 104 were back on stage for the first gig of 2023. Their last time was in June 2022 during the celebrations of The Garage's fifth anniversary alongside Morsrot and Delirium MT, which was the first gig in over three years. The band was formed in 2017, as a 5-piece band, inspired by the late 80s Bay Area movement. Since then, the band released a single in Maltese titled ‘Insolenza’ (which is added as a bonus track on ‘The Undying’ EP) and an English version of it, ‘Reign of the Dead’ a few months later, both in 2020.

Back to the event, aptly named Return Of The Living Thrash! The band immediately launched into a new song ‘Not Worth The Kill’ before visiting the freshly squeezed EP with the title track (‘The Undying’), ‘Mur.Doc 104’ and ‘Ignorant Masses’ which although concert goers have heard before, in fact the EP was recorded prior to covid but was postponed to a later date under the circumstances, sounded fresh as ever. The band then introduced two more new songs, ‘Brain Dead’ and ‘Summoning The Oppressor’, before playing one of the crowd’s favourites ‘Thrashing The Boat’ also found on ‘The Undying’ EP, as is ‘Insolenza’ which followed. The last two songs on the setlist were also new ones: ‘The Curtain Falls’ and ‘Hell’. But the crowd was not ready to go home yet and to the shouts and cheers to play more, the band played the EP’s titled track once more. Still the crowd wanted more, and they obliged with their eponymous song ‘Mur.Doc 104’.

Any Maltese thrash metal enthusiast could not ask for a better night. The sheer brutality performed on stage by both bands does in fact reminiscence the Bay area movement of the eighties. With regards to Adversor’s album ‘Portrait of a Wasteland’ and ‘The Undying’ EP from Mur.Doc 104 both are a must in any true metalhead’s collection.

  • photos of bands (live) by Emvin Mifsud

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1 Comment

It was a great night indeed. Old school Metal is the law!!

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