Earlier this year Static X announced that they will be bringing the ‘Wisconsin Death Trip 20th Anniversary’ tour to the UK this autumn with a string of sold-out shows. The tour serves as a memorial tribute to the late vocalist Wayne Static. Tonight, on 26th September 2019, I had the opportunity to catch one of the biggest tours of this year at London’s Electric Ballroom. The support line up is strong for this tour with their friends Dope, Wednesday 13 and Soil all in tow. It’s bound to be a killer show tonight!
The ferocious industrial/nu-metal band Dope kicked things off tonight with a filthy, dirty performance fuelled by distorted screeching guitar solos and high energy. London was “ready to go to hell” during the very short 20-minute set with crowd favourites “6-6 Sick” and finishing with the brilliant cover of “You spin Me Round (Like A Record)” (Dead or Alive.) Vocalist Edsel Dope certainly pumped the crowd for the rest of the night.
Now the band that I was excited to see tonight was Wednesday 13. If you have never seen the Duke of Spook in the flesh, then tonight you were in for a pre-Halloween treat with this shock rock horror set. The audience entered the “Necrophaze” with the new opening track. The set included brand-new tracks off the new record ‘Necrophaze’ as well as a mix up of older songs. There was no chance of losing interest in this putrefying performance as with each song came a costume change that featured a bunch of new monster movie-inspired masks and zombie action. Despite the technical difficulty with W13’s mic during “What The Night Brings” the band plowed through the set with “Keep Watching The Skies.” It certainly captivated the crowd and won over new fans who only just discovered the band with the closing anthem “I Love to Say Fuck” that had the whole venue raise their middle fingers as W13 wielded that infamous umbrella.
That eagerly awaited moment had arrived for me to feel the elements of metal from Soil. Vocalist Ryan McCombs had the venue jumping from the outset as they exploded into “Breaking Me Down.” The onslaught was unreal as each song was met with an eruption of applause. McCombs hushed the crowd reminding us why we were all here – to honour the memory of Wayne Static and made a heartfelt dedication with “Give It Up.” What’s most probably their biggest song “Halo” caused utter pandemonium when McCombs jumped in the pit. The epic nature of their performance makes it unforgettable and it’s fair to say the fans loved him and he showed immense appreciation to the crowd.
After the energy unleashed during Soil, momentum was high. It was finally time for headliners Static X to hit the stage as a growing buzz was building during the backing track. Featuring the original Wisconsin Death Trip line up, Tony Campos, Ken Jay, and Koichi Fukuda entered the stage to a huge reception with masked mystery man Xero fronting the band complete with Wayne Static’s trademark electrified hair. Immediately the tone was set for the evening as they plunged straight into “Bled for Days.” Their energy was uncompromising, and the aggression coupled with the heavy riffing radiated passion and enthusiasm throughout made it a cutthroat performance.
The high-octane performance fuelled shirtless moshers throughout and every song created a euphoric response. Xero didn’t need to encourage the crowd as he roared “London, let me see you bounce!”. This only accelerated crowd surfing and beer showers. Things slowed down as we were reminded that this was a memorial tribute to Wayne Static. Fans cheered as the screen showed a montage of the legendary frontman with the touching message “we love and miss you.” The blistering set continued on a high with one of my top tracks “I’m With Stupid” and the destructive set ended with the massive hit “Push it.”
Overall, Static X delivered a bludgeoning set and with Dope, Wednesday 13 and Soil supporting, took us all on a blood-curdling journey. Be sure to catch them in a city near you as the WDT tour continues across the UK and Europe.
Review by Nadira Cee | Photos by Fernando Bonenfant