BROTHERHOOD OF THE SNAKE TOUR – 2017 Prong, Sepultura, Testament

Livewire –Scottsdale, AZ 
Photographer/Contributing writer
Teri Wright for Bangs Music & Entertainment 

Hey there my Wicked Wednesday Metalheads,

Before I get into our adventure about the BROTHERHOOD OF THE SNAKE TOUR, I really want to discuss the recent and tragic event that occurred in Manchester, England at the Ariana Grande concert on 05/22/2017. My heart is heavy with the loss of innocents who attended her event and went to see possibly their first ever concert. I remember when I saw my first ever event. My mind swirled around the thought of seeing those artists that I hung up on my walls with magazine cut outs or the pull outs they had then. I cannot imagine the horrific scene that many experienced instead. I don’t condone terrorism or the ugliness it brings with it. To know that parents will be burying their children and brothers, sisters, friends, family will be burying them as well. It really makes my heart fill with sadness for their loss. When an event happens, we don’t think that lives would be shattered and altered permanently. A concert is our congregation for the love of music, regardless if it's metal, rock n roll, pop, whatever that might be, we go to an event to be around those who share common ground. Our love for music. My prayers and thoughts are with the families and friends who were injured and lost at this attack. I hope it doesn’t prevent those who wants to see a show in the future from going.  May all of us throw our horns up in their honor. 

Now let’s go wicked and kick into this Wicked Wednesday. 
You all ready to go into the depths of the belly of the snake and bang your head like you haven’t since the 1980s and really be woken back up? If you said yes, then you are in for a hell of a ride.
I haven’t heard these bands since the late 80s early 90s and seeing them perform has really been a long time as well for me. Getting to the venue I could not believe my eyes seeing all my long haired metal friends. Normally at the shows, I see a mix of younger and older crowds and at this show, I saw mostly my old time rockers. You know who you are. I felt so alive and at home.

Waiting for PRONG to take the stage was when I felt the entire room atmosphere shift and it began to feel like a TRUE metal show. I missed that vibe. 

When PRONG took the stage, Lead vocalist Tommy Victor ripped out his set list ranging from “Ultimate Authority” to the best of the best – “Snap your fingers" (If you are like me, even hearing the song title you have to sing the next verse – “Snap your neck.” Prong has always been a fun band to see and after their original split in 1996, it’s a bit of a sore spot in many metal fans because of Ted parsons is not part of the group anymore. He was the original drummer of Prong and with all new members, Art Cruz on drums, Mike Longworth on backup vocals and bass. They still can rock out, but I don’t think their followers are as die hard as they used to be. I really couldn’t complain about the new lineup that we know as PRONG. The band's roots are still there and even though I personally don’t see PRONG as a headliner anymore and really only an opening band. The core and heart are still there.

The last song on the list for PRONG was “Sense of Ease.”  Tommy, Art, and Mike all came to the stage and gave their fans some love. At that point, it was time for Sepultura to rise up. Stage change commenced and then lights dropped. 

Sepultura took the stage and Derrick Leon Green grabbed the mic and immediately bellowed out, “I am the enemy!”  Andreas Kisser on Guitar, Eloy Casa Grande on Percussion, and of course one of the surviving members Paulo Jr. on Bass. This entire lineup has seen the struggles as most bands with the original band members departing and really the only longest surviving member has been Paulo Jr. I never thought I would see Sepultura come back as a thrash death metal band but damned if I was proven wrong. I knew they’d be good live as they were in the 80’s,  But when I heard Derrick bellow those deep dark tones from the land of Brazil and god knows where it comes from otherwise, I sat there and said, “Welcome Back Sepultura, We missed you”. I looked into the crowd and seeing the mosh pit going – YES A REAL MOSH PIT, Not this push back and forth and mock pit, it was a real circle pit. I think honestly my friends, I stepped back into the 1980’s and metal came alive again. I could not believe how intense the entire pit floor, and even VIP balcony was turning into a headbangers ball. 

Watching Andreas shred on his strat guitar staring into the audience, engaging them into throwing up the horns it was almost blissful. The entire set of Sepultura was a return back to thrash death metal ranging in their song list twists of “Inner Self,” “Refuse Resist,”ending out in Sepultura’s true background of Brazilian metal tones “Roots.”  Seeing these guys as well as Prong, My own mind of seeing the changes, yet still hear those underlying tones of their original sound. Even without the true formation of what they were, it was still there.  The final bow for the night from Sepultura was a bit bittersweet as I’m sure many of their metal fans were wondering, “What’s next in store for Sepultura?” These bands have been around. However, it doesn’t seem they are as prevalent as they used to be. To me, this is sad because I remembered when Sepultura, Prong, were front runners, headlining and opening for some of the best of the best.  Rounding out the night with Sepultura and warming up for Testament really took me back some years.

Thank you for that. 

Another stage change commenced. I was able to enjoy hanging out and getting selfies with my friends and talking to them for a few before Testament came on. 

Testament’s Chuck Billy (Vocals) entered the stage and when I saw him along with Gene Hoglan (Drummer), Eric Peterson (Guitar), Steve Di Giorgio (Bassist) and of course  One of the fastest guitarists around and considered as a guitar god Alex Skolnick. My mouth of course dropped and I was in my heavy metal heaven once again. My world was consumed by Testament growing up and seeing them when they were openers for Suicidal Tendencies, and the greats like Ozzy, I really just couldn’t believe my ears. Seeing the fans reach out and Chuck belting the hardcore ripping metal vocals we all knew and some new stuff from their newest album Brotherhood of the Snake. It was very apparent that Testament is exactly that. Something that withstands time, with brotherhood, the changing of band mates as many bands have experienced. Whether it was a fallout, or just them wanting to move onto new ventures, Testament has remained solid. The one thing about Testament is they never lost their true self. Sure, they changed key tones and rhythms throughout their 11th studio albums, but when it’s all said and done. Testament returned back to their true deep grounding roots which are what they started as. True Thrash Death Hard Core Metal. 

The night continued with Testament banging out a 19 song list which alone is impressive, and this tour in itself was a true show of brotherhood, a true TESTAMENT in time that our metal will not die. With that, I bid adieu. This redhead is headed to Las Vegas June 3rd to the Scars and Stripes Music Festival to bring you more metal to feast upon in upcoming adventures.

For future tour dates for the bands, Please check out their websites and give them some metal loving. 


Official Video: Brotherhood of the Snake

Hit me up if you have any questions for the band or myself, I’ll be happy to reply.
Keeping Metal Wicked
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