Tales From The Stage – Kreator and Accept

Today I’m going back in the time machine to 2012. It seems odd to have to look so far back for what was just a recent year, but that’s what getting old and going through a series of crazy world events does, it puts a lot of distance to even the recent past.

2012 was kind of funny – it was the year the world was “supposed” to end, based on some idiot’s interpretation of the Mayan calendar. The calendar did not end, it just went to a new cycle. And, as we saw, the prediction was 8 years early.

Anyway, the point of this September evening was to convene to see two legends of German metal – Accept and Kreator. Accept were into their second album with “new” lead singer Mark Tornillo and Kreator were running a stable line-up and touring behind the 2012 album Phantom Antichrist.

This was quite a twin billing, both were bands I had never seen so this was a great way to get two off the bucket list at one time. The show was in Kansas City at a decent sized club called The Beaumont. I’d seen a few shows there but sadly the club closed at some point after this concert.

It’s also worth mentioning that this show was just two days after another trek to Arkansas for a concert. I’ll give that show, highlighted by St. Vitus, a post someday, but there were a lot more bands involved with that so I’ll save it for another time when I’m less lazy. It was a true “700 miles of metal” weekend.

So on to the night of German metal. The show was opened by Finnish death/doom outfit Swallow The Sun. I’m just gonna be real about it – I haven’t listened to Swallow The Sun much at all, couldn’t tell you if I like them or not, and I don’t remember a damn thing about their set that night. I’m guessing that I wasn’t moved given my lack of memory.

Accept was up next and yes I absolutely remember their set. Roughly half the set comprised songs from the (then) two albums fronted by Tornillo – Blood Of The Nations and Stalingrad. While some Accept fans could not accept (…) the departure of classic vocalist Udo Dirkschneider and his replacement with Tornillo, I have been one to love this newer era of Accept. Hearing the new songs aired out live was a fantastic experience.

Accept were phenomenal on that night, cutting through both new stuff and the classic era songs like Restless And Wild and Metal Heart. The set ended with the band’s most famous songs, Fast As A Shark and Balls To The Wall. It was an electric set, Mark and the band were totally on point all night. It rang truer than the huge stacks of amps lined up across the stage, which were totally not real and a bit comical, but it’s all good.

There is no good footage of the specific tour I saw, so here’s an actual pro-shot video from a release they did awhile later.

Kreator were up next. This was my first (and to date only) time seeing the legendary German thrashers, who have been one of my favorites for a long time. Their 2000’s resurgence was spectacular and I was very happy to be finally seeing the group live.

There is one thing about Kreator and live shows – I’m not sure that if, in the course of their now 40 year history that they are allowed to soundcheck before gigs. That might be putting it a bit too harshly, but the band does have a reputation for not caring all that much what they sound like on stage. They have done live albums that sound fine, but in a random bar in Kansas City they might not give as much of a shit about their sound.

I will say that yeah, they were loud and not “dialed in,” but I could still make out their songs fine. It wasn’t the worst sounding live show I’ve heard. There was no dissecting the finer points of their sound but hey, this is a loud thrash band and you might as well roll with it.

Kreator had a set that was focused on their most recent album Phantom Antichrist. The album was a good one, one of several in a row for the group and so it was nice to hear some cuts from it. Beyond that they jumped around to several points of their long career, playing everything from 1986’s Pleasure To Kill to 2009’s Hordes Of Chaos. It was a lot of title tracks and a look at several parts of their catalog. A few songs were bundled into two-part medleys, including the classics Endless Pain and Flag Of Hate. I’m not normally a medley guy but this worked out fine.

One funny part was toward the end of their set. They played The Patriarch, which is the instrumental intro to Violent Revolution. It’s one of my favorite Kreator songs (and albums), so I jumped up front to headbang along and shout some lyrics back. I’m usually pretty subdued during shows but I wanted to jam out for a little bit.

Holy shit, the people up front acted like I was going insane or something. It’s like these people had never been to a metal show before. These people, directly up front, acted like I was punching babies or something. I don’t know what was wrong with them, but I went ahead and rocked out to the song just the same. I don’t know their deal, I saw Testament in Kansas City a few years prior and that crowd was absolutely electric, but these people were sticks in the mud.

Anyway, Kreator got done with their not optimally mixed but still pretty good set and the night was over. I made it to the hotel and back home the next day without being apprehended for a moment of energy and headbanging. It was nice to see Kreator, but Accept was the true toast of the evening.

9 thoughts on “Tales From The Stage – Kreator and Accept

    1. It’s getting tougher to do these, which is why I try to do them now before I get really bad with memory. There are some shows from the 90’s I want to cover but trying to remember a lot of them is a damn joke at this point.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Nice retro review. Accept would be cool to see live. For some reason I cannot get into there latest stuff with mark but when I have streamed there live albums with him he does the old UDO stuff really well.
    Cool you caught em…

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I saw Accept in 1986 and would love to see them again. They opened for Dio that night and it was fantastic! I didn’t get to see Kreator until 2018 but they were worth the wait. I couldn’t believe how good a front man Mille Petrozza is. But you got to see these bands together and that sounds amazing. Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

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