The sudden passing of Suicide Silence frontman Mitch Lucker in late 2012 certainly needs no prompting in the minds of the deathcore titan’s devotees. The wretched news and its aftermath saw an outpouring of grief and uncertainty for not only the band’s future, but the now lamentable position of the vocalist’s young family, who face the abrupt prospect of life without their beloved husband and father. Thus, ‘Ending Is The Beginning: The Mitch Lucker Memorial Show’ was conceived, as the band took to the stage with a glut of Mitch‘s peers to provide both a chance to celebrate the departed idol’s talents and no less importantly raise funds to aid the plight of his struggling kin.
Uniting the cream of contemporary metal’s rising stars, ‘Ending Is The Beginning…’ represents a veritable feast of delights for fans of modern extremity, displaying the all encompassing love for Mitch as a human being and, of course, the importance of his short career. Opening with Job For A Cowboy‘s Jonny Davy and his rabid take on ‘Destruction Of A Statue’, each guest vocalist brings to the table an intensity born of a blanket respect, making for an experience to relish.
Highlights are joyfully numerous, with Asking Alexandria main man Danny Worsnop turning in a surprisingly savage performance with ‘The Price Of Beauty’, Johnny Plague and Cameron “Big Chocolate” Argon inciting a flailing response from ‘No Pity For A Coward’ and ‘Disengage’ respectively, and Randy Blythe closing proceedings with a riotous ‘You Only Live Once’. Yet, the focal point crown unarguably goes to Whitechapel‘s own Phil Bozeman (‘Unanswered’), whose serial killer presence and utterly monstrous guttural lows are at points genuinely terrifying.
Indeed, ‘Ending Is The Beginning…’ rarely dips below the stellar benchmark, and whether it’s Eddie Hermida (who has now stepped into Mitch‘s insurmountable shoes) tearing through ‘Slaves To Substance’, Of Mice & Men‘s Austin Carilse‘s blood spitting ‘OCD’ or Tim Lambesis and his blood and thunder rendition of ‘Wake Up’, the violence rarely lets up (although Robb Flynn‘s beautiful acoustic run through Black Sabbath classic ‘Die Young’ is more a tug on the heart strings than a fist to the throat).
More than a fitting goodbye to a musician who looked set to achieve so much more, ‘Ending Is The Beginning…’ acts as a necessary reminder as why Mitch Lucker had such an impact in this all too short time with us. From witnessing a young fan in floods of tears before the show and the tumultuous audience participation throughout, his lyrical approach, strident aggression and down to earth nature were an empowering and unifying outlet for young fans looking to music for comfort and guidance. As Suicide Silence look to set their wheels back in motion again for 2014, what better way to begin than celebrating the gifts of a man who helped make it all possible. RIP Mitch.
Written by Tony Bliss