Revocation Blending Thrash and Death, Horror and Cartoons
After a handful of New England and Northeastern U.S. and Canadian dates to celebrate the release of the band’s Relapse debut, ‘Existence Is Futile,’ Revocation were more than surprised a few weeks ago to get the call from their booking agent regarding Scion’s desire to fly the band to not one, but two free shows sponsored by the increasingly metal-friendly car company. Sharing the stage with the Black Dahlia Murder at packed shows to ravenous fans in both Atlanta and Los Angeles in advance of the band’s forthcoming five-week U.S. tour this winter? Sign them up.
“I just gotta say … Go Celtics. F—the Lakers,” bassist Anthony Buda, and a gutsy Bostonian, told the crowd a few songs into Revocation’s set. Ever the quick-witted gent — and so nice, they named him twice, guitarist/vocalist Dave Davidson quipped, “Feel free to punch him in the balls after the show,” to a myriad mixture of laughter and jeers. Rest assured, the boos were for the furious NBA rivalry, not the band’s virtually spot-on, nearly 35-minute set of technically-charged thrash/death metal hybrid. Not too bad from a dude donning a sweaty, vintage ‘Show No Mercy’ T-shirt and two shirtless — and equally sweaty — bandmates.
Repeated yells for ‘Freebird’ — and even one ‘Purple Haze’ request — between songs amongst Davidson’s effortless noodling and jazz-like technicality were well deserved after witnessing the frontman’s virtuoso leads peppered across Revocation’s musical landscape. Reason enough Decibel declared the band “absolutely godlike death/thrash” upon the self-financed release of the band’s debut, ‘Empire of the Obscene’ in 2008.
Before the end to the band’s all-too-brief set, Davidson quizzed the crowd on their knowledge of the 1985 horror classic ‘Re-Animator’ (answered with an alarmingly underwhelming number cheers) and the cartoon ‘Animaniacs’ (answered with a nearly deafening roar from the seemingly young crowd). “Awesome! Well this is a combination of the two,” Davidson informed them as the band began the aptly-titled ‘ReaniManiac’ from ‘Existence Is Futile,’ while simultaneously eliciting the night’s first impromptu circle pit in front of the stage.
Meeting and molding what would eventually be Revocation in middle and high school, Davidson — a grad of the Berklee College of Music — delved into where the band’s inspiration initially came from as young, impressionable youths. “When we’d find new stuff, it was exciting,” he told Noisecreep. “Like when you first heard In Flames doing the melodic death metal stuff, it was like, ‘Whoa! This is awesome!’ But then when you find more stuff, you realize there are a lot of bands doing that, so it was always cool to find something new, to find the next thing when we were just starting. When I first heard Exhorder, it was awesome. And then one guy brings in Death Angel for the first time, you just think, ‘Listen to those riffs!’ From there it just snowballed.”
Such a wide breadth of inspirations probably boded well for the future form of Revocation’s seamless blend of styles. “To anyone that’s hopping on the bandwagon or whatever — we’re not just a thrash revival band, or we’re not just over the top tech death,” Davidson reassured Noisecreep. “Hopefully the people who come out hear us differently, and that can set us apart from the trends people might emulate. Focusing on creating our own sound with influences from so many different places hopefully helps us, instead of us just being straight tech death or something. We try not to just be a mishmash of different styles that sounds chaotic … Hopefully we can achieve a flow and personality for our sound.”
Revocation will have just that chance to ‘ooh’ and ‘ahh’ an equally diverse crowd on the upcoming Music as Art Tour across the U.S. in January and February as the middle act alongside France’s Hypno5e and New Jersey’s the Binary Code as they continue to support ‘Existence Is Futile.’