Danzig will be performing How the Gods Kill in its entirety at the 2017 Riot Fest. Given Glenn’s displeasure with extensive touring, those unable to travel were disappointed to miss a historic show. Fortunately, east coast fans had their wishes granted with the announcement of a mini tour in the days leading up to the festival. A short blurb on the venue website promised “many” songs from How the Gods Kill along with other fan favorites.
I arrived at the Philadelphia show in time to catch a stellar set from Corrosion of Conformity. After two well-received albums as a trio, Pepper Keenan is finally back. The four musicians delivered a set filled with energy and classic C.O.C. songs. We couldn’t ask for a better opener.
Anticipation was heavy at the Electric Factory as the Danzig skull draped the stage. It was a Friday night and the Philadelphia crowd was loud and rowdy.
“Skincarver” opened the set. This song would be an anomaly as the band quickly delved into “Twist of Cain.” New songs “Devil on Hwy 9” and “Last Ride” would get an airing and the band revisited I Luciferi with “Black Mass.” The rest of the show was a celebration of the iconic first three albums.
After performing “Her Black Wings,” Glenn announced they would be playing several songs from How The Gods Kill. All in all, we got five songs from Danzig III. “Godless” opened this segment, followed by “Left Hand Black,” the title track, “Do You Wear the Mark,” and “Dirty Black Summer.”
Glenn Danzig’s long-standing no camera policy remained in tact. I personally witnessed at least two people being ejected for filming. It was a pleasure watching the show without a sea of cell-phones obscuring the view. By and large, the crowd was respectful of Glenn’s wishes, waiting until moments when the band was off stage to photograph the backdrop.
Glenn was having a great time and in a playful mood. After performing “Last Ride” and “Black Mass,” he returned to the early days by having the crowd vote on whether we wanted a song from Danzig 1 or 2. Apparently the first record “won” and the band launched into “Not of this World.”
Or course the plan all along was to highlight both records. The crowd was asked another question. During sound check, the band had rehearsed “Snakes of Christ.” Did we want to hear that or “Long Way Back From Hell?” It was an impossible question and Glenn made up our minds. They launched into “Long Way Back From Hell,” just after a vague promise to perform “Snakes of Christ” some other time.
For the closer, “Mother” was an obvious choice. Casual fans suddenly become lively and the stage grew dark as the band retreated back stage. The iconic Danzig skull glowed red in the background.
Five minutes later, the unmistakable drums of “She Rides” brought the venue back to life. Announcing that NOW was “that other time,” “Snakes of Christ” became the final song of the evening. All in all, the night was a celebration of a glorious past and a special show for old school Danzig fans.