Metal Giants Fit for an Autopsy and Exodus Co-Headline The Big Easy
The Civic Theatre was no place to take your mama Sunday night when hardcore artists Fit for an Autopsy and Exodus brought their co-headlining tour to New Orleans. Actually, it may have been a perfect place to take your mom or dad as there were an amazing amount of families there, which just proves the old adage, “The family that moshes together, stays together”.
Originally built in 1906, The Civic Theatre is an old converted theater straddling classic and modern in a way that only New Orleans can seem to do. Walking into the Civic feels like an experience in itself. Facing the bar, you can choose to go left or right to enter the theatre itself. Choose carefully! Just kidding; they both take you to the same place. Standing in front of the stage, you feel a little discombobulated until realizing the floor is free-standing so when anyone jumps, you feel the shaking. You can definitely feel it once the pit goes into a frenzy.
In their 40-plus year career, Exodus has made a name for themselves as grandfathers of thrash. They have boasted an impressive list of members over the years, including Kirk Hammit of Metallica and current guitarist/badass Gary Holt.
Exodus have always made a point to take newer bands on tour to introduce audiences to the next generation of thrash and hardcore. This tour, New York speed outfit Undeath opened. The crowd was small as crowds tend to be at the beginning of the night, but they proved that you should always go early to hear what could be your new favorite band. Lead singer Alexander Jones confessed that this was their first time in New Orleans and thanked the city for the warm welcome. Although the crowd took a minute to warm up, by the end of the set, I think it’s safe to say that New Orleans is a fan of them too.
Next up was Darkest Hour. There was a bit more of a crowd, so when singer John Henry demanded a pit, he got one. Henry let the crowd know that the whole band was sick, but you couldn’t tell from their performance. The energy was high and despite the Civic stage being on the smaller side, the band from D.C. filled it like they were performing in an arena.
After a brief set change, the lights went dark. The crowd erupted as Gary Holt took to the stage and launched into “Impact is Imminent”. Mostly promoting their newest album Persona Non Grata, they mixed in a good number of crowd pleasers, proving why Exodus is still one of the most popular thrash bands out there. The crowd went nuts when singer Steve “Zetro” Souza announced “The Toxic Waltz”. The pit went crazy and that floor I was telling you about earlier? Yeah, that was bouncing. And to complete an already impressive set was “Strike the Beast” featuring a wall of death from the crowd. Souza thanked everyone for coming before promising new music in 2024 and exclaiming, “Heavy Metal Forever!”
A breather was needed after Exodus tore up the stage. After another brief set change, it was time for the headliner of the evening, Fit for an Autopsy. Also first time New Orleans visitors, singer Joe Badolato thanked the city for being so welcoming. What can I say? We’re that kind of city. The air was electric as the guys from New Jersey screamed through their set. Playing a good number of songs from their 2022 release Oh What the Future Holds, they ended the set with “The Two Towers”.
There are very few chances left to check out this impressive tour, which wraps up in New Kensington, PA on December 10th. If you are in the path, get your ticket and go support some serious thrash metal.