Words – Clare
Photos – Mitch

We showed up at The Northcote Theatre on the newly dubbed ‘Coolest Street in the World’ High Street, by Timeout Magazine, for the Lamb of God sideshow one day before they play as the third headliner for Knotfest in Melbourne. Joining them was the Canadian deathcore quintet Brand of Sacrifice.

The theme song to Pokémon (known as “Gotta catch ’em all!”) served as intro to the Toronto based band, which seemed fitting as this technical deathcore group affiliates their themes and beginnings with an 80’s manga artist. Vocalist and band frontman Kyle Anderson arrived on stage with impressively long dreads which thankfully subsided our mourning of the recently departed dreads of Lamb of God’s vocalist Randy Blythe. Brand of Sacrifice ploughed into their set beginning with Dawn, Demon King and Lifeblood before the pit opened up for the first wall of death ‘Split this shit and get the fuck out the way!’ Screamed Anderson. During Altered Eyes Anderson whipped his dreads back and forth while bassist Andrew Kim windmilled his silky locks while he thrashed his bright red guitar. The audience sang along with Exodus while Purge ignited the crowd surfers to launch into the pit. For the last tracks on the set list the band selected Millennium which featured some other worldly growls by Anderson and Eclipse with its retro riffs. This was the first time Brand of Sacrifice performed live down under and they kept shit moving.


The chants began ‘LAMB-OF-GOD… LAMB-OF-GOD… LAMB-OF-GOD’ and the intro sounded as the band members leisurely found their positions on the stage. The already amped up mosh pit spared no time at all as bodies started flipping over the barrier for the opening track Memento Mori and Walk With Me in Hell which followed where Blythe launched into his signature jump off the drum platform. From their 2022 album release we heard Ditch and Omens where I caught the venue’s pit crew nodding in unison to the brutal beats in between catching crowd surfers. Mixed in was a plethora of classics including Hourglass, Ruin, Blacken The Cursed Sun and 11th Hour which marked their 11th track on the setlist. The whole room clapped along to Vigil and the energy continued for Laid To Rest. It was near to the end of the night when Randy Blythe engaged the crowd to introduce the band, which would have come earlier in the set but as Blythe explained it ‘We’re fucking jet lagged from hell’. A gigantic circle pit ensued for Redneck after Randy commanded ‘I wanna see a tornado rip through this mutha fucker’. I remembered the last Lamb of God performance I saw at Rod Laver Arena when they opened for Slipknot and I remember being blown the fuck away. 7 years later and they still blew us all away. Can’t wait to see them on the main stage at Knotfest!


Big Thanks to the Northcote Theatre Crew and a special thanks to Dallas Does PR for arranging media access.