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The Undead Death Metal Concert

The Undead Death Metal Concert

You wanna hear about that time I witnessed an undead death metal concert? You do? Good. Sit down and I’ll tell you all about it.

This happened about fifty years ago. I was an unruly teenager back then. In those days, the long hair was on my scalp instead of on my chin. I hung out with a bunch of like-minded troublemakers. We made our own fun by going around town and causing mischief. Riding around in shopping carts, goofing off in construction areas, antagonizing random packs of dogs, it was dumb and dangerous, yeah, but it was fun for me.

One night my friends were busy with personal stuff. It was late, I couldn’t blast my metal as loud as I wanted to, and I was bored, so I got the idea to go to the giant graveyard outside Tampa. That place is divided into two parts: the old and the new. The new part is around a hundred years old, while the old part is even older than that. The new part is maintained pretty well, but the old part has been neglected for who knows how long. All the headstones are covered in moss and some crumbled away completely. The groundskeepers rarely go there and the city government spends so much of its resources crushing crime and repairing roads that they can’t focus on restoring some old cemetery. All of this makes it the perfect location for local bands to take group photos. I’m sure you’ve seen some of them. Their favorite location is that crumbling mausoleum that’s covered in all sorts of elaborate carvings. A few of those bands pilfered the graves there. No one was keeping guard, so why not? That’s why I planned to go there to look for a souvenir I could show my friends once I saw them again.

After my parents fell asleep, I snuck out the window, hopped on my bike, and pedaled as fast as I could until I reached the cemetery. There’s a large entryway out front, but if you go through the woods nearby, you can sneak in that way. I got in, reached the old part, and walked past several rows of graves until one of them caught my eye. It didn’t look that much different from the rest, but the name on it stuck out to me: Francis Benson. He was the founder and frontman of Radioactive Asphyxiation, and one of the greatest death metal vocalists to have ever lived before he died of cancer. The Putrid Stench of a Dying Regime is my favorite album of theirs. At that moment I stopped caring about taking from the dead and knelt down. I began thinking about how much I enjoyed their work, their blistering blast beats, their raging riffs, their gruesome growls. I wished they were still around. I felt that way about so many other bands that existed long before I was born, but I also knew that nothing lasts forever.

Then a bony hand burst out of the ground. I jumped up, ran about thirty feet, then looked back. I watched as Francis rose from his grave. His clothes were full of holes. Most of his skin had rotted off. What little remained was dry and pale. Two yellow lights shined where his eyes used to be. Despite his rotten state, his long white hair was still on his head. He looked at me, then he made the sign of the horns and raised his arms. Undead metalheads rose from their graves. They all had those glowing yellow eyes. I thought they were going to eat me, but they all walked past me and proceeded to the giant, decrepit mausoleum.

The wind picked up and carried a bunch of dust with it. The dust swirled around that crumbling stone house of the dead and magically transformed into a stage complete with instruments and a wall of amps. The zombies gathered round and Francis climbed onto it. Joining him were four others. I recognized them even in their advanced stage of decomposition. The guitarists were Trevor Azores of Angelic Retribution and Alec Radovich of Infinite Malevolence. Playing the bass was Scott Pavlov of Bacterial Superweapon. Behind the drum kit was Jeff Longstreet of Ultimate Source.

The crowd smelled putrid, so I watched them from the bushes. After a few minutes of tuning and testing, the band began to play the most incredible death metal I’ve ever heard in my life. The distortion was like a giant cloud of blood red hornets bringing death in their wake. Jeff unleashed near constant blast beats that felt like a torrential rain of artillery shells laying waste to barren plains. Scott’s rumbling bass was like the stirring of some giant beast that lurked deep beneath the Earth. Trevor and Alec played extravagant riffs that sounded like the howling of twisted banshees and the roaring of swirling torrents of fire. Their solos were simultaneously chaotic and melodic. They made me feel like I was thrown into some parallel realm full of kaleidoscopic colors. As for Francis, he performed growls that brought to my mind visions of mutated and disfigured abominations spawned from mankind’s darkest nightmares. Everything they played was completely original too. No other band in the history of metal sounded like them. It made me wonder if the dead could dream and pull ideas from the afterlife.

I pulled out my phone in hopes of recording it, only to discover that it had no juice. That was my fault for not recharging it often. As they played, the crowd moshed furiously. Their bones rattled as they crashed into each other and slugged it out. Others banged their heads so hard they came loose and fell off their necks, so they had to pick them up and screw them back on. The band played and the crowd moshed until the Sun peeked over the horizon. At that point, the stage disappeared and the zombies returned to their graves. People around town said they sometimes heard strange noises coming from the graveyard at night. Maybe that was what they were referring to.

Once the concert was over, I fell asleep in the bushes. A few hours later, a groundskeeper kicked me in the head and told me to get lost. When I got home, my parents gave me a beating for sneaking out of the house and staying out all night. When I told my friends what I had seen, they all looked at me like I was an escaped mental patient. A year later, I returned to the same spot in the graveyard, hoping the zombies would hold another concert. They never did. I went back year after year but nothing ever happened. To this day, I still have no idea what kind of sorcery caused those dead metalheads to rise from their graves. I eventually grew to accept that what I had witnessed was a once in a lifetime event, something that is seen only by a select few.

Thanks for listening to my story. By the way, if you wanna learn about some obscure bands or hear about the crazy gigs I’ve been to, let me know.


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