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GALLERY: Killswitch and Anthrax Sitting in a Tree…

T.O.U.R.I.N.G! With Havok at The Fillmore

Photographed by Kevin McGee

The Fillmore Charlotte was once again filled to capacity on Wednesday, January 31st, as the favorited venue closed out the first month of 2018 with a “head bang.” The KILLTHRAX II tour is being co-headlined by the legendary Anthrax and Killswitch Engage, with supporting act Havok, who hail from Denver, Colorado.

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Havok took the stage promptly at seven, and within seconds of those first chords filling the speakers, beer and hair alike filled the air of the Fillmore as metal fans united in all their moshing glory. Opening their set with “Unnatural Selection” off of their third album of the same name, the second song of the evening was followed by a quick rendition of the theme song for Fox’s favorite yellow family, The Simpsons.

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“Thanks for coming out C Harlet,” vocalist David Sanchez laughed into his mic after the fourth song of the evening. “For those of you who don’t know, or can’t read, we are Havok from Denver, Colorado.” Bassist Nick Schendzielos then toasted to reading while the crowd joked about working in fast food. Guitarist Reece Scruggs quickly changed his tuning as the group headed into the fifth song of the evening, “DOA” off of their 2011 album Times Up, and made the ever excited audience move faster than before.

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A news anchors voice filled the venue as Havok geared up for their last song of the evening. “Intention to Deceive” brought up the first crowd surfer of the evening as drummer Pete Webber kept beat with the fast pace track. “This is your last chance to dance Charlotte,” Sanchez called out during the breakdown of the track. Heeding his words, fan moshed harder, and faster as the circle once again opened up.

After a quick stage break down, the sound of AC/DC’s “For Those About to Rock” echoed off the venue walls. All seemed normal until the word “fire” was randomly shouted from the speakers before the men in Killswitch Engage ran out on stage. Vocalist Jesse Leach started the evening with a scream for the opening track “Rose of Sharyn,” which smoothly flowed into “Self Revelation.”

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As the group quickly caught their breaths, guitarist and back up vocalist Adam Dutkiewicz stepped up to the mic to do a quick dedication.

“I’d like to dedicate this song to my one true love… Alcohol!” Dutkiewicz then took a swallow of beer before the the well know riff of “My Curse” met the crowds ears.

“Absolution,” the fifth song of the evening, brought on encouragement from Dutkiewicz as he urged the audience to “quit pussy-footing around and open up this fucking pit.” Not wanting to let their idol down, the crowd opened up the pit and laughed as it grew into the front row of the audience. Leech began to sway his arms back and forth as the intro to “My Last Serenade” began to play and the audience immediately chimed in with the repeating intro.

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One of the group’s top played songs brought the tiring audience back to its feet as “The End of Heartache” was brought to their ears. Fans jumped up and down as if preparing to go into the boxing ring while their screams echoed that of Leech. The group’s final song of the evening “Holy Diver” was received with a guest vocalist. Fans screamed in excitement as Joey Belladonna, vocalist for rock legend Anthrax, took the stage alongside Leech.

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The house sound system once again came back on, filling the venue with our favorite music as the main event for the evening began to set up. When the house lights dimmed, we were greeted with the sound of Iron Maiden’s “The Number of The Beast,” which led into “I Can’t Turn You Loose” covered by The Blues Brothers. Then the moment we had all been waiting for happened. Anthrax took the stage, starting off their set with “Among the Living” off of their 1987 album Among the Living.

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Fans screamed as vocalist Joey Belladonna once again graced us with his presence on the stage, and who could forget guitarist Scott Ian and his epic beard. For the second song of the evening, bassist Frank Bello got down on his knees to play “Caught In A Mosh” while Ian joined drummer Charlie Benante on the drum riser. Belladonna, of course, was running back and forth on the stage, urging the crowd to move along with the band.

The first cover of the evening was presented as the third song of the setlist, “Got the Time” by Joe Jackson. Bello was able to show off his incredible bass skills while Belladonna gave him a huge shout out to which fans gladly cheered. With the fourth track of the evening we found all the crowd surfers who had been taking a break since Killswitch’s finale. Male and female surfers alike were passed over the heads of fans as they expertly avoided the circle pit, which had once again made its way to the front row.  

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“Breathing Lightning” was followed by a quick breather in which Ian spoke to the audience.

“Thank you North Carolina for always accepting us when we roll through,” said the guitarist. “Whether it is at The Carolina Rebellion, or here at the Fillmore, we know we will be greeted with open arms.”

The night continued with numerous crowd surfers, headbanging, and screaming from the audience as Anthrax continued to prove once again that they are just as fierce as they were when the group was founded in 1981. The final cover of the evening was played as the eleventh track, “Antisocial.” Fun fact: the track was used in the epic rock fight scene for the 2017 remake of Stephen King’s IT.

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All too soon the final song of the evening began to play as the audience gave the rest of their energy to the band: “Indians,” also off of Among the Living. Belladonna sang his heart out, and with a final farewell, and a few thrown guitar pics, the guys in Anthrax left the stage.

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The KILLTHRAX II tour continues throughout the United States for the next few weeks. Make sure to follow the bands Twitter, and Facebook pages to keep up with the awesome photos, news, and exciting updates!

Check out the full gallery here!

Born​ ​and​ ​raised​ ​in​ ​Winston​ ​Salem​ ​NC,​ ​Cindy​ ​is​ ​a​ ​professional​ ​taco​ ​enthusiast​ ​and​ ​proud Hufflepuff.​ ​Fangirl​ ​by​ ​day,​ ​and​ ​concert​ ​photojournalist​ ​by​ ​night,​ ​Cindy’s​ ​photography​ ​career started​ ​in​ ​2010​ ​when​ ​her​ ​fiance​ ​took​ ​her​ ​to​ ​her​ ​first​ ​local​ ​show.​ ​With​ ​a​ ​small​ ​Kodiak​ ​point​ ​and shoot​ ​in​ ​hand,​ ​she​ ​quickly​ ​fell​ ​in​ ​love​ ​with​ ​the​ ​local​ ​music​ ​scene​ ​and​ ​concert​ ​photography.​ ​With musical​ ​tastes​ ​varying​ ​from​ ​Acapella​ ​to​ ​Heavy​ ​Metal,​ ​there​ ​is​ ​no​ ​telling​ ​what​ ​you​ ​will​ ​hear blaring​ ​from​ ​her​ ​headphones​ ​from​ ​day​ ​to​ ​day.​ ​When​ ​she​ ​is​ ​not​ ​spending​ ​time​ ​with​ ​her​ ​family, friends,​ ​or​ ​furbabies,​ ​you​ ​can​ ​find​ ​Cindy​ ​with​ ​her​ ​nose​ ​buried​ ​in​ ​yet​ ​another​ ​book,​ ​binging​ ​Netflix with​ ​her​ ​bearded​ ​better​ ​half,​ ​or​ ​out​ ​and​ ​about​ ​at​ ​various​ ​shows.

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