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Anthrax & Slayer // Live @ The Norva // 10.3.16

Article by: Wendy Podmenik Darugar and Glenn Woodell

Photos by: Glenn Woodell


NORFOLK, VA- Behold, the Gods of Thunder and Thrash Metal reigned at the Norva on Monday night, and their names were Death Angel, Anthrax, and Slayer.

Cue one week earlier: I mention to one of NorVa’s security that we would be coming back to cover Slayer. A wide smile brightens up his face as he says, “Prepare for the Superbowl of metal shows”.

Openers Death Angel had the sold out crowd with horns thrown up and fists pumping in the air from song one. Full-on energy from the instant they hit the stage, the whole experience was immersive, from the dramatic lighting, to the banks of stacked speakers roaring sound past your eardrums and shaking your legs, and the music surrounding you and drawing you into their world. Death Angel played a 40 minute set, vocalist Mark Osegueda pausing mid-set to explain why they has been away from touring for a while -”we’ve been away for a bit writing and recording a record”- in reference to their newest studio album, “The Evil Divide”.



Enter the stage, one by one, half of the “Big Four” of the 80’s thrash metal movement. Only Megadeth and Metallica were missing. Anthrax featured two members of its’ classic lineup, Joey Belladonna and Scott Ian. One of the songs leading their set was “You Gotta Believe”, and the audience was not only singing the chorus, but the entire song right along with Belladonna. “Are you ready to get your ass kicked?” he yelled into the crowd, at times tossing cans of Monster Energy drinks into the crowd, pointing people out, waving, and referencing their last gig in Hampton Roads. “ I gotta say, it’s nice to be back so soon, we were here in January (co-headlining with Lamb of God) the night of the blizzard…since we saw you last, we’ve recorded a new record, and I have a question for you, do you love fresh metal?”. As a teaser, Belladonna concluded their strong set with a verbalized wish to return to Norfolk in the spring of 2017.


A white curtain is drawn across the stage in preparation for the grand finale of the evening, the second half of our Big Four, Slayer. For this, the audience had been building, for this, security was at maximum, black gloves pulled on, waiting for the mosh pits, the insanity, the frenzy of all that is metal. Lights dim and the crowded denizens of the darkness chant for their release, thirsty for gratification. Their twenty song set list featured “Repentless”, “Hate Worldwide”, and “Pride in Prejudice”.

The transition is complete. The crowd has now become the roiling, many-headed beast. All hail Metal.


Wendy Podmenik Woodell
Since entering the world of photography in 2013, WENDY PODMENIK has focused her interest on live music. Her ultimate goal is to successfully present the live music genre as an art form which preserves the expression, emotion, and energy of specific moments in time. ////// GLENN WOODELL spends his musical time working both on and around the stage. He's spent decades behind the lens as a visual artist, and for his career, studied human vision as a scientific researcher. His time on the stage these days is either spent holding on to a bass guitar or a camera.

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