Primitive Man, Hexis, Doctorshopper & Others Play At Five Star Bar

Review by Andrew Bansal
[Video by Arturo Gallegos] 

August 7th 2014, Five Star Bar, Los Angeles CA: Denver doom trio Primitive Man embarked a North American run with Danish extreme force Hexis, and made their way to LA towards the end of the tour to perform at the Five Star Bar, where they previously shared the stage with The Funeral Pyre last year. Presented by The Elegy Ensemble, this show had Doctorshopper, Corpspazm and Pessimist as local support, and for the LA doom horde this promised to be another enjoyable evening with some killer bands.

Even as attendees trickled in, LA extreme metal purveyors Pessimist (not to be confused with the Baltimore-based band of the same name) started proceedings with a solid set, followed by a contrastingly chaotic exhibition of heavy music by Corpspazm. The flow of their black metal savagery was somewhat ruined as they paused to fix gear issues, but aside from possessing a great band name, their wall of noise was befitting of this show.

Next up, the three members of Doctorshopper turned things up a few notches further with a highly impressive performance that blended elements of doom, black metal and hardcore punk. I’ve seen this band play on a couple of times prior, but on this occasion they seemed to hit the stage with heightened fury and turned in a display that  in sheer intensity and impact rivaled those by the touring bands that followed. Doctoshopper have been around since 2010 with one crushing full-length album under their belts, and as an extreme metal fan in LA if you haven’t yet introduced yourself to them, you must.

Doctorshopper links: bandcamp

The lighting at the Five Star Bar is noticeably enhanced nowadays with the addition of two extra lights atop the stage, but just before Danish group Hexis were ready to begin their set, they asked all stage lights to be switched off and the two strobes they brought with them was to be the only source of light during their set. The only band of the night that wasn’t a trio, Hexis went on to make their long journey from Denmark completely worthwhile with a memorably fierce portrayal of unabated dark hardcore music. They pulled each and every attendee inside this venue closer to the stage, and the strobes added further to the power of their performance. The five-piece group certainly won some new fans in LA with this show and would have undoubtedly done the same in every city they visited on this tour.

Hexis links: website | facebook | bandcamp

And lastly, Primitive Man took the stage for an expectedly mammoth dosage of unadulterated doom that appeased the head-bangers in this small but extremely supportive crowd. With all the ingredients fans of the genre would expect and love, the trio comprising Primitive Man does a great job as doom flag-bearers and it’s most evident in the live setting even though their 2013 debut full-length studio album ‘Scorn’ was by no means inferior in impact. They also released a split 10-inch with Hexis this year, and in a purposeful but not overly prolific manner, Primitive Man continue on their path to spread their message of cannabis-fueled doom.

Overall, the show delivered on all counts and left attendees satisfied with what they were treated with in return for their investment of time, money and effort.

Check out Arturo Gallegos’ video footage of Primitive Man from the show below, and visit his youtube channel for more videos from this show and several other local shows:

Primitive Man links: facebook | twitter | bandcamp

Elegy Ensemble links: facebook | instagram

Five Star Bar links: website | facebook | twitter