Home Events Report: Stoned Jesus & Last Thrill @ Božidarac, Beograd, 17.5.2018.

Report: Stoned Jesus & Last Thrill @ Božidarac, Beograd, 17.5.2018.

by Srđan Radovanović

A couple years back we got to see Stoned Jesus in our city, despite more than a few logistical nightmares. One would even go as far as to say “it was about damn time”, or something. When the boys eventually got in their groove, the crowd was fired up, everything was fired up and they brought the house down in what was arguably one of the best concerts of the year. Naturally, that kind of thing left us begging for more and here we are, same band, same place, hopefully same kind of atmosphere brewing ahead!

As a warm up, Resetor went with Last Thrill. I’ve seen these guys a couple times now and I was happy for the selection. Their raw greasy riffing really fits a theme like this, despite a lack of turnout. I mean, it has been common for a while now that the crowd tends to hang out outside during opening acts and sadly this was no exception. It was a good show, it sounded alright, and the vocalist did his part of interacting with the audience. And yet, it only became visibly more crowded during the final few songs of their set.

Stoned Jesus are, I suppose, a household name at this point. I remember when “First Communion” was released in 2010, in what was a love letter to Black Sabbath. But what really put them on the map was their second full length “Seven Thunders Roar” in 2012. By introducing different elements to their base formula, they broke through and gained the status of “the next big thing”. Or at least something along those lines. Known for not exactly beating around the bush, they got the ball rolling with “Rituals of the Sun” off their 3rd full length “Harvest”.

The band took the opportunity to address the now packed venue, saying how everything about their previous show here was a set of unfortunate circumstances, they promised to make it up. Naturally, everyone in the crowd was in the “bring it on” mode. As part of the treat, the band fired everyone up like the last time with “Electric Mistress” before introducing a new song that will be featured on the band’s 4th album. The classic “Black Woods” was next, and as good as it is, it felt kind of misplaced and not exactly fit for middle of the setlist.

Moving on, every concert gets to that “well, finally” song and what everyone was waiting (and probably showed up) for was that one, “I’m The Mountain”, the song that really made the band who they are now. Borrowing a snippet of “Careless Whisper” which they worked into the intro, they delivered the full blow-out version, complete with the crowd singing and the sudden changes of pace. The band then announced a peaceful closing of their set, you know, a calm, refreshing song called “Here Come the Robots” (get it? That’s the joke because the song is none of such)!

Clocking in at about, well I don’t know exactly how much but more than the previous time, they took their bow and walked out. People seem to have been satisfied but to me the experience felt somewhat lacking. The sound quality is something I really shouldn’t be complaining about, it wasn’t bad but it wasn’t good either. A genre like this also doesn’t require any elaborate light fixtures. In the end, I’m kind of forced to dial down my hype for this band just a little bit. They obviously are very good but I guess their live act remains, for now, a one-time experience!

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