Longevity is revered in metal, which probably explains why tonight feels more like a triumph for class and persistence than some standard four-band marriage of convenience. ABORTED  are one of death metal’s most entertaining live bands and from the opening seconds of Divine Impediment onwards, frontman Svencho and his comrades are a blur of hyper-precision and grotesque charisma.
SOILWORK  are as polished and powerful as ever, as Bjorn ‘Speed’ Strid’s voice soars across the packed house, daring to inject melody into an otherwise brutal evening. SEPULTURA  are as potent now as they have ever been. Tonight’s set is a masterclass in fury and dynamics, with songs from the superb Machine Messiah more than competing with the expected classics. Unsurprisingly, a closing trio of Arise, Ratamahatta and Roots Bloody Roots sends the pit into a celebratory frenzy. KREATOR  are enjoying a new golden era and they’ve never been more imperious onstage. Mille Petrozza is on immaculate, malevolent form and everything from new anthems Satan Is Real and Hail To The Hordes to ageless neck-wreckers Extreme Aggression and show- closer Pleasure To Kill fizzes with the kind of vitality that, against the odds, all four of these bands have exhibited for decades. Happy heavy metal days.