Dillinger Escape Plan @ The Garage, Glasgow

Dillinger Escape Plan at Damnation Festival 2010 by Andy Squire
Dillinger Escape Plan at Damnation Festival 2010 by Andy Squire

The Dillinger Escape Plan lay waste to Glasgow's Garage with ease, proving once again that they are the extreme metal kings of destroying a city.

As they open with ‘Farewell Mona Lisa’, even the most hardcore fan would be forgiven for begging them to stop.  If violence like this broke out anywhere else, riot police would be called to the scene ready to beat down the most innocent of bystanders.

Swiftly booting us into touch with the ear-raping ditty ‘Fix Your Face’, the Dillinger pit draws in helpless punters like farmhouses to a tornado, half-drunk pints flying as debris as Greg Puciato spits out line after terrifying line.

Ghostbusters have been called out for a lot less than this; on third track ‘Chinese Whispers’, as the mathcore heavyweights hit their stride, the frontman is simply demonic, his bark enough to send even the most foam-mouthed of attack dogs scarpering for cover.

With legendary stories following them around just from previous Glasgow shows alone – the broken bones, street fights, the band’s wild crowd surfing, exiting the Cathouse – instruments and all – by way of the audience at the end of a set and of course, THAT projectile cup of shit at Gig On The Green 2002, this promised to be a wild night. However, even experience of witnessing this carnage before, never quite prepares you for another round.

The set tonight spans their diverse career, with choices from tech-metal benchmark ‘Calculating Infinity’ like ‘Weekend Sex Change’ and ‘Sugar Coated Sour’ thrown out alongside the almost-tuneful, by comparison, mathcore of new ‘Option Paralysis’ numbers ‘Gold Teeth On A Bum’ and piano ballad (well, almost) ‘Widower’

Newcomers to this nonsense – imagine their horror – will be surprised and not a little relieved that Greg Puciato actually elects to sing cleanly rather than growl pure, unadulterated hatred on these newer efforts, but the reprieve soon ends painfully with the irresistible ‘When Good Dogs Do Bad Things’ sending surfer after surfer over the crowd, boxing our ears back into the cabbage like mess they happily were.

On its own this aural assault would drive you to despair, but coupled with the visual chaos of Dillinger’s relentless strobe display, its almost enough to make you take leave of your senses altogether.

Finishing on possibly as strong a note as any DEP show ever could, they gift us fan favourite ‘Milk Lizard’, ‘Sunshine The Werewolf’, an unexpected but genius cover of Nirvana’s breakneck-speed classic ‘Territorial Pissings’ and finally, old behemoth ‘43% Burnt’ – and all the while, guitarist Ben Weinman rides the monitors, Greg jumps into the mayhem of the crowd to sing, and finishes with a quick climb to the top of the balcony to round affairs off in suitably chaotic style.

As they step off the Glasgow Garage stage, the destruction and carnage amidst the battered masses is proof enough that Dillinger are the greatest band of their kind. Roll on the 2012 tour; we might just have recovered by then.

They played:

Farewell, Mona Lisa
Fix Your Face
Chinese Whispers
Panasonic Youth
Gold Teeth On A Bum
Room Full Of Eyes
When Good Dogs Do Bad Things
Black Bubblegum
Weekend Sex Change
Sugar Coated Sour
Milk Lizard
Sunshine The Werewolf
Territorial Pissings
43% Burnt

We caught up The Dillinger Escape Plan just before they went on stage, read the full interview here.