Metal Allegiance Thrashed The House Of Blues During NAMM 2018

Thursday night was the Metal Allegiance NAMM 2018 event. For the metalheads, this is a show that we all look forward to.  The Metal Allegiance family have found a second home in Anaheim playing a unique set crammed with metal classics at the House of Blues. This annual event brings forth the Metal Allegiance brand of old school metal and thrash to the NAMM experience.

Metal Allegiance Thrashed The House Of Blues During NAMM 2018
Photo by Renee Jahnke

Mark Menghi comments, “SoCal should prepare for a full thrash assault. We’ve assembled a band that includes some of the Bay area’s finest mixed in with the East Coast thrash attack while adding a sprinkle of L.A. and a dose of Brazil. This show is going to be a no-frills, no-bullshit throw down. With all that’s going on in the world, down to our personal lives, a statement needs to be made, and thrash is in all of our hearts, so no better place to do it than with our friends in Southern California.”

“We’ve been doing Metal Allegiance shows in Anaheim at the end of January almost every year, and it is always THE metal event of the year,” adds Mike Portnoy. “Each year the show gets bigger and better, and I look forward to another metal extravaganza in January!”

“The January gathering of Metal Allegiance friends in Anaheim has become an annual tradition, with each concert promising a special lineup and a set list that’s different from before,” comments Alex Skolnick. “This time around, we have an abundance of fresh, original material to add to the mix, as well as familiar classics, and it’s always a fun time.”

Metal Allegiance Thrashed The House Of Blues During NAMM 2018
Photo by Renee Jahnke

David Ellefson states, “It’s time for our annual Metal summit in Anaheim” With new songs and album in the works we’re looking forward to bringing the tribe back together to celebrate all things Metal in January!”

With a line-up featuring members of Slayer, Exodus, Megadeth, Testament, Armored Saint, Overkill, Death Angel, Sepultura, The Winery Dogs, Lacuna Coil, and Alice Cooper; this was a show I was looking forward to seeing. Having seen these various bands at some point in my life, either back in the day, or in recent years, this old-school metal head was beyond stoked to be at this event.

From the kickoff song to the encore everyone jams on, it was, a pure metal heaven experience. There was never a waning moment. The crowd, the pit, the energy inside the HOB was on fire. It’s hard to describe what it was like, but to any that have been to any old school metal thrash shows in their life, they KNOW what it is like. It was, simply put; kicks ass. I was excited from the first song to the last.

Metal Allegiance Thrashed The House Of Blues During NAMM 2018
Photo by Renee Jahnke

Mike Portnoy played drums on all the songs. He brought that relentless drumming that drove every song, bringing us all into that metal thrash release of rage, energy and pure adrenaline. Those riffs and rhythms, that we all know and love, played with pure energy and vigor, let us all release our love of these songs in the only way we can; screaming, yelling, thrashing our bodies around with complete abandon. Alex Skolnick and Andreas Kisser brought forth these metal thrash anthems on guitar most of the night, with Gary Holt and Nita Strauss jumping in on songs, producing their shred. Mark Menghi shredded on bass most of the night. David Ellefson jammed on a few and even played with Mark on some of the songs! The musicians jamming relentless in your face metal thrash was pure metal head spiritual. What took this whole thing over the top, were the singers. Mark Osegueda, Chuck Billy, Bobby Blitz, John Bush and Cristina Scabbia, made this Metal Allegiance event the one of a kind experience it is. They brought us to the otherworldly experience. Each of them was sick and insane in their performances. The audience was never let go, the entire time these singers gave us this old school metal thrash “evangelical” revival experience of we are one family. The guitar solos were impeccable. Every single one of these guitar players was on fire and sizzled our souls with their tasty metal shred. I was in metalhead heaven.

I can not honestly say that there were any standout performances. Every song was “standout.” Every performance, riff, lick, vocal, solo, etc. was insane and kick ass. It was one seamless experience of metal head ecstasy! Pure, in your face, no bullshit, kick ass, old school metal thrash; that was the Metal Allegiance NAMM 2018 experience.

I’ve included the set list for the evening in this article for those of you who were not there. I encourage you all to find the videos of the performances. Play them loud (on “11”). Put them on full screen or your TV. Get off on all of it, just like everyone did that was there.

Metal Allegiance Thrashed The House Of Blues During NAMM 2018
Photo by Renee Jahnke

Hit the Lights

(Metallica cover)

Mandatory Suicide

(Slayer cover)

Fast as a Shark

(Accept cover)


(Judas Priest cover)


(Overkill cover)

Mother of Sin *

Metal Allegiance Original

Room for One More

(Anthrax cover)

Bound By Silence*

Metal Allegiance Original

Lights Out

(UFO cover)

Into the Pit

(Testament cover)


(Sepultura cover)


Metal Allegiance Original

Sabbath Bloody Sabbath

(Black Sabbath cover)

Bonded By Blood

(Exodus cover)


(Iron Maiden cover)

Metal Militia

(Metallica cover)

Pledge of Allegiance*

Metal Allegiance Original


The Number of the Beast

(Iron Maiden cover)

For more information please check https://www.facebook.com/metalallegiancetour/

Review by Tony Lepre.  Photographs by Renee Jahnke.

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