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Live Review: Death Cult – 20th November 2023 – Brixton Electric, London, UK

2 min read

Death Cult hit the stage at Brixton Electric last night in celebration of not only the 40th anniversary of their first records, but also their many guises as a band. Starting as Death Cult, before becoming Southern Death Cult and subsequently The Cult – who had a hit in the mid 80s with She Sells Sanctuary – the group reverted back to their original name for a night that would showcase everything the group had to offer.

Lili Refrain kicked off the evening with a Gothic, chamber music vibe, using loops and synth – as well as a healthy dose of reverb – to create an atmospheric environment. Somewhere between the Dune soundtrack and a religious sermon, it certainly set the tone for the evening. Death Cult emerged to rapturous applause, beginning with 83rd DreamChristians and Gods Zoo came one after the other with little time for the audience to catch their breath. Ian Astbury plugged away at his tambourine, belting as loud as he could over the guitar heavy tunes. There was just enough time to thank the crowd before the band launched into Brothers Grimm. As an act, they’re as tight as they’ve ever been. The sound in the room was powerful, and the lights enthralling.

Drummer John Tempesta and bassist Charlie Jones left the stage for Butterflies, allowing the crowd to become the rhythm section. The band came back for fan favourite Resurrection Joe and Horse NationGo West (Crazy Spinning Circles) follows swiftly after, another tune that the fans are happy hear. A quick diss from the audience of ‘get going!’ distracted proceedings, but it wasn’t long before the group were ‘getting going’ with Hollow Man. “Its so beautiful to see the tribe back together” Astbury announced. No stone was left unturned, the double hit of Spiritwalker and Rain ending the set, before the band quickly returned for Moya and classic hit She Sells Sanctuary. It was indeed a night for the cult members to gather in celebration of a band still rocking it out after 40 years.

Setlist:
83rd Dream
Christians
Gods Zoo
Brothers Grimm
Ghost Dance
Butterflies
A Flower in the Desert
Resurrection Joe
Horse Nation
Go West (Crazy Spinning Circles)
Hollow Man
Dreamtime
Spiritwalker
Rain

Encore:
Moya
She Sells Sanctuary