Toxic Halocaust was just okay. They were too cheesy, so it kind of ruined it. Plus they needed another guitar player.
Municipal Waste was amazing. Fast, fun, and not too serious. They weren't there to steal the show, but came close. I really think they're spearheading the speed metal comeback, and doing it with great finesse.
I didn't even see Darkest Hour set up or tear down. I was there to see At The Gates, not a band who has built a career off of ripping off At The Gates. Taylor and I went and got a slice of pizza right as MW finished, and returned as the headliners were about to start.
I think I would have been totally satisfied if they played Slaughter Of The Soul front to back. I like their other stuff, but whenever I listen to it, I just want to listen to SotS. The soundguy did a pisspoor job mixing, so you couldn't hear all the little nuances that you know are in there, but it was still good. The crowd was pitiful though. Half the people there didn't even know who they were. In fact, walking back in, we saw some big douchebucket talking to the singer for Municipal Waste:
Douche: "We totally came just to see you guys, man!!"
Singer: "Really?? Well, make sure you stay for At The Gates, they're the reason this is happening."
Douche: ":.....uh, I've never heard them before. Are they good?"
Now picture what a metalhead who has no idea who At The Gates is looks like. Got it? Half the room were these idiots. All wearing the Darkest Hour shirts they just bought, trying to figure out the physics of a "circle pit". There was one stupid fuck who had no shoes on, holding glow sticks who was running around karate dancing. It was infuriating to watch, and you couldn't not keep an eye on him because he was the type that would make an effort to run into every single person there.
All in all, it was a good experience though. I finally got to see some of my favorite songs ever written played live, which was satisfying. Still though, there's a part of me that wishes I still only had the mental image of what seeing At The Gates would have been like, rather than having these goddamn posers taint the reality by raping it's beautiful Swedish corpse.