Archive for the minneapolis Category

Concert: Baroness/Pallbearer (kind of, 9/1, The Cabooze, Mpls, MN)

Posted in 2016, concerts, doom, doom metal, georgia, minneapolis, minneapolis/st. paul, sludge metal, united states with tags , , , , , , on September 1, 2016 by blackmetallurgy

The other night, I decided to go see Baroness with Pallbearer, because I actually do like Baroness (a friend said he was surprised to see me there). I used to not like them at all, but a switch flipped somewhere in my brain a couple of years ago and now I really like them a lot, despite the fact that they aren’t really metal anymore.

This was my first show at the Cabooze, and I have to say that the layout of that place is a puzzle to me. The stage is located in a very awkward place in relation to the main bar, which sort of sits right in the middle of the room, and the room is very long, making it to where you pretty much have to go outside and walk around the building to get into the bathrooms, which are up near the front. I’m not crazy about it, and one guy (he was a customer, I think, not someone who worked there, he was just talking to a person who worked there), was really kind of snippy and rude with me when I was trying to figure out how to get to the bathrooms (I had never been there before! I was alone, and confused!). Parking was also not easy to come by; of course, I did end up getting there late. Fortunately, there is street parking available in the neighborhood, so it’s manageable, you just have to be willing to park and walk a bit.

All this occurred after I got off work for the night, and since that coincided with the start of the show, by the time I got to the venue and found parking I’d all but completely missed Pallbearer. All I saw of their set was the last half of the last song, which happened to be “The Foreigner” and therefore my favorite part of my favorite Pallbearer song. So that worked out ok.

A little bit later, Baroness took the stage. I had never seen them before, and after their horrible accident back in 2012 I thought I’d never get the chance to. It was shortly after that, actually, that I really started listening to Baroness. The band was in seemingly great spirits and sounded great, and the crowd was very responsive. It was a little weird because I only knew a couple of people there, but the energy all around was great.

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Baroness

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A better shot

As seems to be the case with most of the shows I’ve been to as of late, Baroness didn’t play a lot of their older material, sticking with Yellow/Green and Purple mostly. Which makes sense and is fine, but is sort of a letdown when the Red album is your favorite. They did play “Isak,” however, which is my favorite song from their whole catalog, so I can’t really complain. Some of the highlights of the setlist were “Shock Me,” “March to the Sea,” and the opening theme from the Green album, which was cool (I didn’t know they were going to do instrumental songs).

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Mr. Baizley. Also, props to whoever was on the lights- they were coordinating well with the album colors

I didn’t pick up any merch this time, primarily because I was going to see Shining with Belphegor the next night and figured I’d be spending money at that merch booth (spoiler alert: I did), but also because I wasn’t about to try to fight my way over to the merch table in that venue. Which is kind of lame, because at some point I would like to acquire a print of some of John Baizley’s artwork. Alas, this night was not the night.

Baroness played a wonderful set, and it’s too bad I had to pretty much miss Pallbearer (I have seen them before, but not for a couple of years. They seem to come here fairly often though, so maybe I’ll get to catch an updated Pallbearer set soon). I’m glad that Baroness’ first foray back up to my neck of the woods since their revival went as well as it did, and I look forward to seeing them again.

-H

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Concert: Behemoth/Myrkur (4/30, Mill City Nights, Mpls, MN)

Posted in 2016, atmospheric black metal, blackened death metal, denmark, doom metal, minneapolis, minneapolis/st. paul, poland, USBM with tags , , , , , , , , on May 5, 2016 by blackmetallurgy

When I heard that Behemoth was planning a tour in which they were going to play The Satanist top to bottom, I knew I had to go. I absolutely love that album, and Behemoth has yet to disappoint at a live gig. (Seriously. They have one of the best stage shows ever.) The fact that this was happening on Walpurgisnacht was, well, an added bonus. Who would pass that up?

Anyhow, I had somehow managed to forget that Myrkur was opening until a couple of days before the show. I reviewed her EP over at Burning Fist when it first came out and was really impressed with it, and just as equally dismayed by the sheer amount of hate that she got. The full-length album, M, was far less interesting to me (I never ended up getting it and I don’t really feel an aching need to), and I kind of lost track of her beyond vaguely jumping into conversations on the internet on occasion to slap people on wrist for being douchy. (Seriously. There are legitimate reasons why people are upset over Myrkur, and I understand those. But there are a lot of meatheads out there who think girls have no place in metal, and those people… can fuck off and die. But this is a concert review and that is a post for another day.)

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Myrkur

Myrkur’s live performance went, for me, much like the records did. I really liked the stuff she did from the EP, and the rest I thought was a little repetitive. However, I was really impressed to see her play keyboards and guitar both, and I was glad that she got such a positive reception from the crowd. A friend of mine mentioned that parts of her set sounded a lot like doom, and I found myself agreeing with that assessment. She ended the set with a cover of Bathory’s “Song to Hall Up High,” though, and I, uh, may have gotten something in my eye…

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I was happy that she played some instruments herself

Then, after a fairly lengthy pause, Behemoth took the stage. Behemoth is consistently good as a live act, but tonight they pulled out ALL the stops. In terms of just the stage show, Behemoth hauled out video screens for this one and showed video clips throughout the set, including the super creepy video for “Blow Your Trumpets Gabriel.” (If they have done this in previous times that I have seen them, I don’t recall it.) Nergal also carried out one of those swingy-ball-o-incense-thingies that they use at Mass at one point (shut up; I’m not Catholic, I don’t know what it’s called). There was also a mock Communion, and the fans in the front of the stage got to eat up a bunch of Communion crackers. Also, Orion spit blood all over a crucifix he was holding upside down at the end of “Amen.” It was more live blasphemy than you could shake a stick at, along with a mosh pit that was positively churning the entire time.

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Fire: Never not a great idea

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Swingy-ball-‘o’-incense-thingy

Of course, Behemoth played The Satanist all the way through, ending with “O Father, O Satan, O Sun” and coming out for the last part with the horns on like they do. (So cool.) They played a handful of other songs afterwards, however, including “At the Left Hand ov God,” “Slaves Shall Serve,” “Antichristian Phenomenon,” and “Conquer All.” It was a fantastically fun show, and my doom metal buddy was even impressed despite Behemoth not being his typical thing.

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Inferno destroying everything. Seriously. He is one of my favorite drummers

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Happy Walpurgisnacht from Behemoth \m/

I actually did come away with some merch for this one. It had been a long time since I had a Behemoth shirt, and I couldn’t turn down this one with the Virgin Mary on it. It also occurred to me that I didn’t have a Behemoth patch for the jacket, which seemed wrong for someone who has now seen them four times, so I got one of those as well. I also picked up Myrkur’s EP; I had had a digital copy of it before from when I reviewed the album, but when my iPod corrupted in the fall and ate all my files I lost it.

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“Put me on the blog, mom!” Demanding Cat is demanding. (I know you are jealous of my kvlt Hello Kitty blanket) 

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The text on the patch that you can’t read very well says “The Satanist”

April has been absolutely nuts with shows just about twice a week, and now I feel like we’re about to hit a massive dry spell (there’s some really cool stuff coming up this summer, like Swans (!) and The Body, but it’s more spread out). However, Behemoth on Walpurgisnacht is a pretty good way to end a busy April, and very fortifying for the end of the semester that I’ll be fighting through the next couple of weeks.

I’ll be back next week; I’m almost done with Nergal’s biography, so I’m planning on writing on that, as well as the new Rotting Christ (I’m still on my first listen, but my rash impulse is to say this is even better than the last, which I loved), and I still need to write that post about why you all are so wrong about Reinkaos. (I’d put a winky emoji but I feel like that’s inappropriate.)

Until then…

-Hagalaz

Concert: Absu/False/Christworm/Treasons (4/19, Triple Rock, Mpls, MN)

Posted in 2016, black metal, blackened doom, blackened thrash, concerts, minneapolis, minneapolis/st. paul, triple rock, united states, USBM with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on April 28, 2016 by blackmetallurgy

This week’s adventures in metal shows featured Texas-based black-thrashers, Absu. Since the show fell on a Tuesday, I was running a little late (I work Tuesday nights), and I missed the first band (Treasons, I think it was). This was a much more comfortably attended show; I didn’t have to hide in a corner by the bathrooms to avoid getting smushed like at Pig Destroyer. At the same time, it’d be nice for Absu to get a bigger turnout- it was a smallish crowd last time as well.

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Christworm

The second band, Christworm, went on shortly after I arrived. I was really impressed by them; they played a kind of sludgy, doomy death metal. I texted a friend and said that it was cool to hear a band like this amongst all the death metal around here, and that friend then informed me that Christworm is actually from Baton Rouge, LA, which… explains why they sound so different from all the bands around here. Ha. Christworm is the sort of band that makes feedback between songs on their sets, though, and I’m pretty much always down with bands that do that. I was really impressed with them, and I’ll be keeping an eye on them in the future.

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False

Next up was False, who always put on a good show. They opened with “Heavy As A Church Tower,” which never fails to give me chills, and followed up with a song I’m not familiar with (I… need to get their full-length album. I know people in that band and it’s just embarrassing that I don’t have it yet). Rachel paced in front of the stage for the bulk of the first song, and once again I was reminded of how much she looks like some kind of big cat when she does that. A very solid, strong set.

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Proscriptor hasn’t got a lot of hair, but the other two guys got it covered.

Finally, Absu! I like Absu; I don’t listen to them as much as I should (I was hoping to pick up Abzu at the show, but alas, they had no CDs for sale. Will have to do that with the spring shopping binge I’m plotting), but when I do, I am very aware of the sheer musicianship of these guys. Seeing it live, however, is always insane. They are so tight and so spot-on and the drumming is always so phenomenal, it’s crazy how those three guys make that much monumental racket.

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Ezezu handling some vox

Absu played a variety of songs from their extensive catalog, including a song off a new album we were told would be out later this year, and Ezezu handled the majority of the vocals for the bulk of the set, since Proscriptor McGovern was busy destroying his drumkit. Like last time, the band took a short break and had another guy come fill in on drums (anyone know who this was? Hit me up if you do) while Proscriptor came out to do several songs just on vocals.

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A closer pic with everyone in it

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Proscriptor on vox

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Absu!

(I’m… actually pretty happy with that last pic. Huh.)

As I said earlier, I had planned on buying some music but Absu only had vinyl with them, and while I dig vinyl I generally only buy it in special cases (see doom; rare black metal). I have added “more Absu” to my mental list of things, though (and it occurs to me that that should probably become a physical list if I am to actually remember anything on the list. Hmm).

Anyway, every band I had the good fortune to see on this night played a solid set. False tore it up as usual (nice to see them again since I missed them before Abbath), Absu was absolutely dumbfoundingly good, and I was introduced to Christworm, whose set I greatly enjoyed.

Next up, Behemoth! Playing The Satanist in its entirety on Walpurgisnacht. Should be a good one…

-Hagalaz

Concert: Pig Destroyer/Call of the Void/Invidiosis/Ambassador Gun/Aetheric (4/9, Triple Rock, Mpls, MN)

Posted in 2016, concerts, grindcore, minneapolis, minneapolis/st. paul, punk, triple rock with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 21, 2016 by blackmetallurgy

Two days after getting to see Abbath, I headed down to the Triple Rock to witness Pig Destroyer play their first ever Minnesota show. I was lucky enough to see them before at Maryland Deathfest, and was fortunate to get my ticket early as the show here sold out. For such a huge turnout I only knew about three other people there, but I made some friends in line at the door. They were from Des Moines, ironically, and we traded Vaudeville Mews memories.

There were quite a few openers for the show, the first of whom was Aetheric, a local band that I have not heard of before (but I recognized their guitarist from around places). They were very good; I was really impressed with the guitarist and vocalist both. Lots of melodic, squiggly bits, which is not something I encounter much in a city with so much death metal. I will have to keep an eye on them in the future.

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Go, squiggly!

Ambassador Gun was next (they switched places with Invidiosis and I spent a few minutes really confused), and they played as solid as set as they did the last time I saw them. I’m not very familiar with their catalog, but AG’s brand of punkish death metal was really apropos. (Also, they were and are always a really tight and solid band and it hopefully will not be two more years before I see them again.)

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Ambassador Gun is never not good

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The pit off to a good start early in the evening

Invidiosis was the last local band to play. I have heard a lot about Invidiosis, and some of its members are friends of friends, but I have never seen them before this show. I felt like this set was the odd one out of the night, being more death metal and thrashy than the punk-infusion that characterized all the other bands, but it was a fun and well-executed set nonetheless. Also, Invidiosis is also apparently touring in South America soon, so that’s cool. (And I’m pretty sure that one of their band members works at the liquor store where I buy my beer.)

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Invidiosis

While I enjoy watching local acts, especially when it’s stuff that’s new to me and Ambassador Gun, I was ready when Call of the Void took the stage. I like their stuff and am very familiar with album covers from the record store, but seeing them live really made it click for me. (This is not that strange, I think- for me, grindcore always makes more sense live). Call of the Void was absolutely tremendous- loud, heavy, fast, and fun. I expected a lot from them, and they did not disappoint.

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Call of the Void

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And a shot from further back

Pig Destroyer took the stage at last, and… played a pretty long set, actually. I was very impressed. As I mentioned above, it was their first ever show in Minnesota, and Pig Destroyer live is a rare event anyway. The result was an extremely receptive crowd that made me glad that I had chosen to stand behind the rail- it generated one of the craziest mosh pits I’ve seen (certainly the craziest I’ve seen at the Triple Rock), with people stage diving and pretty much constant churning. I tried to get a panoramic shot of the crowd at one point and that failed miserably. Oh well.

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The guests of honor- Pig Destroyer

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Unfortunately, my pictures don’t do the pit much justice

Pig Destroyer killed it musically as well in what I can only assume is the grindcore equivalent of running a marathon. There was a lot of build up for this one, and understandably so, and they absolutely delivered.

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This show was part two of the insane metal show month that is April 2016, and it served to remind me why I love watching live grindcore. I own grindcore albums, and they’re great, but there’s something about the energy that translates perfectly into a live setting. I need to try to see more grind; I saw a lot in Des Moines but not as much since I’ve come up here.

Just saw Absu, so that’ll be up soon as well. And then, Behemoth. (I missed Apocalyptica last night. I just couldn’t do it. It’s crunch time in the school semester, and I just can’t do everything.)

-Hagalaz

Concert: Abbath/High on Fire/Skeletonwitch/Tribulation/False (4/7, Mill City Nights, Mpls, MN)

Posted in 2016, black metal, blackened thrash, concerts, doom, doom metal, mill city nights, minneapolis, minneapolis/st. paul, norway, tours, true norwegian black metal with tags , , , , , , , , , , on April 14, 2016 by blackmetallurgy

Decibel’s lineups for their annual tour never disappoint, and when I saw that Abbath was headlining this year’s edition there was no way I was going to miss. (I also never got to see Immortal, so there is that.) I was also really excited for the chance to see High On Fire, whom I have never seen despite the fact that it feels like they play here every other month, and Tribulation, whom I have also never seen.

My overall excitement was flagged a little by the fact that it was on a night I had class, so I GUESS I WILL JUST MISS TRIBULATION AGAIN. Someday. Someday I will see them. (Seriously. Every. Freaking. Time. Which deity did I piss off for this to happen? The one that governs graduate students? Because after seven years of grad school I believe that there is a malevolent deity in charge of it.)

Ahem. Anyway. I had class, so I had to arrive late and I got there about midway through Skeletonwitch’s set. Admittedly, I didn’t pay very good attention; I like Skeletonwitch fine, but I’m always a little distracted when I have to walk in on something halfway through. I wasn’t aware that their lineup had changed so much, as I’m only the most casual of fans, but I was impressed with their new vocalist. I saw enough of their set to hear a range of songs, including “Beyond the Permafrost” and a brand new track.

I didn’t get any pictures though, because I forgot that I am now snapping terrible pictures until later on in the evening. Whoops.

Next up was High On Fire, which was long overdue for me. They play here a lot, but I always have something else going on and never get to actually go. I have seen Sleep, but I hadn’t seen High On Fire, which is silly. They played “Speedwolf” and “Rumors of War,” and I noted that Matt Pike still hasn’t found his shirt, which means that God is still in his heaven and all is still right with the world.

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I was back sorta far, which was ok, because there was much moshing. 

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Doom.

Then was Abbath, who came out to a crazy, weird-sounding thing that was not unlike a movie soundtrack, which made me giggle. They opened with “To War,” which makes logical sense as the opening track on the new album, and then I got to deal with the crushing reality of the fact that Abbath and King ov Hell were less than twenty yards away from me. From that point on my brain kind of went into a weird euphoria and I spent the rest of the night alternating between singing along and screaming like a little girl in sheer excitement.

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King ov Hell and his glorious hair

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Dudes

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You can see Creature if you squint hard. This is about the best my little phone camera can do

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ABBATH!

Because I knew that they were going to play Immortal songs going in, but I didn’t expect damn near half the set to be Immortal songs. It was nuts. They pretty much alternated between the two all night. Most of the Abbath album got covered (“Fenrir Hunts” is fantastic live, by the way), and even though, with the exception of “Nebular Ravens Winter,” they didn’t play anything older than At the Heart of Winter, any Immortal is better than the alternative, which for me was never seeing anyone in Immortal play Immortal songs ever, and thus it was that I left that show a much happier person than I was when I went in. Also because they played “Solarfall,” and that’s about the point where my brain melted out my ears.

I admit, I had had a long and trying day and was very tired when I went to this show, and that paired with the knowledge that I’d be missing Tribulation again kind of put a damper on the start of my night. But I left there happier than I have been post-concert since that time I saw Mayhem and Watain on the same night. Holy crap. And if you think I’ve been doing anything but listening to black metal for a solid week now you’re kidding yourself.

Also, I missed our local False, who opened the show, and I just have to say- props to Decibel for letting those guys open. I don’t think that local bands get to open very many of the shows on the Decibel tour (and I understand why; there are always a lot of bands already playing), and it’s super cool that False was able to open for this. It’s also super lame that I missed it, but… well.

And let it be known, that the next day, in early April in Mpls/St. Paul, MN, we got heavy snow dumped on us all day. It didn’t stick, because the ground was too warm, but it’s worth noting that Abbath came to our cities in April and gifted us with a mini-blizzard.

-Hagalaz

 

 

Concert: Taake/Young And In The Way/Vattnet Viskar (2/27, Triple Rock, Mpls, MN)

Posted in 2016, atmospheric black metal, black metal, concerts, minneapolis, minneapolis/st. paul, post-black metal, punk, tours, triple rock, true norwegian black metal, Uncategorized, united states, USBM with tags , , , , , , , , , , on March 24, 2016 by blackmetallurgy

A while back, A and I went to see Taake play for the first time ever in Minnesota! The show was at the Triple Rock, and I was a bit nervous going in as I expected it to be super crowded and the Triple Rock is… well, it’s not the worst venue to be packed into, but it isn’t the best either. There were a lot of people there, but it wasn’t so insanely packed that you couldn’t move around comfortably.

Vattnet Viskar was the opening band- no local bands opening for this one. VV hails from Plaistow, NH. From what I can tell, their music is kind of blackish-psychedelicish metal in the vein of The Atlas Moth but a little more spacey. Their guitarist was a very excitable young man, and spit a lot (nothing against him. Everyone was spitting a lot. There was spit everywhere. Seriously. So much bodily fluids. Wth). This style of USBM is really cool and interesting, and I will have to keep an eye on Vattnet Viskar in upcoming years. I feel like if they keep promoting themselves and can definitively set themselves apart from other psychedelic-sounding post-black bands they will do really well.

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Vattnet Viskar

 It’s not Vattnet Viskar’s fault that I wasn’t in the mood for that kind of black metal, though. Young And In The Way more hit the spot, considering that my mood was and has not been the best in the past month, and I really wanted to smash something about then. Of course, I didn’t, but the crowd sure did- and here is where I was glad that there was plenty of room to maneuver in the venue, because the crowd on the floor was moshing pretty hard. Being a bit of a purist, I am usually really bitchy about people moshing at black metal shows, but if you are going to mosh at a black metal set, YAITW is pretty much where you should do that. The band was great, the crowd was great, the energy between the two was intense, and I came off YAITW’s set much happier than when I’d gone in.

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Young And In The Way

At last, Taake took the stage! It was unreal, really, getting to see them, as they are one band I had pretty much resigned myself to never getting to see (what with them picking the wrong year to attend Deathfest and then cancelling the Chicago show last summer). A and I were practically quivering with anticipation when we saw the banjo sitting on the side of the stage, which meant that they were going to, and did, play Mir. They also played Fra Vatested til Vaandesmed, my personal favorite, which kind of made the night for me. They also did a cover of G.G. Alin’s “Die When You Die,” with a guest vocalist (I am not sure who it was. If any of you reading this can help me out, please do!). Also, we got to watch Hoest kill a whole bottle and a half of what I’m pretty sure was wine right onstage. Overall, it was incredible; I’m still a little shocked that it actually happened. Mgła and Taake in the same year? I’m both grateful and amazed that this caliber of black metal is touring the States right now.

A special shout-out to the security dude who was standing next to me during Taake’s set, as he wiped up spit and spilled wine and kept Hoest from falling to his untimely death over the dismembered mic stands all night. Triple Rock, that guy deserves a raise. Seriously.

***

I’m going to try to keep this thing updated a bit better now that the record store is closed and I can’t bitch about metal there (I need SOME venue to bitch about it in). I’m thinking Thursdays may be the lucky day, but I need a bit to see if it’s going to be every week or bi-weekly. I’m also going to switch over to just uploading images instead of linking out to videos, so as not to bog down people’s computers (mine included). In the interest of this, please ignore their shoddy quality.

-H

Concert: Mayhem/Watain/Revenge (1/17, Mill City Nights, Minneapolis, MN)

Posted in . watain, canada, mayhem, mill city nights, minneapolis, minneapolis/st. paul, revenge, sweden, tours, true norwegian black metal, watain with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 21, 2015 by blackmetallurgy

Well, over a month after it happened and almost two weeks after I wrote this thing, I am finally putting up my live report from the front row of the Mayhem show. I blame my not-nearly-as-quick-as-I-had-anticipated recovery from oral surgery (turns out, getting your wisdom teeth out when you’re 27 kind of sucks), as well as preoccupation with school (one month left til I start my prelims, y’all).

But anyway, here it is. I treated this review as of a co-headlining tour, as I picked up from The Internet that that’s what it was, with Mayhem and Watain alternating the closing spot each night.

***

A couple of weeks ago, I got the rare, rare chance to see two of my favorite bands on the same stage in the same night. I don’t think I need to tell you all exactly how I feel about Mayhem, and Watain likewise holds a special place in my heart. Currently, I am in the midst of cultivating a love of Revenge, who I have clearly not paid enough attention to, although I know that they are a favorite amongst some friends of mine. Considering that they were one of the bands I missed at Maryland Deathfest a couple of years ago, too, I was looking forward to the opportunity to see them live and make that up (although I absolutely do not regret trading my potential time with them at MDF for meeting fucking Ihsahn).

A and I tried to get there early this time, figuring that there would be a ton of people going. Earlier in the day, A told me that she had seen several dudes in black battlejackets roaming the streets in downtown Minneapolis, so you know something was brewing. It’s not every day that black metal fans roam downtown in packs in broad daylight. However, we really didn’t have to wait in line long at all, the ticket handling seeming to run rather smoothly.

When we got inside the venue, A and I made our way to the front to stake our claim on the rail. Revenge started us off, obliterating everything with sheer, military-grade force. A friend of mine said that the sound was really bad during their set, but I admit I didn’t notice; I don’t know Revenge’s catalog that well (I KNOW. I’M WORKING ON CHANGING THAT. JEEZ.), and anyway, everything is exceptionally noisy when you are that close to the speakers. Revenge played several songs from the breadth of their career, including “Altar of Triumph,” “Traitor Crucifixion,” and “Banner Degradation- Exile or Death.” Despite any potential issues with the sound, Revenge’s set was pure brutality, and their straightforward approach to war-inspired black metal made for a devastating clarity.


[Also, it was fun to see all the dude-friends freaking out like little schoolgirls. Masculine ones, of course.]

If you ever wondered if Watain pulls out ALL of their stage set for an co-headlining slot, I can now tell you: the answer is yes, indeed. The Dark Gods are not going to settle for anything less, not when they know what they can expect from Watain. Even though their set was shorter than a standard headlining one, Watain completely destroyed it, both theatrically and musically. All the ritual was there too, with E praying at the altar at the end of the set and everything. The only thing that would have made it more perfect would be if the crowd had not seized the opportunity to yell a lot.

Watain also played songs ranging throughout their albums; “The Wild Hunt” was of course the mystical ballad song this time around (I am finally ready to admit that I may have missed my chance to see “The Waters of Ain” live), but they also played “Underneath the Cenotaph” (which I don’t think they played last time), “I Am the Earth,” and “On Horns Impaled,” ending with “Malfeitor.” It was nice to see a setlist so varied from the last one I saw Watain play, and they even altered the stage set this time around too, with skeletons and cages replacing the fence-like structures they brought with them last time.


[I am pretty sure I caught a glimpse of black wings somewhere during Watain’s set.]

Last but certainly not least was my beloved Mayhem. Attila did not disappoint in his unusual fashion choices; this night he was wearing military trappings on an unbelievably ugly sports jacket, and what I believe were rain boots. Throw in the bottle of wine that Necrobutcher was plowing through and you’re ready for a Mayhem party. Teloch was right in front of A and I, fully decked out in shrouded hood and cloak, which is cool, because I really dug his riffwork on Esoteric Warfare and it was fun to see that reproduced live.

Despite the fact that Mayhem is undoubtedly touring in support of Esoteric Warfare, their set was not concentrated on the new album (and when you have such an extensive backlog and history as Mayhem, that’s not surprising). “Psywar” they played, of course, but the set also featured songs such as “My Death,” “Chainsaw Gutsfuck,” “Freezing Moon,” and “Carnage” (for which I completely lost my shit. I LOVE that song). Of course they opened with “Deathcrush,” as usual, and they also played a track from Grand Declaration of War- hearing Attila’s version of Maniac’s voiceover live is its own kind of awesome. “Funeral Fog” was conspicuously missing, but that’s alright; there was more than enough old school Mayhem to keep the crowd satisfied.


[Follow the Freezing Moon…]

And speaking of the crowd, the one at this show was not the best, or so I am told. A and I were right up front, as I said, so we were out of the press for the most part, but I do recall some moshing going on, something I’ve never really understood at black metal shows. Watain got on and off stage without P having to crush anyone’s hands this time, though, thanks to Mill City’s stage setup, and as I mentioned, the only thing that I would have liked is if the crowd had quieted at the end of Watain’s set. But I guess we’re not all there for the same thing, and that’s okay too.

I had a Mayhem night at the merch booth. I had planned on getting a Revenge hoodie because I love their hoodies, but they didn’t have any, and Watain had very little merch as well. However, I was able to nab myself a standard issue Mayhem shirt (good because as least one of my Mayhem shirts is falling apart), as well as a Mayhem hoodie. Combined with a high five from Necrobutcher after the show, and that makes for a pretty awesome Mayhem experience.

Pretty standard, but awesome nonetheless.

Pretty standard, but awesome nonetheless.

Hoodie front

Hoodie front

Hoodie back

Hoodie back

Surprisingly, I didn’t experience any issues with security this time, although they apparently made life a little hard for a friend of mine delivering a stage prop to Hellhammer (it was not, nor had it ever been, alive, if that’s what you’re wondering). The security guys in front of me and A seemed cool enough, and they kept a good handle on some of the rowdier crowd participants without using the opportunity to be jerks.

Overall, I had a great time. I got to watch two of my favorite bands share a stage, and I got to grow a little more familiar with Revenge, whose music I clearly need to spend more time with. For a show that fell right after Dead’s birthday, it couldn’t get much better.
-H