For this edition of his Photo blog, Wim went to Sint Niklaas where doomed out riffs and sorrowful vocals delivered a pitch black evening of doom metal. Check out his pictures and follow Wim on Flickr.
A Thousand Sufferings
From Sint-Amands, a town in the province of Antwerp, came A Thousand Sufferings, a band I had seen before but without making a lasting impression. They were already halfway through the set when I arrived, which is unfortunate because I really love intros and first songs. Those always showcase the passion and enthusiasm of a band. However, there seemed to be no lack of enthusiasm and passion with A Thousand Sufferings. Their blend of doom, dark and black metal was highly enjoyable and immersive and I don't think I am the only one who thought so. Even though this quartet doesn't bring anything new or innovative to the scene, they managed to play their blend of styles with a convincing flair. So you won't hear me complaining about these guys. I guess we will see each other again soon...
Nailed to Obscurity
Germany's Nailed To Obscurity played their very first gig on Belgian soil and it was one that I won't forget easily. With a solid sound and a captivating stage performance, these guys immediately became a first highlight on this evening. They found their own sound, somewhere between Paradise Lost, Katatonia, Moonspell and Amorphis and guess what, those were some my favorite bands in the nineties. So it goes without saying that I enjoyed this gig a lot, enough to buy the CD immediately afterwards. I hope they will return to Belgium soon because Nailed To Obscurity is one of those things today's doom metal scene needs. Melodic, intense, versatility and heavy. More please...
Then again, I'm also pretty much always in for the suffocating heap of aggression that Alkerdeel brings to the stage. There are still certainties in life, and being brutally beaten down by the grinding noise of Alkerdeel is one of them. Wherever these guys appear, hell is about to break loose and that is exactly what happened at Het bos. The didn't hesitate to blast their blackened sludge over a jampacked venue and the audience willingly underwent the punishment. Much like their gig at Desertfest in October, these Zomergem residents came and conquered with a ferocity that resembles a stampede.
By the end of Alkerdeel, I had to run a personal errant which took me quite some time. When I returned to the venue, Marche Funèbre had already played the majority of their set, seemingly enjoyed by a full crowd. Of course, Marche Funèbre are one of Belgium's best known doom metal bands, crafting their trade since 2007. What I heard was an excellent and well-attuned band that clearly honors the sound of the nineties while also welcoming a modern touch. Certainly not bad and worth checking out decently next time.
I don't want to have to introduce Primordial because they have been doing this for decades. They played their first gigs before some of their fans made their very first steps. They are nothing short of legendary.
owever, if you want an introductions, here is what Wikipedia says: Primordial is an extreme metal band from Skerries, County Dublin, Ireland. It was formed in 1987 by Pól MacAmhlaigh (bass) and Ciarán MacUiliam (guitars). Their sound blends black metal and doom metal with Celtic music.
Undoubtedly, this was the absolute highlight of the evening, making me wonder why they have to play awesome but small venues like Het Bos instead of headlining at large ones. Very early into their gig, I found myself thinking "why the hell aren't these guys the biggest thing in the black metal scene?". Their gig was simply breathtaking, almost perfect even. They also didn't seem to work on sheer volume like most of the other bands, but mainly on excellent sound quality, which is a very, very good thing. See, most bands want to play as loud as possible, which doesn't always result in something satisfying. So for that, my compliments to "Young Daniel", as frontman Nemtheanga called the soundman.
Speaking about Nemtheanga. I my opinion, he is one of the greatest frontman in extreme metal history, still perfectly capable of lifting both the band and the audience to the required level. Of course, he is back up by brilliant musicians but still, what a performer he is. He constantly pushed the crowd to scream harder, go wilder and back it up by becoming the best damn Primordial there is. So yep, this was an amazing concert, for me personally highlighting in a trance-inducing version of 'Gods To The Godless".
About an hour later, I was at home, eating chips with cheese dip and watching two o'clock turn into three o'clock. This was a great night, full of good music, nice people and tasty beers. By the way, I have to say that DJ Aldo has some obscure gems in his collection and isn't afraid to blast them through the speakers between the bands. Book that guy for your wedding, it will immediately be followed by an inheritance...(haha).
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