I’ve been working in IT most of my life and I am not extraneous to the concept of hacking which sounds better than “anally drilling out the reasons why some experiences do work while some others fail”. Yesterday’s concert was actually a big win for me and I will try to understand why did it work so well, and ultimately consider if this is the right dimension for post-pandemic shows.
My old friend Paolo from Coagulated rex bundled the ultimate Black Metal lineup for the night by sewing three top-tier barbwire unholy monstrosities with as much stage presence as infernal sound. Does this ring Black Metal, anyone?
The show was closed to random people, factually restricting the invitations to those actually interested in the show, which was partly a bureaucratic decision but nonetheless a strong message I could relate to, akin to what we did with the Nuclear the Abominations fest 2 years ago. The venue was small and clean, with astoundingly decent toilets, which is something I am graciously obsessed with: THANK you for letting me piss and shit without being hauled in a dimension out of Kapala-Tetragrammacide lyrics minus the aliens. Also, the beer served was quite good and not the usual shitty carbonated dishwasher water you get in bigger venues for ridiculous prices, which is another big thumb up.
On the downside, if I had to find a major flaw in the evening the overall sound was tragically confused. Given the chaotic nature of the music, the result was a giant wall of slurred noise in which basically you couldn’t understand half a shit. Which – at the end of the day – could have been far more tragic if the three bands had not been able to create that kind of suffocating atmosphere of combat shock: the fixed red lights, the stage set, the putrid energy reverberating in the air was really the perfect storm.
So was the shitty sound so much of a problem? Hell NO. Because Black Metal is never about the single riff, it’s about the overall EXPERIENCE. You listen to a Profanatica record, close your eyes and you’re taken to hell. But what about a show? Is it the same as listening to the same record at home? Nope. You go to a show to live some first-person experience and here I am answering myself from the latest grognard posts. Shows like the one I attended yesterday are the reason why shows DO actually still make sense today. It’s not just the music. You get a completely new dimension, like a 4-D cinema when you see something like that. You’re literally submerged in the music, INTO the songs. Eyes, ears, and skin, all harmonically convey the same message. It’s being alive and part of what’s going on in the moment. So no, the sound, shitty as it was, was just a part of the whole.
The second flaw one could point out is that everybody already knew each other, so it was basically a high-school meeting with band shirts. But is that a problem? Did the decision of a private party actually bar anyone from attending? Did id lack in (AH AH AH) “Inclusivity”? Well, you bet it did, ah ah. And you know what? Fuck it! Not because we’re elite, but because selecting dedicated people led to a perfectly balanced night where everyone was accountable for himself and his friends. Which is cool, because it did not really actually bar anybody to come, it just put some first-level funneling into the process. The people that were invited in turn consciously invited other people, there was a first-level connection with at least someone in the show, and I am certain if someone new to this music wanted to attend, nobody would have raised any objections. Despite what one might think, this is an open, welcoming environment, if you’re not a cunt. So no, this second objection doesn’t really work either.
Yesterday’s show was like being catapulted into Jacob’s Ladder under Pervitin.
Uraniavore Goatphago have been the first shock of the horrors of war when adrenaline first hits the brain. VomitVulva were the slaughter in the trenches, where shrapnel made your friends’ limbs fly and covered you in guts. Sadomortuary took the souls of the dead to hell, while the bodies afield were eaten by mutant Armageddon cannibals.
First time I see the awesome Uraniavore Goatphago and I was blown away bt the sheer static barbarity this duo manages to compress on stage. It’s the kind of brutal primitive violence of late Deranged turned black by the Blasphemachine. Horrific noise wall vibrating destruction.
VomitVulva were the perfect choice to jump from the solid berm of the Uraniavore Goatphago directly into the thick of the carnage. The stage was filled with something that looked more like a narcos squad than a group of musicians. A chaotic mass of riffs, profanity, STDs, and shitty booze. This is what you need when you have to tie together the show.
And then, it was Sadomortuary again. The effluvia of the crypt solidified on stage like Ossorio’s blind dead at dawn. If we take away the new hipster nuance of the term “ritualistic”, it would be the right one to describe the interminable minutes of inevitable hooded DEATH that were punctuated by the band that in my opinion best represents Black Metal in this country today.
I don’t have much more to add, I hope that this evening will set a school and that there may be more such evenings. If so, I will gladly go back and get my bloated old ass out of the door.