There’s a point after the show where someone is overheard stating that what they had just witnessed is “the future of music”, and that doesn’t seem far off. Vampillia are avant-garde with purpose: a collection of like-minded and immensely talented musicians who have somehow found each other and let us join in the magic.
Tonight is an exceptional performance even by the band’s own demanding standards. Considering how it must seem to the casual bystander that they can do no wrong these days, it’s good to know that they’re still capable of meeting expectations head-on and maybe even surpassing them.
There is an increased sense of clarity and proportion that brings the frankly ludicrous scale of their compositions, as well as their affinity for truly out-there atmosphere, to the fore, and while their guitarwork might not have the flash or fury of death metal’s hardest hitters, it fits their stark approach perfectly.
If you’re wanting a unique album that will take you places you’ve never dreamed of, this is a more than worthy one to start with.
Chip King has a howl that could break lead down at the molecular level . . . but there’s usually a balance of beauty and torture to drive the futility of it all home a little harder. Typically, that contrast derives from those they choose to collaborate with but in a live environment, that isn’t always feasible. So what to do? As it turns out, kill ‘em all.
While songs like ‘Transcending Dualities’ and ‘Sovereign Self’, which manifest tonight as eldritch monoliths of funereal doom, prove disarmingly effective at stripping away emotional barriers through distortion and volume alone, Bryan Funck’s voice is enough to push anyone over the edge. He constantly looms over the mic, his screech like a demon’s death rattle, dripping pain from each syllable, and as he periodically peels off layers of clothing, you can feel the intensity racking up.
ALEX is an Edinburgh-based synthwave producer and one of the leading lights of Britain growing retro-wave scene who creates demonic dystopias that would give Philip K Dick the fear.
Friendship aren’t for everyone. They bleed bile and breathe anxiety, but what they do manage exceptionally well is to provide something for the extreme crowds that’s a little more well-rounded than the competition.
It’s a textbook example of ‘psychedelia done right’, a mind-altering experience that subverts expectations of timing, structure and musicality, honing in on the act of creating a kaleidoscope where all shapes and colours are shards of darkness.
Every minute of ‘De Occulta Philophia’ feels purposeful and whether it be in its attempts to recapture the cold fury of earlier works or its desire to stake out entirely new ground, it always achieves some measure of success.
It’s an album that is full of majesty, an endlessly undulating soundscape of synths and funeral doom where not much of anything happens. That is precisely why it works.
By taking an obscurantist approach to everything about their sound, they’ve created a quintessentially Russian metal album that doesn’t rely on gimmicks or nationalism to make its mark. For those who seek out the innovative, this is treat.
Following the (re)departure of Wino from vocal duties, a few chance opportunities and the willingness to keep pushing on has reunited them with original frontman Scott Reagers and led to the recording of a new, self-titled and utterly essential album. We spoke to band founder Dave Chandler prior to their European tour to dredge up ancient history and to peer into the future of the band.
This is a living, breathing kaleidoscope, a swirl of colour, shape and sound. For a band who embody that on record anyway, tonight they have truly outdone themselves.
Calling Daughters incomparable might be a cliché but it has a huge amount of truth to it. They are an immensely emotional prospect but also a cerebral one, utilising movement, contrast and guttural outpourings of frustration to draw the room into their own desperate universe.
Three very different bands and three very different forms of intensity combine tonight to make a truly remarkable experience.
Bergraven have managed to capture the darkness and despair of the past but bring it to the fore with moments of free-wheeling brilliance.
Whether taken individually or as a single collection, these four songs offer a cohesive vision that is crystal clear and more than occasionally majestic to take in.
David Bowes spoke to Sigh founder Mirai Kawashima about three decades of metal innovation.