The Observatory brought us a night filled with darkness, and the ominous fog was lingering in Santa Ana on Tuesday February 7th. From New York City, a band named Black Anvil came and destroyed the stage with their soothing heavy black metal. Their new album was just released on January 13, 2017 via Relapse Records titled As Was. The set was a nice short and captivating one, they played songs from their new release As Was. The crowd was engaging with their sound, for some it had been the first time they heard such heavy band. Paul Delaney’s prominent energy on stage allured the crowd. As guitarist SOS would shred to their tracks, as the sound pervaded your head with anguish and the dark sensation black metal is intended to impose on you. The aggressiveness on the drums was given by P.G. who was also selling their merch prior to the show, he beat the heads relentlessly. Mean while Travis Bacon would do back up vocals to multiple songs and his riffs are not something to ignore. The melody in each song played that night was catchy, eerie and magnificent, from guitars to vocals; the atmosphere was set for a ritual where all sentiments were unleashed. Slow, heavy yet melodic is what Black Anvil played that night. The track titled “As Was”, gave us the chills as it was being played live, their sound is tight, clean and a better experience during the concert. Black Anvil definitely brings the darkness to live shows, a perfect way to start a night.
The other act which followed Black Anvil was Inquisition, now controversy is not much of importance to us as black metal is that and much more. Black metal from Seattle, spawning in Cali, Colombia was warming up the stage, as Inquisition brought a neck wrecking set for all lovers of this genre. Inquisition went on stage and played relentlessly, punishing those who dared listen. Dagan, on lead guitars and vocals is a beast, he savagely attacks you with amazing classic black metal riffs. The drums, played by Incubus were simply astonishing, to hear the sequences exhumed from that dark void was memorable. The speed and agility by Incubus shows the devotion for this black metal genre. All themes are covered by this band, from satanism to Cosmology, and hearing them live for the first time was a pleasure. This band is known for some controversial stuff, but hey it’s black metal, regardless of their personal views, this sound drives us to write music, and more related dark arts respectfully.
The night was ready, as the previous bands had opened the gates from hell to unleash the demons known as Mayhem. One of the originators of black metal, were back in the United States, and they summoned the most evil spirits in to the Observatory. Mayhem played De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas Alive in its entirety. The stage was dark, candles and skull were set, as Necrobutcher, and Hellhammer’s presence was felt. Atilla the one and only vocalist to bring you devilish sounds and satanic lyrics came out and the crowd ravaged in the pit. Satan had arrived, melodies were played, those which were written 20 years ago and Mayhem was wrecking havoc. This was a ritual one needed to be present to experience the satanic energy mid air, pervading your bodies as Freezing Moon ensued the soul feeding frenzy. Atilla wore a mask of a disfigured man/monster as he moved from one end of the stage growling lyrics of “Pagan Fears” and such, making hand gestures which were malignant enough to raise the hairs in the back of your neck. While Teloch played black metal riffs that had inspired many lost souls to continue feeding on societies bullshit, yet remaining dark inside. This album is an opus, created by this iconic black metal band, and their live performance left true fans speechless. The mosh pit was chaotic, as packs of hungry demons ravaged each other as “Life Eternal” was executed with precision and savagery. Words pay no real homage to what took place in this dark fortress, Mayhem are the true lords of black metal.Black anvil gave us New York Style Black metal, heavy and edgy, Inquisition demonstrated their roots, while Mayhem malignantly summon evil forces with their satanic requiems, a night for the black metal books.
Reviewed By: Hostile Jo
Check out More dates before they finish their sacrificial rituals here
Also Check out Our interview With Paul Delaney of Black Anvil Here