Saturday, December 09, 2006

True Norwegian Black Metal

Satyricon – Live at The Metro, Sydney Dec 5th

Unfortunately I must once again inform you that due to a last minute camera malfunction I have no photos of this concert. This is a real pity as, unlike some bands I've been to see recently, Satyricon presented plenty of nice photo opportunities (if little else). This has happened once too often for my liking so this weekend's plans shall include an upgrade of my current camera situation.

This concert was a bit of a last minute escapade for me. Satyricon are, along with In Flames, the most successful black metal band in the world in terms of sales, and as such are despised by the metal scene as lacking trveness (at least they're Norwegian). Never one to merely accept conventional wisdom on these matters I went on a quick Satyricon education program (as currently viewable in the 'Now Listening To' panel on the right). I found their music not terribly exciting but decent enough to justify going along to see them perform live. As it happens the albums I've been listening to are their earliest, and most black metal fans will begrudgingly admit that their early music is, if not actually good, at least less offensive than their contemporary output. If I'd heard their latest album I may not actually have bothered going.

Again I must lament not having a camera, because these guys at least look interesting, with their necro makeup, grimy black metal fashion sense, Frost's enormous drum kit and the obligatory hot blonde chick on keyboards in the background. Black metal is meant to be cheesy, and their presentation certainly delivered in that regard. Their on stage antics made me feel like I was at an 80s hair metal concert. Especially when all three guitarists started whirlwinding their hair around in a synchronised fashion while playing. Satyr, the vocalist, was especially retro with his stage banter: “Wow I think you guys might be going even harder than Melbourne!”, which made me laugh because it reminded me of Mike Patton's hilarious piss takes of that sort of shit.

The crowd was pretty rubbish too. I guess this is what happens when you gather together the subset of people metal enough to be into Satyricon but not hipster enough to know that Satyricon aren't cool. The moshpit was especially bad, at least to begin with, I have no problem with a bit of violence in that setting because that's to be expected but when it's just a bunch of incredibly drunk guys stumbling into each other it's just annoying.

Wildebeest Asylum Moshpit Safety Tip:

When getting yourself thrown high in the air in order to begin crowd surfing make sure you are completely and utterly drunk out of your mind beforehand, so that when the moshpit parts and you smash right into the ground you are relaxed enough so that you only break a leg rather than your back.

For some reason there seemed to be a high number of angry young women in attendance who weren't afraid to try and kick the shit out of any guy who drunkenly crashed into them.

Wildebeest Asylum Moshpit Safety Tip:

Young ladies attempting to inflict bodily harm on drunk angry men in black metal moshpits should be aware that said angry men will probably start hitting them back (hard), no matter how hot they look in that skanky little outfit.

And now we must turn to the sad topic of the band's performance. To put it plainly, it kind of sucked. I won't say they totally sucked, as a few tracks came of brilliantly, most notably the opening song 'Walk The Path Of Sorrow' (the first track off their first album), and the last song of their main set (before the encore), which I didn't know but which fucking rocked out all the same. Most of the rest of their set was uninspiring to say the least. Their new songs were garbage (barely black metal at all) but even old classics from Nemesis Divina such as 'Du Som Hater Gud' and 'Mother North' fell flat. It was worth going to for the sake of going to a concert, but I definitely wouldn't drag myself out on a Tuesday night again to see them.

One last thing. The opening act, Ruins, were pretty good.

Wildebeest Asylum Bonus Moshpit Safety Tips:

Don't piss off the chick in the wheelchair. No matter how ill advised it is for her to be in the moshpit it's not a good look if you knock her over.

Clueless eighteen year olds who stand in the middle of the mosh circle and then looked shocked and surprised when people start slamming into you: please continue doing this! It is greatly amusing to your fellow concert goers!


Joel said...

I like how you tagged the entry with munters.

Jon said...

There were some truly unpleasant specimens of humanity present at that gig...