Back to Camden for another dark night with a mixture of extreme metal, black metal and also a bit of death metal. It was the first stop of a four station-UK tour where Otargos from France, the heralds of technical black metal, represented themselves. Actually it is a very rare occasion when they put their feet on English soil so it was strongly recommended to take the advantage and see them live.
The kick off band Vatigal Surrd’s performance was simply provoking. They were preparing the stage for their unholy ceremony with setting up incenses and torches as well as a human skull. Typical black metal stagescape. The stifling smoke slowly filled the venue which made the fire alarm go off straight away after the first couple of notes. It just ruined the whole atmospehere they managed to create but the essence of black metal was still apparent without any compromise. Their show was evil, bloody and filled with hatred. All these factors are indispensable for an extreme performance from a more than extreme band but tearing the Bible into pieces was a bit of an exaggeration (and slightly ridiculous), I suppose. Anyway, Vatigal Surrd had absolute authority over their set and as a result at the end the stage was completely ruined.
After a short renovation on the stage (even a quick exorcism could have been helpful to clear off the footsteps of the devil) Premature Birth were already tuning their instruments. Regarding to the total age of the members they just left the incubator but the congenital talent what they have is doubtless. Premature Birth was the only, let’s say, symphonic perfomer tonight as their music was spiced up with keyboard themes but unfortunately it didn’t make it more colourful for me. At least there were no “special effects” during their gig that could disturbe them. To sum it up Premature Birth plays quality metal as far as I’m concerned they’re still missing that important detail every band has to find to make their music and performance unique and hard-hitting.
Vehement‘s first full album titled ‘Collapse’ was self-released in 2013. That album is a permanent accessory in my car but tonight was the first time I saw them live. I can’t say Vehement has a big repertoire or discography so far but the emphasis is more on quality than quantity. They consider themselves as a black metal band but in my opinion their music is not that close to that genre. Of course the intesity of the tracks is str0ng and angry enough and it’s also true it doesn’t lack in blast beats at all but Vehement’s music still reminds me something else than traditional black metal. Vehement’s set, just like the previous two performer’s, was also about half an hour long. To be honest I was really looking forward to hearing the song ‘Oceans of Rot – Collapse Part.1′ but sadly they didn’t play it. Maybe next time.
Otargos from France was the main reason to visit The Black Heart tonight. The band has changed a lot during the years. From old school black metal they turned towards the industrial but with their latest album ‘Apex Terror’ they went for the dark extreme direction. Also it has to be mentioned that they left their habit of using corpse paint so the new album means the beginning of a new era for sure. Thankfully these changes are not drastic at all. Otargos is still a band with hurricane fast tracks and well structured concept with a bit of futuristic influence.
Unsurprisingly they kicked off with the title track from the latest release and most of the performed tracks were from the new album. From the first second till the end of the show there were no stop for them. They keep up the attention with ease and doesn’t let the audience to get bored.
Otargos has all the earmarks of a professional band, however the popularity they’ve reached so far and all the work they’ve invested in are not in balance with the appreciation and recognition they would deserve. In my opinion is this band is pretty much underrated. Maybe one day they will gain more success. I really hope so.
Check out the photo gallery with the rest of shot of the night here.
Cloning the Divine
Remnant from a Long-Dead Star