MAY 6th 2015

Review by Anka

Conquerors of the World tour couldn’t have had a better lineup: from the industrial-goth openers Deathstars to gothic masters Moonspell, and symphonic death metal titans Septicflesh, the package was probably the perfect combo for gothic and extreme metal fans alike. For someone like me, just a perfect opportunity for a bout of nostalgia and of course, a chance to see some of the bands I have been following since their early beginnings.

This was my first time seeing Deathstars although I have known them for about 10 years now.  Having not been very consistent in keeping up with their releases after “Termination Bliss”, I had no idea what to expect.  From the first sounds I was thrown into that nostalgic whirlwind I mentioned before. An entertaining performance that seemed too short, with the trademark heavy industrial sound yet very melodic and catchy, a voice that deserves a right spot in the goth metal top tier, and a few tracks I recognized from the ol’ days. Even better was to witness them up close, without much of their usual stage paraphernalia, stripped of glam visuals that don’t mean much when music is as entertaining as it is.  Lovely to see vocalist Whiplasher showing affection to a couple guys in front, and see smiles from the crowd that although not numerous, was very receptive and warm.

Moonspell have somehow managed to stay relevant on a continent like North America at a time when extreme metal is most revered. After 20 years they are still writing good music, in a genre that only appeals to a very small niche and has died like 3 times already. How did they do it? Staying true to their sound and touring their asses off. Apart from the brilliant song writing mixing gothic and death metal, you can always expect an amazing live performance, striking stage presence and impressive energy from start to finish – no matter how sick the vocalist might be *true story*. Their setlist floored every old fan in the house, with classics like “Alma Mater” and “Vampiria” and new tracks from the new release “Extinct” that has generally been very well received – at least among the ones I talked to. And that’s how Moonspell do it: within just an hour of true gothic metal, you escape to a world that you won’t have access to through any other metal show, of any kind.

Every time I see Septicflesh I understand the saying “veni vidi vici” in a musical context, thus I find the name of the tour couldn’t be more fitting in this case. They come, they hit us with a massive sound, they liquefy our brains and when they leave, the silence is unbearable. Total dominance – is how I would describe their live shows,  and the intensity is the same no matter how often you get to see them – in our case just a few months after their previous tour! Whether you love the bombastic symphonic arrangements or you like the crushing death metal parts, you will be in awe. The setlist focused on their latest release, with more than half of “Titan” performed as well as other great tracks from “Communion” and “The Great Mass”. A notable mention here, the band introduced their newest member  Kerim ‘Krimh’ Lechner, a multi-talented drummer I have been following for quite some time and whose addition to the Septicflesh lineup seems to be such a great fit that it’s impossible to not pay attention to him.

The only bummer here is that after this tour we will probably have to wait for a while to see the bands again. Hopefully there will be new amazing albums in all camps, and with those, new tours and shows that thankfully we know we cannot miss.