Due to the early door times of 18.00 and the notorious Trans Pennine traffic, I disappointingly got to
Rebellion just to hear the closing chords of the opening band on this monstrous tour package dying
out inside as I was stood in the queue outside, annoying.
Anyway, when I got into the venue, I quickly scoped out the merch and then cemented myself to a
vantage point in time for Impalement to take to the stage. As the band hit the stage all hell broke
loose, Blackened Death Metal played at an impressive speed and precision, it was just mesmerising
to observe. Beliath struck an impressive conductor role and spat out vocals with maniacal power and
belief, with Nekroking hammering the bass into submission to the side. As the all too short set drew
to a close, a lasting impression had been burnt into my soul and I made a mental note that if nothing
else, I need to catch this band whenever they decide to grace our shores again. They were a
formidable addition to the United Titans Tour and certainly the infamous ‘Bar’ had been set very
high for the goliaths that were to follow to try and reach. (on reflection, it has to controversially be
said that Impalement were my band of the night, absolutely awesome!)
As Vader appeared before us and tore into their set it was evident from the start that the Polish
Death Metal Behemoths were serious and out to destroy this place. It was a masterpiece in the art
of Death Metal from start to finish, Peter commanded from the front and the vocals were dominant
and forceful, each word delivered with muscle and influence, demanding violence with every syllable
propelled from his lungs. The flanks were in good hands too, the string work was compelling and
magnetic and the drum work from the rear of the stage was ferocious and savage, injecting a raging
bull stampeding through the set with ease. The set was top heavy with tracks from the majestic and
fearsome ‘De Profundis’ with the rest of the set made up of tracks spanning selected works from the
back catalogue, utilising another six of the band’s historic albums. The highlight of the set for me was
the absolutely crushing and decimating ‘What Colour Is Your Blood’ and ‘Reborn In Flames.’ A huge
success of a set and one that left us, as always with a Vader set, counting down the days until they
might just pay us another visit.
Up next, Germanic Black Metal, and Black Metal delivered with absolute majesty and brutality.
Marduk hit the stage and powered directly into ‘Werwolf,’ setting out their intentions from the off,
the true desire to liberate their set with obnoxious menace and hostility. As the set progressed,
Mortuus demanded more from the crowd, challenging the crowd by his very presence, to be more
aggressive and brutal which they duly obliged with. The set was decorated with juggernauts of tracks
from their massive history, ‘Frontschwein,’ ‘Viktoria’ and ‘Bleached Bones’ were all powerhouses
and helped infuse even more brutality, spite and malevolence into the evening. The pinnacle of the
set has to be the absolutely colossal ‘Panzer Division Marduk’, raw power and aggression ramped up
to maximum, and all delivered with Marduk are a staple in any respectable black metal fans
collection and live they are a true force to be reckoned with.
An absolute juggernaut of a touring package and one which I was very pleased to have been witness
to. This was extreme music delivered with precision, power poise and venom. A true celebration of
Europe’s finest in the world of black and death metal. Gentleman, thank you.