Some shows stand as a reminder for how unique of an experience it should be. As the Blasfemia Amerika tour launched on the east coast, I had a feeling Behemoth would deliver such a performance and they did not disappoint, nor did their tourmate, Myrkur.
As I stood in wait at Webster Hall, the stage shrouded in darkness, I felt the crowd shift, a sudden tension that was not there a moment prior. Before I had time to think, a lone spotlight fell to the floor, illuminating Amalie Bruun of Myrkur. Blond hair swept forward, hiding her face, she began playing the piano and filling the hall with her ethereal voice. This was my first time seeing Myrkur live and I was completely enthralled.
This one woman metal project from Denmark is the support for Behemoth on their Blasfemia tour. Were I given the opportunity to choose a supporting act, I could think of no one better that Myrkur. Her music is unique, sincere, and engaging.
As she stood clutching her wooden, double mic stand, light streaming behind her, the scene laid before everyone’e eyes was something almost mystical. There is a grace to Amalie Bruun that is difficult to repeat even when she is ferociously screaming to the crowd, fangs bared. Myrkur played such songs as “Morden” and “Debt i sloven” from her 2015 release M. Their final song was a cover of “Song to Hall up High” by Bathory. It is rare to hear such extraordinary music from an opening act but she completely entranced the crowd and myself.
After a brief set change, two monitors light up. To the right side, standing hooded in front of one monitor, you can vaguely make out Orion. Eyes staring out from under his hood, he stand statuesque as strobes of light begin to go off. He remains motionless as “Blow Your Trumpets Gabriel” begins. In a flash, he is joined by Nergal and Seth, who emerge from shadows and smoke and all hell breaks loose.
Seeing Behemoth live is more akin to participating in a dark ritual than a concert, from Nergal swinging a thurible of incense to offering unholy communion to those lucky fans in the front rows. He walked off stage briefly only to return with blood smeared across his forehead and as he sang, he looked to the crowd with primal eyes, a ferocity unmatched by many.
The entire show was sure adrenaline and as Nergal later described it, an utterly “orgasmic” experience. I would go so far as to say that any band who hopes to be worth their salt, should take a page from the book of Behemoth. There is not a single moment of their show that is dull, without energy, or without an attention to detail. These guys go full throttle from start to finish and so does their crowd.
They played numerous songs from their most recent release, The Satanist such as “Ben Sahar” and “O Father O Satan O Sun!” Prior to the fourth song in their set, “Ora Pro Nobis Lucifer,” Nergal took to one knee, head bowed and arms spread wide as a beam of white light shone upon his back. In such a simple moment, there was so much power that surrounded him and it lit wildfire in the crowd. As he rose, you could feel the surge, almost as if he had his own gravity.
As their set was nearing it’s close, Behemoth came back to stage after a brief interlude. They were cloaked in black with horned masks on and they stood at attention, facing the crowd. Seth and Orion flanked drummer, Inferno as Nergal stood center stage. Even with minimal movement, they were as imposing as ever and continued to lay waste to Webster Hall.
Behemoth will continue their tour back in Europe until mid-fall, check their Facebook page for the latest dates here. I look forward to seeing more of their progression in the future. Behemoth is a band that is utterly fearless in their musical pursuits. They have continued to evolve over the years and with Nergal at the helm, I am sure they will have plenty of new tricks up their sleeves.
Check out our images of Myrkur and Behemoth below! (Click the thumbnails to open the gallery)