In Prague, the heart of Europe, in Forum Karlín, the mighty Behemoth of Poland torn the venue apart but let’s take the things one by one as concert started with support band and second headliner. 12.1.2019. Here is the report and full gallery.
The event started on January 12th 2019 on early evening hours and there was a striking queue in front of the entrance was about 50-100m long. Things went well though and thankfully it was going forward smoothly. We were also pretty entertained by one metal guy who happened to consume plenty of alcoholic beverages, so it was actually funny how friendly he was.
Fórum Karlín itself has three floors, but only the bottom one was open as there were not so many tickets were actually sold. After short acclimatization of visitors, the first band started. Wolves in the Throne Room was the support band and they had about 30 minutes to rock the crowd on a dimly lit stage. The show was probably what one would expect. Atmospheric black metal surely did not disappoint, but I was missing something. The show was not dirty nor clean enough for the genre and I was missing more emotions or total coldness in it. It was a bit neutral for my taste. As a massive fan of the genre myself, maybe my expectations were just too high. Take this opinion with a grain of salt.
Who did not disappoint and were, to my surprise, great At the Gates. They performed at the Brutal Assault 2018 festival as well, but I was not that much impressed with their gig. Here it was totally different. I do not remember if the setlist was the same or similar, but in Forum Karlín, it was a total blast. The sound was great, the energy could be felt everywhere, punching all the time, every song was without weak moments. Maybe it was due the proximity between fans and stage or thanks to the frontman Tompa and his performance. That guy cannot deny his past in Disfear and interest in crust scene. Other musicians were perfect as well, of course. Just not as lively nor frolicking as their singing frontman.
The highlight and the reason most people showed up at the venue was surely polish giant Behemoth and new Ecclesia Diabolica Evropa Tour which promoted their new album I Loved You At Your Darkest. They presented a new, slightly altered image which I found surprisingly less brutal and bit more theatrical, I would say. I’m not a particular fan of this approach, but it is not that bad or noticeable for most. The guys are real showoffs who want their fans to enjoy their art not with their ears only but also with their eyes. Adam Darski of Behemoth also changed some touches with fans in the first rows and my guess is, if the security guys would not had held him, Nergal would maybe even enjoyed crowdsurfing. The setlist consisted of mostly new album stuff. Some legendary song could be heard as well though, namely, Daimonos, Conquer All, Decade of Therion, Slaves Shall Serve. Satanist’s album hymn Blow Your Trumpets Gabriel has been played as well. We sadly didn’t get pompous O Father, O Satan, O Sun anymore, but what can you do… The show lasted for an hour and a half and had also some rich effects including pyrotechnics, steam streams and nice lights which added a lot to the overall atmosphere. As the gig started with an intro from the new album, at the end we got served with the outro piece during which the members had drums and performed small dramatical show ending.
The concert is best to be described as a big success. Music-wise, I was mostly surprised with At The Gates performance, as I came for Behemoth and I was curious about Wolves in the Throne Room. Those expectations… Organisation by Obscure Promotion was also nice and things went smoothly. Thank you.