Arkhon Infaustus, Demonomancy, The Infernal Sea, Vacivus.
@ Boston Music Room
24th March 2018
Review by Thomas James Henry Saunders
Photography by Jo Blackened
French black metal pioneers Arkhon Infaustus descend tonight upon the Boston Music Rooms in North London as part of their European tour, which has taken them through their homeland of France, now into the UK and later to Poland among many other destinations.
The venue is sparse as we enter, with opening act Vacivus finishing off their sound checks before starting the night’s fury and noise. The few members of the crowd that have wandered in all gather as Vacivus take to the stage.
With their death metal vocals and strong, consistent metal sound, the small crowd gathered by the stage are instantly engrossed by these Sunderland-based noise artists.
With the blue lighting effects and stoic physical form, Vacivus are a band that relies on their technical blasts to engage with their audience, and that they do enthusiastically.
Vocalist Nick Craggs has a menacing posture and presence upon the stage, appearing as though wanting to encourage a mosh pit! His vocal prowess is evident, producing a consistently powerful set of growls and barks, rising above the cacophony of the instruments around him.
Musically, they are a rough beast and an assault on the senses, pushing out uncompromising death metal sound with intense power.
As a death metal band, they were quite generic but they do suit tonight’s line up. They work on stage well together, but from a purely live experience stand-point, I feel they could’ve interacted with the audience a little more.
They’re a strong 4-piece act indeed, but one that could do with a little more charisma to really stand out as a prominent death metal act, certainly a band to catch again though.
After a break, during which the crowd nearly triples in size, blackened death metal band The Infernal Sea comes down from the Fens. They take to the stage in their newly redesigned masks and cultist robes in ‘pious’ fashion.
The onslaught of furious opening track “Way Of The Wolf” makes quick work of bringing in a tight crowd straight to the front of the stage. Their sound, well known throughout London’s black metal scene, is as powerful as ever, hitting a steady and exciting professionalism as they blast their punk-inspired riffs out across the crowd.
The interaction with them is always a minimal affair, but given their appearance, in their hoods, cloaks and plague masks, the atmosphere of the event is one of visual appearance and style rather than words.
After an introduction from the vocalist, behind his sigil-crested face mask, they go straight into the blast beat fury that is “Agents Of Satan”; theatrical smoke bellows out around them as they are engulfed in darkness.
The crowd are already enthralled by this point, headbanging and cheering along with glee.
As an extra to tonight’s set, they include a new track simply entitled “New, Untitled”. Going by this song alone, we see the band heading for an even greater level of ferocity for their upcoming album. They are certainly a strong force and are only getting more powerful with each release, and this seemingly will be no different.
Strangely enough, the only technical issue of the set came about during the end of the last song whereby the vocalist’s microphone stopped working, leaving the band without vocals until the last verse, by which point a technician had hurriedly swapped it out for a spare microphone stand. Luckily this didn’t impact on their energy or performance and the crowd loved them!
The Infernal Sea Setlist:
Way Of The Wolf
Agents Of Satan
Into The Unknown
During the break everyone relaxes a little, heading out to the smoking area or to the merchandise stands and bar. By the time the stage is set for the next act of tonight the crowd is once again hungry for their feast of blast beats and crushing riffs.
Next on, the penultimate band of tonight’s acts are Rome’s Demonomancy
As part of the European tour along with Arkhon-Infaustus, they’re a self-styled death metal act, leaning toward Germanic thrash metal with aggressive riffs and vocals effects.
Being a 3-piece act, it’s impressive that the still manage powerful dual vocals from guitarist “The Unbabtized Shepherd” and drummer “Herald Of The Outer Realm”.
Their dual screams and rough tones add a great layer of depth upon their stripped-down, but nonetheless powerful, ensemble, playing in darkness with the stage filled with fog from the smoke machine.
They are a band that truly enjoys the spectacle of live performances, calling out and goading the crowd at various points throughout their set. Their enthusiasm was returned to them in double by the eager crowd, whom by now were a swaying, headbanging mess, gorging on everything Demonomancy had to offer.
They managed to massively excite the crowd with their second to last song, a Celtic Frost cover “The Usurper”. It sends the crowds into a fury as they shout along, form a small mosh pit and fully engage with the fierce Italian death metallers.
Towards the end of their set they bid farewell to the crowd, who just want more! Certainly an act to liven up any bill.
Fiery Herald Unbound (The Victorious Predator)
Archaic Remnants Of The Numinous
At The Great Gates To The Black Doom
Involution Of Spirit Into Mass
The Last Hymn To Eschaton
The Day Of The Lord
The Usurper (Celtic Frost cover)
Impious Revelation (Bestiality Prevails)
After a shorter break, with the venue fully packed and the front rows waiting in fiery anticipation, Arkhon-Infaustus appear with their apocalyptic sounding dirge of intro track “Amphessatamine Nexion”, to chilling effect.
They offer their blend of black and death metal onslaught with a powerful presence that is wholly felt by the enthusiastic crowd as they push and gather closer.
Deviant Von Blakk, vocalist & guitarist, is a precise and strong live presence as he blasts through his set list with impeccable guitar work and a distinct, menacing vocal style.
His vocals fall somewhere between a classic death metal growl and a much more theatrical structure. It really helps solidify their dark brooding sound whilst they remain a high tempo death-ened black metal act.
On drums, Skvm keeps the pace and provides the powerful blast beats that constantly whip up the crowd into a fever of pumping fists and heads!
The sheer aggression and excitement felt like it was anticipating the opening of a pit throughout the whole set, but alas no such pit develops, due to the small stage area within the venue.
As they play through the finale of “Whirlwind Journey”, the atmosphere is strong and the band appear equal parts exhausted and triumphant.
A hugely enjoyable night and a great final act in Arkhon Infaustus. As the crowd dissipates, everyone sets off in search of bars, eagerly discussing the bands of the evening! A great night put on by IsengardPromotions.
Arkhon Infaustus setlist
Dead Cunt Maniac
When They Have Called
The Precipice Where Souls Slither
The Ominous Circle
Silent Voices Of Perversion
The Infernal Sea