Words: Sera Jones
Photos: Charlyn Cameron
A clear Sunday night at the Triffid in Brisbane bore witness to a dark performance by Norway’s two-piece Satyricon, supported by Australia’s own rising metal outfit, Deadspace. Bringing fantastic new music from their latest album, “Deep Calleth Upon Deep”, released in September last year, Australians had the pleasure of seeing the powerful performances of both old and new material by the band. After postponing their Australia and Japan tour dates, moving them from April to September instead, Satyricon had a lot of hungry Aussie fans to please upon arriving on our shores. Having played through Perth, Melbourne, Canberra and Sydney, the devilish duo brought the “Deep Calleth Upon Down Under” tour to its finale in Brisbane last night.
Darkly-clad metalheads blended in with the dusky evening as they gradually filled the venue; as the crowd grew, so too did the palpable sense of excitement. At 8pm, a half-filled venue greeted the corpse-painted Perth outfit called Deadspace as they wasted no time in jumping into their first song. Boasting a home-grown blend of the darkest black metal, offset by notes of emotion and urgency and interspersed with some damn satisfying blast beats, Deadspace proved to be a solid support for the legendary Satyricon. The lead singer brought the intensity to the audience by climbing onto the barrier to utter his gritty screams and growls, while the rest of the band thrashed around the stage without a single mistake played. Unfortunately this tour is to be their bassist’s last tour with the band before parting ways, but this only served to make their set all the more energetic and impressive.
After a short wait, it was suddenly time for the band we were all waiting for. The now near- full venue was abuzz with anticipation and before long, the air in the venue seemed to grow heavy as Satyricon’s intro song began playing. With a roar from the crowd, Satyr and Frost themselves stepped onstage and hurled us full-tilt into their opening song, Midnight Serpent. From there on out, Satyricorn managed wind the crowd up until it was a heaving, multi-headed beast under the command of the musicians before them. Beer-wielding crowd-surfers threw themselves over the crowd, while the unrelenting riffs and drumming had everyone else violently head-banging.
Satyr himself cut a tall, dark and imposing figure at the forefront of the stage as he led the band through song after crushing song. New songs like Deep Calleth Upon Deep and older songs like Mother North were received with equal measures of passion and aggression. The mysterious frontman took a moment to reminisce before playing Now, Diabolical, recalling when they played the same song 12 years ago during their first Australian tour. Now, Diabolical opened up some absolutely insane mosh pits, driving the temperature of the room through the roof as Frost’s ageless power behind his drum kit threatened to bring the roof down.
Satyricon’s encore showed no signs of slowing down, with the band storming the stage after a brief break to perform The Pentagram Burns, churning their fans into a raging mass for the last 15 minutes of their set. Ending the night with the vicious and perfectly executed K.I.N.G., Satyricon triumphantly proved themselves as one of the world’s most long-enduring and prestigious black metal acts of the past and today, while punters left the venue sweaty and dazed, with that tell-tale grin of a metalhead who has just been lifted on top of the world.
I sincerely wish the night had sold better; while the pits were raging regardless, it would have been nice to see a better turnout for a band who had travelled so far to play. But, alas, a concert on a Sunday night is forever doomed to underperform. Nevertheless, Satyricon were overwhelmingly phenomenal to observe onstage. Satyr delivered a cool, calm and focussed performance, executing his vocals with immaculate technique and keeping the crowd under his dark spell. Frost was awe-inspiring to watch as he smashed his way through each song, delivering bone-vibrating blows to his kit with brutal technical prowess. Their live band members provided each song room to sprawl into its soundscape, lending them a more intense and multi-layered dynamic that brought their live sound to life. After the intensely satisfying show last night, I sincerely hope to see Satyricon back in Australia sometime in the near future. We at Overdrive would like to give a huge thanks to Destroy All Lines for bringing the band out to us, and I hope I can happily say on the behalf of all metalheads in Brisbane that we can’t wait to see Satyr and Frost again!