SATYRICON took the stage for the first time this past weekend at Rockefeller in Olso, Norway to perform the first of several shows to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the masterpiece, Nemesis Divina. The show had special significance in that it was the first time the band had performed since Satyrannounced his brain tumor diagnosis back in October 2015.
“Thanks for coming out last night. A few months ago I wondered if it was the end of Satyricon. To be back on stage again, in front of my people, was obviously powerful. I have a long way to go, but last night was a solid first step. #thankyou ?Jorunn”
SATYRICON‘s Satyr recently announced that he has been diagnosed with a brain tumor. The unfortunate news comes during the demo sessions of the follow up to Satyricon. He announced the news on his Instagram:
“I’m going home. I got extremely sick 8 days ago and was rushed to hospital. Scans have shown that there is a blind passenger in my head. Most likely it is benign. I can live with it as long as it does not grow bigger. Removing it is extremely complicated and should only be done if it grows into a size where it is a matter of life and death. We all get our set of cards and this happened to be one of mine. There are so many people who have to deal with much worse things than I do, so I do not feel sorry for myself. I have a great family, lots of friends, Satyricon, Wongraven Wines and many people who support my endeavours all over the world. I will spend the next two weeks trying to get my strength back, then try to starting writing on the new Satyricon again and pick up where I left on all my wine projects…#thankyou”
In 2011, the world knows and reveres legendary Norwegian black metal bands such as EMPEROR, MAYHEM, IMMORTAL, and SATYRICON. But where’s the love for the seminal Norwegian band that helped to spur the creative explosion of the 90’s black metal scene?
Formed in 1989, STIGMA DIABOLICUM, which would later be named THORNS, helped to pioneer the cold, black atmospheres and riffing style that would become synonymous with the label “Norwegian black metal.” The band only have two official releases, which include the godly self-titled album from 2001 and the equally stimulating 1998 collaboration with EMPEROR that are both available on Satyr‘s Moonfog Productions. Prior to that the band had two demos/rehearsal tapes, Grymyrk and Trøndertun. Thankfully, the good people at Kyrck Productions released both on a limited edition release under the THORNS name entitled Stigma Diabolicum. As the side note, Kyrck Productions has put out a lot of rare demos/early releases by, now, legendary black metal bands. Check them out.
By their nature, the songs on Stigma Diabolicum are raw and unrefined in their production values, performance, and songwriting. But man, you can hear and feel the birth of a new sound in these songs. Plus, it’s so easy to hear how influential this band was when you compare it to what followed. One of the most obvious homages can be found in DISSECTION‘s “Where Dead Angels Lie” by way of THORNS‘ “Aerie Descent.”
If you can get your hands on this limited compilation, do not hesitate.
Anticipation for this show was high as kids started waiting outside the Key Club as early as 5pm. Taiwanese extreme metallers CHTHONIC opened the show with a short but powerful set. It was clear from the audience reaction that a significant amount of people were there to see the band play. CHTHONIC had great stage presence and played well. Vocalist Freddy made sure that the audience knew that they were proud to be from Taiwan. The band also took the time to meet with fans after their performance. There was a good number of fans who waited patiently for their chance to get their pictures taken with CHTHONIC and get their merchandise autographed. It was surprising that after the band had finished up their meet and greet, a noticeable number of attendees left the Key Club.
As the night wore on, incoming fans packed the Key Club in order to see headliners SATYRICON. The band played songs predominantly from their last three albums with a few old ones from their classic, Nemesis Divina. The fact their SATYRICON‘s newer material is mid-paced and has many slow plotting sections caused numerous moments of stagnation in the adrenaline department. It may have left some fans wanting a more balanced set in terms of tempo.
Band mastermind Satyr was pretty vocal with the crowd and never failed to show his appreciation for the fans throughout their set. He too was proud to represent the country that the band were from. Satyr also busted out his guitar for a few songs as well. Strangely enough, his guitar was louder and better sounding than that of his two session guitarists.
The star of the show was drummer Frost. After all my years of going to shows, Frost‘s performance was by far the best drum performance that I’ve ever seen. It was truly godlike. He blasted faster than even Flo from CRYPTOPSY, and his blastbeats were super tight and clean. You could see his hair flying through the air as he did the helicopter headbang all night. The drums sounded absolutely immaculate in quality. He played flawlessly and if anything, he made the songs sound better live. Frost also rewrote his drum parts for the older songs by adding plenty of extra intensity and skill.