On February the second, Behemoth and Cradle of Filth played a sold out co-headlining show at London’s Forum. Support also came in the form of Svarttjern, Inquistion and In Solitude.
Svarttjern kicked off the show, and despite starting at 5:30 on a Monday there is already a decent sized crowd in there to see them. Decked out in full black metal attire, complete with corpse paint and spikes, the Norwegians put on a good show, rattling through their great black metal numbers with good energy and stage presence. With their latest album “Ultimatum Necrophilia” being a fantastic effort, their set is equally impressive and goes over well.
Columbian’s two piece Inquisition have a big following, and the venue is starting to pack out by the time they come on. Despite being a two piece consisting of just the drummer, and vocalist/guitarist, they manage to have a good sound and stage presence. With a big Immortal influence, from the riffs to the Abbath-like burping vocal style, they are energetic, the music is excellent and the crowd really enjoy the show. Ending with the fantastic “Infinite Interstellar Genocide” they leave the Inquisition fans in the audience wanting more.
In Solitude were next, and despite being an excellent band, their presence on this bill is a bit odd, playing traditional metal on a lineup with four extreme metal bands. Coming out on stage behind a wall of dry ice, so the members were barely visible, the atmosphere is eerie and it should’ve suited their music well. Unfortunately, their sound mix was absolutely atrocious. The guitars were far too muddy, and the riffs pretty indiscernible, while Pelle’s voice is barely audible, lost in the mud. With their set getting cut short after the song “Sister” they really had no luck whatsoever, and they’re massively disappointing, given how good their 2013 album Sister was.
Cradle of Filth had no such sound issues though, and they’re in excellent form. Dani Filth’s screech is hideously fantastic, and the rest of the band around him are great too. With an excellent old school setlist, the band ferociously rattle off an excellent array of songs, despite both guitarists having stand ins for the tour, with “Summer Dying Fast”and “Nymphetamine (Fix)” being excellent, while “Born in a Burial Gown” is the best of the lot. With an encore of “Funeral in Carpathia” the bands set is a really good one, and the packed out crowd really enjoy it.
The main act of course though is Behemoth, on the back of their incredible new album “The Satanist”, being the best metal album of the year so far. Their set is absolutely ferocious, opening with “Blow your Trumpets, Gabriel”, they play a lot of songs from the new album, alongside a mix of older classics, such as the brilliant “Christians to the Lions” which is one of the highlights of the set. The band is on incredible form, with Nergal’s tremendous roar being at its best, he really drives the crowd into a frenzy throughout, interacting with them excellently. They closed the set with the brilliant “Chant for Eschaton 2000”, before coming back to play “O Father O Satan O Sun!” as a terrific encore, Nergal coming back with a really evil looking mask, its one of their best songs by far, a perfect hymn to Satan, and the crowd absolutely love it. The Poles really show why they’re one of the best bands in extreme metal, not just on the album, but also in the live arena.
Overall it’s a great gig, and apart from the disappointing sound of In Solitude, all the bands put on a great show, and its definitely one the crowd will remember for a long time.