In the tenth year of their existence after forming from the ashes of Windir, Vreid have embarked on a special ‘Sognametal’ tour, paying tribute to the late Valfar by playing special sets featuring songs from Vreid, Windir and Ulcus. Having played several festivals in the summer, they embarked on a UK tour and were at London’s Underworld last week with fellow Norwegian’s Posthum in support.
Posthum have just released their third album The Black Northern Ritual, and though a solid and enjoyable album, there’s nothing that’s really special about it. And the same could be said about their live set – although they have solid songs and a decent performance, there’s just nothing that really sets them apart from other bands. They played a mix of songs from all three of their albums and that kept their set a little varied compared with the new album, and Jon’s vocals are just as savage live as they are on record. Moving between thrashier riffy sections and more laid back tremolo picked atmospheric parts the guitar parts are interesting, but the mid paced drumming is pretty average. They’re certainly enjoyable, and put on a good performance during their half an hour, but they’re not going to be reaching headliner status soon.
Vreid however are something of a black metal powerhouse, especially when playing the older material from Windir, and they blew Posthum away with a sublime performance. Combining great songs with a ferocious stage presencethey nailed it from start to finish, and with Valfar’s brother Vegard joining them on vocals it brought a great authenticity to the performance of Windir songs, which made up half of an engrossing set. His voice was particularly passionate, heartfelt and downright vicious, and from the fun the band seemed to be having on stage the performance was in all ways a celebration of Valfar’s music. There wasn’t a bad song in the set, but the highlights for sure were the atmospheric Krigaren si gravferd from the Windir days , and the icy cold heaviness of Ulcus song The Profound Power. With a fantastically heavy sound, great songs and enthusiastic performance, Vreid are a brilliant live act, and when featuring the old Windir classics these ‘Sognametal’ sets are unmissable.