Who could it be, who could it be? I can’t imagine….could it beeee SATAN? – The Church Lady – Saturday Night Live
We’ve had some really killer tours this spring in Vancouver lately but none of them had a Black Metal band for a headliner. That all changed tonight when the Decibel Tour rolled into The Vogue Theatre (MRG Promotions) in Vancouver when we are served with a Black Metal sandwich with Black Braid, 200 Stab Wounds, Cattle Decapitation and headliners Dark Funeral.
Scandinavia is famous for churning out some of the thee best Black Metal bands on the planet like Dimmu Borgir, Bathory, Mayhem, Burzum, Emperor, Enslaved, and Immortal as some of the finest examples. Part of the 2nd wave of them is the band Dark Funeral, who started back in 1993 from Stockholm Sweden. They have released 7 albums to date with the latest being We Are the Apocalpse in 2022.
At 10pm, the band slowly walks out in full black metal costume and corpse paint. Lead vocalist Heljamadr is wearing a long black coat looking like the song they start off with, which is a new one “Nosferatu” from We Are the Apocalypse. On the right side, founding member Lord Ahriman on guitar, with Chaq Mol on guitar on the far left with Adra-Melek on bass just to the left of drummer Jalomaah.
“Hail Murder” and thereafter “My Funeral” they go to is next and the audience is absolutely rabid in this nearly sold out facility. Heljamadr’s voice is really strong, yet scolding and very clear in the mix of the guitars especially with “666 Voices Inside”. Black Metal is similar to say punk music where the vocals are the main feature and not so much the rest but the guitar attack is not missing with Dark Funeral.
Song 6 with “Goddess of Sodomy” from Diabolis Interium (2001), Heljamadr is waving a flogger around while he sings this one. Not a good time to rush the stage or be a bad bouncer.
Song 7, its time for all the audience to allegiance to Satan with repeating after Heljamadr “Hail Satan!” 4 times and they move into “The Secrets of the Black Arts” which ends with a massive scream.
Thereafter, it’s kinda of a ballad with “When I’m Gone” – well at least to Dark Funeral fan standards – as it’s a pretty slow one from the We are the Apocalypse album. This song gives the moshpit a little bit of a breather.
“Unchain My Soul” is next. Some crazy high speed drumming in this one from Jalomaah. Thereafter, we move to what is my favorite song of the night “Nail Them to the Cross” from Where Shadows Forever Reign (2016).
They end the 13 song set with another from the new album “Let the Devil In” and one more with “Where the Shadows Forever Regin”.
I have seen the last 3 visits to Vancouver with Dark Funeral (last year with Cannibal Corpse), and I can safely say this was the best performance yet. They didn’t blanket themselves in total darkness and fog, which is nice to be able to see what you are listening to unlike the last 2 visits. The sound was really good this night, vocals (and the rest of the band) were top notch the entire gig. This is top of the line Nordic Black Metal, it doesn’t get much better than this!