LORD VICAR / HADRON
For some reason I haven't gotten around to check out opening acts prior to the gigs much lately. It's of course very interesting to get the first impression from the performance too. HADRON started off a little tentatively with “Imprisoned” and the gnawing groove got me hooked. It's of course not easy to kick start a show with a crowd hiding in the shadows either. But HADORN's SABBATH-ish styled music soon lured people out of the dark and into the music. This was absolutely a really pleasant meet. The Danish scene has more to discover it seems. HARDON's music also brought me back to the dawn of the Doom era, the beginning of the 90's and the very early outings from SOLSTICE, MIRROR OF DECEPTION and so on. Anders Rusholt Lorentzen’s guitar-sound landed in the same genre also. To have a single guitar can be very unforgiving, especially when talking about slow and heavy riffs. In the solos it all became a little weak. I don't know if it was the sound at Loppen or the setup for bassplayer Martin Schjoldager Nielsen that didn't fill out the sound. But that's basically all to comment about, else everything sounded really cool.
Towards the end of the set HADRON changed from English to Danish. I still don't understand much of it but the nature of the language as well as all other Nordic tongues makes the phrasing in the vocal lines very different. This trick really set HARDON apart and it sounded very cool, both “Fortiden” and “Solnedgang” became favorites in the set.
Massive “Fear no Evil” finished the great set from HADRON, their beat really sucked me in to the music. The Danish scene keeps surprising me, this too was a very pleasant gig by a good and interesting band.
02. “In Need Of...”
03. “Conduct To Oblivion”
08. “Fear No Evil”
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Has anyone seen our vocalist? The band started to call out for Chritus when they were ready to go and he was nowhere to be seen... After a few shout-outs a very happy vocalist jumped on stage and LORD VICAR could start their set. First out, “Breaking The Circle” got the band moving slowly. It's fantastic how such minimal music can be intense when done right. I mean, it's slow and on occasion very long chords or a single note. But when a band has the nerve it just works. Half of the set is from latest release, “Gates Of Flesh” and then has a good mix towards the older material. It's of course no wonder that old school “Down The Nails” and “The Last Of The Templars”, that's always the case. I mean, the old material is more familiar to the crowd. But it still is good support shown for LORD VICAR. I thought they would pack out the place though but at half full Loppen get intense anyway.
Chritus finished his beer, with some help from the rest of the band, halfway through the set and in a long instrumental passage, I think it was in “Leper, Leper” he just ran off to the bar for a refill. The look on his colleagues’ faces was priceless. When it took a while for him to get back Kimi started to look a little worried as the next verse approached. Chritus made it back and Kimi could guide him into his next vocal passage. Beers were brought for everyone and the band seemed happy about that, or was it relief that their vocalist was back on stage?
Most of LORD VICAR's set sounded amazing. But as their music is minimal, every little flaw shows very clearly. And on a few occasions the band wasn't in sync. It was one of those parts when Kimi was playing with clean sound and the bass was supposed to mark the first beat of the bar. And when that's not spot on... Also, Kimi acted as a musical director and guided the band through the songs, mainly Chritus who of course didn't know the lyrics either. This doesn't really matter much but is a bit unfortunate. Because having Kimi, as well as bassist Rich Jones turned the way they were facing each other rather than the crowd really kills the interaction with the crowd. And, when things were spot on, like for up-tempo “The Green Man” LORD VICAR sounded phenomenal.
Another song standing out was “Birth Of Wine”, again Kimi with clean sound and the verse part sounded incredible, goose-bump moment. The flow he has in this type of playing is outstanding, it sounded fantastic. That's why the small swerves and flaws bug me. If the delivery would have been as good straight through the show as the high points this would have qualified as show of the year. Now it was only a good show.
LORD VICAR setlist:
01. “Breaking The Circle”
02. “Down The Nails”
03. “The Last Of The Templars”
04. “Leper, Leper”
05. “The Green Man”
06. “The Fear Of Being Crushed”
07. “Birth Of Wine”
08. “The Funeral Pyre”
09. “Between The Blue Temple And The North Tower”
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