Live report – Under the Doom Fest VI

Under the Doom Fest VI… To be honest the majority of the bands I only know by name. Only a few I know musically and from those bands? Only the first releases. Yes, it’s true. Beforehand, I could have listened to the bands I did not know and even listen to the latest releases of those that I only knew the first releases from … But … I decided not to do this and go on an adventure… And what an adventure…

Day 1 

Wyatt E…
Originally from Israel but now located in Belgium. They were the first band of the day. They were one of the bands that I wanted to see. They didn’t start so well due to some problems with the sound. There were two guitars, one I didn’t hear very well, with the other doing some keys, and one drum player. They managed to create an atmosphere that I really enjoyed. A band that is within the musical style of drone/doom and some experimentalism. The visuals that the band uses gives an obscure feeling to them and it fits very well with the band’s sound. The presence on the stage was felt by the musicians and they transmitted that to the audience. Just a few persons at that moment but I noticed that everyone was feeling the music, and the little applause that could be heard was strong. +/- the second half of the concert the band finally had a good sound, much more balanced and level. If I will see them alive again I do not know, but if I have the chance I will see them again. Positive concert.

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The Wounded…
They are from the Netherlands… Didn’t know anything from them, concerning the music they play. They sound to me a mix of Reamonn from Germany and To Die For!!!! Sounds strange? Yes, but these were the first bands that came to my head while they were playing. It’s a mix of Rock with Gothic Metal. Clean voices, a distortion with the mix of the two above bands mentioned. Not bad. Seriously. The mix they do is good. Those six guys on stage manage to give a good concert. I admit that is not my music style – far off – but the songs flowed very well in the air and it was pleasant to see the performance of this band. They did play a cover of Nirvana “Smells like Teen Spirit”. Played with them one style. Well done for that. Very well achieved. Congratulations on that. Final words… Positive surprise.

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Desire…
They are from Portugal and this band was one of the bands I wanted to see. Many many many years ago was the last time I saw them, I think it was around 2002 or 2003, so… I was with good expectations to see them. And it was good. Some small problems with the sound, the violin from Tiago Flores (Guest) from the Portuguese band Corvos, was not perfectly heard and is an instrument that requires sound quality to be heard. The soprano voice from Rute Fevereiro (Guest) from Enchantya managed to give a “charm” to the melancholy of the sound of Desire. Desire gave a good show. They tried to pick the best songs but it wasn’t possible due the time they had for the concert. More or less in the middle of the concert, they showed us a new song that will be available on a future album. I didn’t understand correctly the complete name of the song, but I know that it begins with “Scars of…” (sorry about that). In resume the sound was good. I could hear everything in good conditions (except the violin). Well done.

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While Heaven Wept…
I was curious to see them. Uh la la… This American band gave a really good show. Honestly. I felt complete with the sound and the performance. I’m honest and I admit that I do not know everything from them. Just know a few songs and just a few things about the members. But it doesn’t matter. Why? Because at the end of the concert I was with my mouth open and my eyes, they started to shine with the musical quality that I saw. Really really good. The professionalism, the songs, the atmosphere they managed to create in that live performance, the keys that were not very high, but enough to listen and understand. The bass lines, the solos, the riffs, everything. Even the voice from Rain Irving (a type of voice typically Power Metal, and normally I do not sympathize..) was good. Really. This band surprised me in a very positive way. The changes in the rhythms, the bass lines, the riffs…Very good. While Heaven Wept is an amazing band. In the future, if I have the chance to see them again … I will. Very very very good. If you have the chance to see them, do it. Well worth it.

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Draconian…
Bummmmm… They started with a strong sound, heavy distortion and the mix of the Female/Male voice worked very well. A kind of Beauty/Beast mix. The male vocalist has a very strong voice and the female such a beautiful voice. But sadly some feedback started to appear and the harmony created at the beginning started to disappear. Draconian do a mix of Gothic/Doom, at least to me. The Gothic part is mainly related to her voice, all the rest is Doom, a strong one to be true. Good riffs, good passages. The third music starts and…. wow… Very good start. Strong riffs, very powerful and the interplay between the voices is amazing. The sound at this moment was finally on the top, please Mr. Sound Engineer, don’t ruin it… But what it starts well also started to sound a bit boring, yes, it’s true… The last song, in my opinion, wasn’t necessary, maybe because I was tired or started to be impatient for being too much time in the same place… In general was a positive concert… (Note: Please don’t say “Gracias” at the end of the songs when we cheer – the Portugueses don’t like it).

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Arcturus…

The band that really moved me for this day (Just because of the first two releases and the only releases of theirs I know)… And… They didn’t start very well. Not their problem, of course, they were professional. The sound… Mr. Sound Engineer, what the hell did you do? Really? Till the third song, no one heard the guitar and the keys were really high… The sound that Arcturus do, they need to have a good sound quality, if not, no one will understand. But they were professional and they stood there with a good posture and the vocalist always talking with the audience. Hellhammer on the drums surrounded by a lot of cymbals and drum thrum and he played in all. Skoll the bass player… Always with the best feeling while he is playing. They played songs that I didn’t know or recognize, but at the same time was good in order to see how they sound live. The high vocals from ICS Vortex are good but… Sometimes when they enter in my ears… Holy macaroni… At the end of the concert, I was tired, almost 2 am and I was there since 6 pm… So the last part of the concert didn’t sound to me so well. But still there, and even with the sound that was not so good, it was a kind of positive concert… I think… Maybe next time…

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Day 2

Collapse Of Light???
It should be Oceanwake from Finland but they didn’t appear. I tried to find out why but I didn’t. So back to Collapse of Light… They are from Portugal and the female vocalist is from Finland… It starts just with the female singer on stage singing… On the second song the rest of the band appears, they started to play… Mainly they are Doom but it also touches in the Funeral Doom style. The way that she sings… Monochrome…They tried to create an atmosphere and even with the good changes of rhythms and the mix of the voices (male and female) they didn’t cheer me up. Sorry…

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The Kontinuum…

The band that originally was not in the fest… They are from Iceland and they play an energetic rock even if all the info that I saw in the net was saying progressive post-metal. Wow, what a big surprise. Very good. They started very well, they had a good sound, the songs are well structured, the voice is very good. I didn’t know anything from them, except they were from Iceland. Through all of the concert, I was moving my foot or my head. They sound really good. When I was to start to take some notes about the concert they said “Good night and thank you.” What? Already passed almost an hour? Seriously? I was so ingrained and engrossed in their music that I did not even notice the time passing. And that is good, that is wonderful, it means that I really like what I saw. In the future, if I can get a chance to see them, yes I will.

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Sinistro…

Finally, I saw them with good sound and… What a concert. I take some notes all over the concert in order not to forget anything about it and try to describe it here in words… But it’s impossible, seriously. The songs work very well at live, her voice is unique, the way she sings, the way she feels the music, Patrícia Andrade (not the original vocalist) is so expressive, she is feeling the music, her voice gives “life” to the melancholy and the weight of the songs. It’s really hard to describe the concert. And the band… They know what they are doing, they know how to do good songs and their presence on stage was really good… Almost at the end of the concert, one of the guitar players had a few problems and no guitar… He changed guitars a few times and finally he is back, on the end of the song… If you don’t know them, just listen, if you think that you are hearing on the record is the same as live? Yes, it is, but… Only if they have good live sound. I only saw/hear that on the third time… Finally… Congratulations for the concert…

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Antimatter…
[No photo possible] Antimatter is a dark rock band from the UK… I discovered that it had Duncan Patterson (former bassist/songwriter of Anathema). Ok… It’s good… Completely unknown to me but the songs sound good. The songs are catchy, at least the 3 songs I heard. But sadly I didn’t had the chance to see all because I was starving… Sorry mates.

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Shining…

Didn’t start very well and some problems with Niklas Kvarforth’s micro, giving some feedback when he was near the stage floor speakers. So his known “bad temper” appeared… I know the feeling of getting feedback on stage with my old bands and it’s not good. I understand his attitude but there are better ways to react… The band did their job… They did play good Black Metal, good songs, even if we couldn’t hear very well the rhythm guitar. Everything starts to calm a bit and I tried to concentrate on the music. The sound was a little messy and distorted. Unfortunately, it was not possible to perceive very well… Till… Once more Niklas Kvarforth strikes again and starts to talk directly to some of the persons on the audience and after a few changes of words he sad “No hablo Español”. Really? We are not Spanish, we are Portuguese. I bet if someone says to him that he was Finnish (example) he will not like it. The same here mate. The show goes on and music starts again. Time for some presentations, Ghul from (The True) Mayhem doing the leads was there. And 1 more song and a half… And I quit… The sound was not ok, I couldn’t understand why and sadly I couldn’t understand correctly what they were playing. I came to the street. Surprise to me… At the end of the song, everyone was leaving the room!!!! The band decided to end the concert because the band said they didn’t like the audience. I don’t know if it was true. I was on the street. Last words… Maybe another time, and I hope that I can see them with a better sound.

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Sólstafir…

I remember when they started… Doing some Viking Black Metal… I know they changed the music style, but I didn’t know too many to talk about, so that will be a surprise for me for sure, I thought. And it was. Very very very good. Amazing show. They gave a very good concert. Almost 1h30m of a show. I didn’t care about my notes (sorry) because I was paralyzed, looking at them and everything they did – the way they react to the music, the way they play, feeling the songs. Really good and the sound was good. Hurray. The atmosphere that they create with the rhythms of the songs, the way that Aðalbjörn Tryggvason sings, the tone of the voice, the bass lines that I heard, the keys, the simple but effective drum, the solos… Very good. Even if I didn’t understand anything when he was singing (he sings in Icelandic) the way he pronounces the words, the sound of the language fits very well. Like I said in the Sinistro review, it’s hard to explain and describe the Sólstafir concert because it is very intense and unique…

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Final words… It was a good fest. Good surprises, good bands, and some not so good. The mix of the fest, mostly doom, but some rock bands and one Black Metal band it gives a good aspect to the fest. Sadly, in my opinion, the sound of all fest could be and should be better. Till next year if I still curious and want to check unknown bands and see/listen some that I know by name or old releases. The Key Keeper (with apologies for the photo quality)

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