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April 7, 2008 | by  | in Music | [ssba]

Immortal – Live Review

Immortal are a bit of an anomaly in the black metal scene for a number reasons, but the biggest separating factor from their counterparts is Immortal’s injection of fun into an otherwise quite literally deadly serious genre. And fun they were last Friday as Abbath, Horgh and Apollyon unleashed a blizzard of metal goodness on a very appreciative San Fran crowd.

I was ‘getting in the zone’ (i.e. getting on the waste) for too long before the gig and ended up missing Skuldom’s opening set which was a bit of a bummer – sorry fellas. By the time I rocked up I was in the ideal state though, as Immortal opened their set bang on 10.30. From the outset Immortal were all class, each song demonstrating the band’s renowned ability to work as a unit and ending in a sea of horns from the devoted in attendance. And the riffs! Oh dear lord the riffs, how good are they? Real f’n good, that’s how good. When you’re a three-piece rock band of any description you absolutely must write good riffs, there’s just not enough going on otherwise not to. And good riffs are bread and butter for Immortal, as each guitar line brought a subtle catchiness to the frosty black metal atmosphere. The crowd nodded along enthusiastically and a pit fired up sporadically at the front. Abbath kept everyone entertained between tunes, and seemed genuinely happy to be playing in our corner of the world without resorting to ass kissing wankery. His shouts of “one by what?” encouraged solid audience participation as they dropped into ‘One by One’ from 2002’s Sons of Northern Darkness. And what a set it was, with Damned In Black being the only album under-represented if my memory serves me correctly.

The sound was good, the bar was full and Immortal tore it up; there’s not a lot more to say. The fire is sure as hell still in the belly of Abbath and co. and after 18 fun, freezing years and counting they continue to turn it on. Damn good show.

[ssba]

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