Whilst entering The Unicorn on a Saturday evening, a great feeling took over me. The feeling you get when you are in a friendly place, where people get together and become one; all in the name of awesome music. On that particular evening, 26th January 2013, Isengard Promotions put on a show of extreme which featured four spectacular acts: Scutum Crux, Aeternum, Ancient Ascendant and Abgott. While all were quite different, black metal roots were something which united them.
The first act to go on stage was Scutum Crux. A bold move on their behalf to decide to still play the show as their bassist was not present. The duo – guitarist/vocalist and drummer – gave out their 100% and I must say it was very enjoyable. While playing black metal they had a very thrashy edge to their music with a lot of rhythm and tempo changes which made the headbanging experience even more satisfying. Looking forward to the new release and seeing them again with the full line-up.
Aeternum put on a much darker and brutal show – as it was expected since they are tagged blackened death metal, however without abonding the clear necro black metal influences, which also showed in the vocalist's appearance: covered in (fake, I hope) blood. The vocals ranged from high pitched to deep low growls. An interesting band, worth checking out on stage!
The third act was Ancient Ascendant and they were my favourites of the night (along with Scutum Crux) – I even bought their newest release 'Into the Dark'. Because you know, you can't go to a gig and not buy some merchandise, right?! Although the headbanging music they played to us could be clearly labeled as thrash, they had a black sound to it. At times their music resembled that of Sodom which is always a great thing. Great catchy riffs, all band members performed really well and got the crowd into some serious headbanging. This is a band to look out for.
Shortly after, time was nigh for the headliner, Abgott, who presented to us their interpretation of black metal. The result was a quite atmospheric one with intros and black metal tremolo picking. Nevertheless, their music was very melodic and pleasant to listen to. They are definitely not one of those melodic black metal bands who bore you to death after the first 5 minutes. No. Their music had the atmosphere, the melody and the dark passion which we all damned metalheads look for. And the cover of Iron Maiden's 'Wasted Years' was a great surprise!
Overall, this was a great event which proved that the underground is still alive and booming. The Unicorn was packed and all bands gave out their best. Cheers should go to Isengard Promotions for organising this. Make sure to check out their future gigs here – the next one being De Profundis at The Black Heart in Camden.