Last year I was really surprised by the performance of Deafheaven as a support of Russian Circles. After the release of Deafheaven’s second record, Sunbather, I definitely had to see them again. Fortunately they organized a headlining tour through Europe this fall with two shows in Holland. I went to the 013 in my hometown Tilburg to see if they could translate their songs in a good way from an album to the stage. During this sold out gig I first had to ‘experience’ opening act Aderlating.
With a mixture of black metal, drone, noise and some improvisation the 2 guys from Aderlating terrorized the audience. Some really loved the dark and haunting noise these guys produced, others couldn’t deal with it. I find myself more in the latter category. It was just too ambient for me and especially the drums were really sloppy. Maybe this was on purpose, but I couldn’t tell and definitely couldn’t enjoy it. The visuals of for example satanic rituals on the backdrop were a welcome addition. For those who didn’t like the music there was still something interesting to look at and in any case it helped to create the eerie and miserable atmosphere.
Deafheaven impressed in the studio with their songs from especially Sunbather and now they’ve proved to us their songs sound equally great live on stage. Except for the track ‘Windows’ they played their whole new record live and there was never a dull moment. There wasn’t much interaction with the crowd, but that didn’t matter. From the first couple of notes onwards most people were in trance by the shoegaze and post-rock influenced black metal. The band itself is strange to watch with its very different personalities, but the music keeps you longing for more. The diversity, the multiple climaxes, even with the reverb and the use of a loop-pedal in between the songs they keep it interesting. After a great live introduction to the Sunbather material they left Tilburg with an encore from their debut record Roads To Judah, ‘Unrequited’. Hopefully they can handle the pressure of their hyped album and sound, because I would love to hear more from them in the future!
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