The weather was still bad Saturday at Eistnaflug, but no rain could dampen the spirits of metalheads hungry for some carnage. Spirits were high even if hoods had to be up.
I started my day by heading over to the main venue to see hardcore band Icarus. Though the crowd started a little bit groggy, Icarus’s energy immediately woke everyone up. Frontman Finnbogi Örn Einarsson is a true gem, a natural performer. Flailing his limbs, violently throwing himself onto the floor, no one could tear their eyes away from the erratic performance. At one point, Finnbogi even started hitting himself in the face with the microphone so hard that he started bleeding. The audience responded in kind with a small mosh pit—definitely impressive for a show with a start time of 15:15. By far, it was the most intense performance I’ve seen in a while, and I’m a black metal fan. Hardcore is not usually my cup of tea, but if any band could convert me, it would be Icarus. Check them out.
Coming off the high of Icarus, I next watched Lvcifyre—something that was musically more my taste. But after having seen Icarus’s explosive high-energy performance, I found Lvcifyre’s whole set boring. Wearing worn-out leather pants, the whole band just stood there and headbanged—they didn’t move at all. Looking around, I saw people checking their phones and chatting to each other, which is never a good sign. I spent the whole performance thinking that I probably would have had a better time listening to their CD alone at home. Music is important, but there’s also a reason that concert-goers go to shows and it’s to be entertained. Lvcifyre failed to impress.
But my spirits were raised when I caught Muck later in the day. Having just read our cover feature on them from a few issues back, I had high hopes and boy, the band did not disappoint. They are incredible. I left the venue writing a note to myself to buy their CD and send it to some of my friends in the states who like hardcore. They are a really unique group and they deserve many more cover stories.
Don’t worry though—Saturday wasn’t all hardcore. Abominor and Mannveira brought some darkness to off-venue with a short black metal show. Mannveira was my highlight of the day on Thursday, and I liked them even more yesterday. They have a slower and darker style of black metal, much less aggressive than other Icelandic acts such as Misþyrming. The howls of the lead singer are haunting. I hope to see them again very soon.
Behemoth was everything that could be expected. I’ve been playing their new album The Satanist for the past year and seeing it live was a dream. With crowd surfers and a pit, it was the climax of an amazing festival. They are not an easy band to sing along to, but many concert goers tried with varying levels of success.
But highlight of the day was without a doubt Vampire. I’d never heard their music before, but they had a lively performance that made me instantly want to download their album. I don’t even know what genre to label them in, but it was kind of groovy death metal. Their frontman had great energy and the audience ate it up. They even had one of those super-fans running around the crowd singing along at the top of his lungs. But I couldn’t keep my eyes off of their guitarist—the blonde one—because he was really cute. Yeah, that’s always a plus.
More from the GV’s Eistnaflug coverage: