On Friday night, Mayhem, Inquisition, and Black Anvil commanded the Gothic Theater in Colorado with their wickedly powerful and merciless performances. What was experienced over the course of the show was something that is viscerally haunting, but also perfectly wolfish at the same time. By the end of the night, you witnessed a killer show, but you also witnessed a ritual to remember. Check out their individually unique and masterful performances below.

Black Anvil

Black Anvil are completely alluring with their gutsy compositions and insane riffs. Immersed amongst a sea of infinite fog, Black Anvil arose triumphant. These black metal giants hailing from New York City had travelled across the country to introduce their art that is rooted in both comtemopary and traditional influence. But what really shone through in their performance was their aggressive and unapologetic presence. Black Anvil symbolically gave any naysayers the finger as they slayed a performance that was full of both anarchy and composure. Mind-blowing guitar solos filled their set, raising devil horns from all corners of the room. Their performance was only enhanced by the addition of their acclaimed release, ‘As Was’, which is a monster that suddenly comes to life when you hear it live. All in all, their aggressiveness blasted the Gothic Theater that night, and no one could dispute the fact that they delivered something that was both dynamically profound and down-right heavy.

 Inquisition

As soon as Inquisition took the stage, the crowd went into a bloodlust stupor, thrashing their arms about with no mind of direction or obstacle. Those obstacles being someone’s head or body. Possessed by the music, people took the the pit and banged their heads with relentless fervor. On stage, Inquisition, a two-piece, brought the intensity of a five member band with plummeting guitar riffs and drum beats that were constantly breaking into the atmosphere. Though their performance was undeniably powerful, it was also well composed. You could tell that they wanted to create an experience that could be felt rather than just witnessed. Between the chugging guitar and the ravenous drum beats, Inquisition laid waste to the Gothic Theater, and provided a performance that was undeniably legendary.

Mayhem

Mayhem take the setting they are in and fill it with their ambiance, providing a show that can be felt by all senses. Suddenly you are taken out of the Gothic Theater and placed into a eerie yet enchanting climate. Pillows of fog and incense smoke rose amongst a dimly lit stage, illuminated by candles that gently flickered upon a table. Their light softly illuminated the skull and votives surrounding them. Mayhem weren’t setting the stage for a show, they were setting the stage for a ritual. The crowd was already antsy for them to come out and perform their 1994 release, De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas, which they would play in full over the course of the night. But the true praise came when Mayhem glided out onto the stage in black hooded robes; Their faces ominously hidden. Attila Csihar’s hands danced in the dark as he viciously growled into the night. In front of him, fans with painted faces reached towards the stage with their heads feverishly banging along to the ferocious hum of the guitar and crashing beat of the drum. A hood dropped to reveal Necrobutcher. Behind him, Attila Csihar raised his hands above him and draped them over his head. On all ends of the stage, Mayhem stood triumphantly in front of a sea of devil horns and thrashing fans. By the end of the night, nothing was left standing. As another ritual came to a victorious close, Mayhem headed off to begin another one. 

Have you been out to a Mayhem show recently? Share your experiences with us in the comments.