Surprise from the support, excellent performance from COB
Copenhagen, Pumpehuset: Children Of Bodom is on their 20 years anniversary tour, “20 Years Down & Dirty Tour”, bringing with them ONI (CA) and Forever Still (DK). This evening showed surprising performance from the support.
First support on stage, the sextet ONI from Canada plays progressive metal. Somewhat like the main act, they have synths in their tracks, but these are xylophone synths. That’s a first for me. But they made it work so goddamn well, that it would’ve sounded weird if they were NOT in the mix. Singer Jake Oni’s well balanced mix of growls and clean lines are performed with ease and a deliberate punch in the face, while bassist Chase Bryant radiated energy with the energy of a nuclear blast on that stage, while reminding me of Tim Commerford (bassist, Rage Against The Machine).
ONI’s impressive technical skills, all played on headless instruments by the way, did nothing to put a damper on their energy and connectivity. With lots of material from their debut album Ironshore, this was a high speed metal train impossible to stop. ONI has a much more raw sound than any other prog metal band I’ve seen, and the xylosynth didn’t ruin that either. Heavy riffs, Brandon White’s beautiful and extremely fast guitar play, combined with the growls from Jake, ONI was more badass than even the main act, and every part of their show was a burst of extremely well played and tight metal.
It was a little sad to see only 60-100 people having made their way to Pumpehuset’s great hall, and Jake’s continous attempts to get people to make a mosh-pit or jump failed every time. This didn’t scare them off though, and the band was unaffected by the slow audience.
In my opinion, the best band this evening.
Second support slot, the local Danish quintet was all over the stage, which can sometimes be too much, but not in this case. Singer Maja Shining covered both agressiveness and heart-felt quiet passages, and the whole band showed plenty of energy to go around. This time there was a mosh-pit – and combined with the awesome lighting and the view of Maja behind her KoRn-like silver microphone stand, this was an impressive show. Since they started playing together in 2013, Forever Still has seen a rapid rise in the metal scene, and their anthem-like songs were both raw, hard-hitting and with a very wide soundscape. You might think, “Another Evanescence band…” Well, no. These guys are above that. This is what every metal band fronted by a woman should take notes from, they set the bar high for the rest of them.
To sum up, Forever Still had the luxury of more audience than ONI, and it was a somewhat different genre than both ONI and the main act, but it was a band that knew their songs, and performed like a well-oiled machinery.
Children Of Bodom
The roar from the audience, “Bodom! Bodom! Bodom!” as Children Of Bodom entered the stage was nothing less than ear-shattering. The 2/3 filled venue had people of all ages, a sign of the impact that this innovative band from Finland have had, an still have on the metal community. Starting with the “Deadnight Warrior” from 97/98’s “Something Wild” album, the band plowed through nostalgic tracks like In “The Shadows”, “Needled 24/7” and “Downfall”, and rounding off with “The Nail” and “Dead End”. As a last encore, we got the Beastie Boys’ “Fight For Your Right (To Party)”, also played with excellence!
The main act is known for introducing keyboards into metal, so naturally they should nail that part. Janne Wirman showed a top-notch surplus with his keys, while looking like he had just come in from the street to play. He certainly seemed to enjoy himself up there. What impressed me the most tonight was the crushing and heavy riffs that defines COB, played to perfection.
Children Of Bodom is a band I’ve been listening to since 2004 or so, at least since 2003’s “Hate Crew Deathroll” album which contains the excellent “Needled 24/7” and “Angels Don’t Kill” tracks. I’ve never seen them live before, so I had my expectations set high, and even though Children Of Bodom has a unique sound, it still felt somewhat flat compared with the support acts. Maybe it was because ONI was so surprisingly good… I’ve never been the biggest fan of keyboards in metal – which can sound absolutely incredible, but that’s just me. Throughout the set though, COB gave one hell of a show, including material never played in Denmark before – “Black Widow” – to great delight of the fired-up audience. Alexi Laiho’s raw voice and other-worldly guitar play induced crowd surfing and jumping like I’ve not seen in a long time, and the fans certainly got what they came for. It was messy at times, but a well controlled mess.
In The Shadows
Angels Don’t Kill
Red Light In My Eyes
Every Time I Die
Hate The Deathroll
Bed Of Razors
Children Of Decadence
Towards Dead End
Fight For Your Right (To Party)
To sum up the evening, it was one of those nights where (in my opinion at least) the support blew away the main act. ONI had like 60-100 people there (venue capacity is 1000), but they had so much energy in every second of their show. Forever Still obviously ramped up the adrenaline in the audience, mainly due to the fact that they were local, and had more people in the room. Children Of Bodom were absolutely no slouch either. Best band tonight in my opinion: ONI.
All footage copyright Jakob Muxoll. All words expresses the personal opinions of the writer.