BEYOND THE GATES “Bjørgvin Black Mass 2017” – Day I – Bergen, Norway

BEYOND THE GATES “Bjørgvin Black Mass 2017” – Day I – Bergen, Norway


Beyond the Gates is back, and it is bigger than ever! The best festival in Norway if you like underground and occult music was moved from Garage to USF Verftet, and with that, it grew into something very different.

Whoredom Rife was the festival’s first band, and to put it in rather simple terms: They killed it! The music of Whoredom Rife is extremely fast paced, and the audience responded nicely by headbanging as if their lives depended on it. The band had a great presence on stage, and they connected well with the people watching. The bad sides (that will show up quite often through the whole review) was that the sound was rather mediocre, and that the light show was 100% garbage. Took away quite a chunk of the whole experience, to be honest.


Cult of Fire-1024.jpg
Cult Of Fire at Beyond the Gates Festival 2017
Photo by Stig Pallesen/STIPA Photography

 Next out was the occult and atmospheric band, Cult of Fire. This band was the best band through the whole festival to capitalize on the dark atmosphere that BtG always has sought to bring out to the masses. The mesmerizing tunes of this atmospheric band filled Verftet nicely, and the stage seemed to rumble with energy. Again, the sound and lights did no favours, but the band pushed through in a rather nice way. Cult of Fire was just absolutely present in the form they had meant to take, and this made the experience great.

After Cult of Fire, Dark Sonority took the stage, and to be honest, it didn’t really work. It was obvious that they were going for the same sort of atmosphere as Cult of Fire, but the music and stage presence just didn’t seem like it was tight enough. The band came off as a bit boring, and the atmosphere just wasn’t there as much as the band probably wanted it to be. Dark Sonority definetly had potential to be one of the greater bands of the festival, but it was a high risk/high reward play, and it did not pay off. On the bright side though: They had a decent light show.

Mgła was up next, and as a band playing, these guys probably did the best job of the evening. The new wave of black metal is a bit interesting, as they have moved from corpsepaint to hoods that cover the face, and they more or less only have that. The music is fairly black metal’ish, with a bit more modern spin on the genre. Mgła is a good representative of the whole new black metal genre, and they proved themselves worthy of their pioneer position. As the band probably had the best sound through the whole festival, the music was also able to shine nicely, and the audience seemed to really love the show.


Masters Hammer-1397.jpg
Master’s Hammer at Beyond the Gates Festival 2017
Photo by Stig Pallesen/STIPA Photography

Last of the first night, Masters Hammer, a rather old school band. The concert itself was fine. The music is fun enough, especially if you like that sort of old extreme metal, but they would probably have been a better match with one of the other days. The stage show was fine, but the whole "naked lady with a goat head" thing i a little bit cheesy. Now, cheesy is not synonymous with bad, but it is what it is. In the end they had an ok show that will not go down in history as anything special. It was fine, but the audience had already had more interesting highlights of
the day.