VULTURE INDUSTRIES – 15.04.2023 – Bergen, Norway

VULTURE INDUSTRIES – 15.04.2023 – Bergen, Norway

VENUE: Kvarteret
DATE: 15.04.2023
ORGANIZER: Det Akademiske Kvarter

The uniquely gifted purveyors of dark and captivating avantgarde rock known as Vulture Industries never cease to amaze me regardless of whether we are talking about their recorded outputs or live performances. What this scribe is about to concisely sum up in the next few paragraphs falls into the latter category; I am of course referring to their excellent gig at Kvarteret in Bergen last night, which was essentially an anniversary concert celebrating twenty years of musical innovation and also a showcase of sorts for their upcoming album, Ghosts from the Past, which will be out in June this year.

Following an ominous and hypnotic intro, the ensemble entered the stage and embarked on a 90-minute journey filled with interesting twists and turns, and being the consummate professionals that they are, the dramatic and intensely passionate renditions of the songs were delivered with vigor and class. Front man Bjørnar Nilsen is not only a brilliant and imaginative vocalist but also a magnetic and hugely charismatic presence on stage who tugs at the heartstrings one minute only to turn fucking nuclear the next and act like a deranged inmate or an insane manager of a Victorian freak show. Those maniacal moods of his add an incredible amount of theatricality and atmosphere to the group’s live appearances, which was certainly also true of last night’s deftly executed show. Although the sound lacked a bit of definition and clarity, the outfit played with gusto and determination, and the setlist was the stuff that avantgarde metal dreams are made of. Potent and powerful versions of ‘Grim Apparitions’, ‘The Hound’, ‘I Hung My Heart on Harrow Square’, and ‘As the World Burns’ were served up among many other gems and classic cuts, but the highlights to these ears were the brand-new slices of magnificent madness from the upcoming LP, namely the catchy and hook-laden ‘Deeper’, the brooding ‘Saturn Devouring His Young’, and the seductive ‘This Hell’. It was both exciting and inspiring to see how well-received they were at Kvarteret, and fans and listeners have a lot to look forward to when the aforementioned Ghosts from the Past is released in a couple of months.  

Another stellar aspect of the gig was the implementation of saxophone, trumpet, and keyboards, which obviously added even more nuances and textures to the compositions, or layers and dimensions, if you will, and one can only hope that they will repeat that successful experiment in the future.

A most enjoyable and entertaining evening in the company of one of Norway’s finest and a fitting and memorable way to celebrate their twentieth anniversary.

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