Monday, November 23, 2009

Satanic mass@Klubi, Tampere

Cavus, Behexen and Mayhem played a gig at Klubi yesterday. It's disturbing how much I liked it. I mean, satanic metal is for the schizos and adolescents who think it's cool to be bad, right?

First, Behexen lit up some candles and started an intense ritual of witchcraft, enchanting the audience under their spell, creating a serene atmosphere to get intoxicated and ponder fundamental questions like Why do I want to live instead of killing myself? or Why doesn't this show just stop in everyone bursting to laugh at it, and are the same tricks used to delude us every day?

Something in the evening created a whole which immersed like nothing before. Maybe it was black metal's fast, monotonic drumwork and its novelty. The dedicated audience. The witchcraft theme taken first to its logical conclusion and then over the top.

Mayhem is a good showcase of what happens when spirituality starts to wag the dog. The band had five members in the beginning of the 90s. One committed suicide, another was murdered by a third band member who went to jail, the fourth one resigned and only the fifth one was left to reinvent the band with new musicians and more professional attitude.

The old band's antics were so batshit crazy that they cross the parody horizon, and then some. Here's Panu's feeble failure to parodize metal:
Zombie Metalissa sun pitää niiku osata olla zombi jo eläessäsi. Zombi on niiku pystyynkuallu ihminen joka kulkee hei sillai niiku ropotti-rops eikä oo niiku missään kontaktissa niiku todellisuuteen. ... Zombiuteen kuuluu vittu että sun pitää olla vittu lähellä kualemaa, niin lähellä ku vaan voit.

One of Mayhem's dead band members was called Dead:
He (Dead) didn't see himself as human; he saw himself as a creature from another world. He said he had many visions that his blood has frozen in his veins, that he was dead. That is the reason he took that name. He knew he would die.

Wow, he could see into the future!

Before the shows, Dead used to bury his clothes into the ground so that they could start to rot and get that "grave" scent. He was a "corpse" on a stage. Once he even asked us to bury him in the ground - he wanted his skin to become pale. During one tour with Mayhem he found a dead crow, which he collected and stored in a plastic bag. He often carried it around with him and would smell the bird before performing, in order to sing "with the stench of death in his nostrils."

Now you may say "But yoga-style new age spirituality is different, because it aims to heal people!" The harmful beliefs of new age spirituality, like homeopaths opposing H1N1 vaccinations, are masked under the veil of healing. Should this mask make large audiences to buy their lies, the lies may cause more damage than the openly repulsive satanists.

Mainstream music is by definition something that you hear from many channels. This familiarity breeds boredom and contempt in me. Nowadays all the good and original stuff is made by bands on the fringe that I've barely heard about. By the way, this good fringe is not just metal, here's a sample of twee by When I Was 12.(Hat tip to 1000 Sparks.)

Hopelessly Romantic Harmonies from Kate Kell on Vimeo.

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