CONCERT REVIEW: Triptykon/1349

This concert review will be shorter than the others. Despite the fact that there were four bands playing at the Middle East downstairs venue Thursday night, I only got to see the last two. Even though I really only meant to go for those two anyway, I would have liked to have checked out the others as well. Did I mention I hate driving in Boston? Anyway, apologies to Black Empire and Yakuza, I still don’t know what you sound like yet.

I’ve seen 1349 before at Mark’s in Bedford a few years ago. They seem much more animated this time. Ravn still paced back and fourth between songs, as a predator stalking its prey. The band’s performance was awesome. I went in expecting them to blast everybody away, and was not disappointed. One point to bring up, though, was the bassist’s cloak. The cloak itself was fine, it added to the band’s look; however, as he head banged he looked like a Muppet. The long beard didn’t help with that, either. Overall, though, I give this horns up… hell, I would have even if I hadn’t gotten there in time to see them.

Triptykon started with a slowed-down version of “Procreation Of The Wicked.” I have read some complaining about the speed on this one. It does seem to lose a little of something, but not much. The song does sound as if it were written to be played faster; however the way it was played announced what was to come: dark, almost evil power that would fill the “souls” of those attending. I have made it no secret in the past that the Celtic Frost come-back album “Monothiest” is one of my all-time favorite metal albums, and one of my favorite songs from that album, was included in the set near the end. The focus is around half Celtic Frost, half Triptykon songs, and it was an amazing set. Tom G. Warrior seemed to pull the emotion deep from within to deliver the vocals with an amazing display of controlled power. The rest of the band invested their bodies into the performance without feeling the need to jump around or to get the crowd going; they played the songs for the songs themselves. It was as if the band were saying, “Come on in to our dark world” as opposed to a touring band coming to the venue. I nearly went into a trance at times, while feeling the dark energy flowing from the amps into me.

Fearing that I’m going into the realm of melodrama, let me just say that Triptykon has quickly become one of my favorite live bands. I give them horns as high as my arms will reach.

Then it took me what seemed like forever to find the Tobin Bridge. I hate driving in Boston.


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