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Live Reviews : Myridian, Rise of Avernus, Atra Vetosus & Arbrynth @ The Tote, Melbourne 04/04/2015

By on April 9, 2015

So apparently it was Easter Weekend? Still arrived a little late, but Arbrynth had just started their first song so please don’t crucify me. Ha ha? Okay, no more Easter puns, I promise. We walked into a full house who would have been there before doors opened.


I’ve personally never seen this happen for a local show. This is a testament to the following of dedicated fans Arbrynth have. I believe Arbrynth were also playing their first show with new bass player, Shane. There wasn’t a lot of movement by the crowd. But this was one of those instances, one of those bands, where the less movement there is, the more they have achieved complete captivation of the minds of the crowd. Their entrancing melodies rippled out from the stage to hypnotise and draw them in. There was an ebb and flow to the energy that would encourage someone to start to slowly move their head in time with the music and then others around him would follow suit. To some who are new witnesses to an Arbrynth performance might have attributed the entrancing qualities to the full moon that was out that night. I can say, having seen Arbrynth at the Tote previously, it is within every performance. Beautiful start to the night.

Now I’m a believer of not categorising bands with genres which then promote ‘cul de sac’, as I call it, mentality when it comes to their music. Next band up, however, were black metal band Atra Vetosus from Tasmania. Black metal is an established genre and there are connotations that surround being labeled as such. This young band did not have a very black metal image though as their clothing didn’t appear appropriate to their music. I know that shouldn’t matter, but, for myself, I cannot take black metal seriously without the whole package. Having said this, let me now move on to discussing their music. I have seen this band perform at Feast of Metal last year and I can say they have improved much since then. Melbourne is home to quite discerning black metal fans and they managed to draw people in from the beer garden so there was interest created. They delivered with ferocious vocals and relentless assaults from the first song, entitled ‘Throne of Serpents’, to the last, ‘Tortured by the Light of a Thousand Stars’. There was great support shown regardless of the lack of crowd interaction and band image. They clearly have space to grow into something that can rival some mainland bands.

Next up came what seemed to be the main attraction. The lunar eclipse; the blood moon. People trickled outside confused as to what everyone, with heads tilted slightly towards the sky, was staring at. As word spread, as bad as I feel saying this, when Rise of Avernus started their set, there were more people outside to view this celestial spectacle than watching this seasoned band. But the Tote is a unique venue where being outside, you don’t miss out on anything inside. I thought it was appropriate, to put it lightly, for Rise of Avernus to be playing as the moon turned red. Their cohesive band image, where every member projected the same image,  demonstrated that they were all on the same page and is the height of professionalism in that these guys are serious about their music. Much respect.

I hit the proverbial wall after this. I think having Arbrynth open, I had already reached my peak and unable to maintain the energy necessary to give headliner Myridian, on their album release no less, my undivided attention. Also the hype of the blood moon, which in truth was a bit of a let down, took more out of my small energy stores. In the past year, however, I have had the chance to see Myridian perform on a number of occasions. I’ve only heard one track from their newest release ‘We, the Forlorn’, and, even though I haven’t been partial to doom metal, Myridian’s interpretation of that genre has always appealed. From previous recordings, I have actually preferred to see them perform live. As with that night, and previously, I maintain that Myridian truly come into their own when they play live. Followers and newcomers to their shows, you know what I mean. The funereal pace coupled with melody and haunting vocals weaves one of the darkest atmospheres you can experience by any band in Australia today.