photos by Fred Pessaro // BBG; words by Lauren Jackson
Nachtmystium @ Saint Vitus, 11/19/2012
On Monday night, Chicago's Nachtmystium exercised a sonic assault on a packed St. Vitus, which was one stop on a BV-sponsored tour. The band found support from local favorites Batillus, Mutilation Rites and Sannhet, as well as fellow Chicago metal outfit, Lord Mantis.
Sannhet started the night off at a properly late hour, complete with light show and white noise projections during their set which, incidentally, fit their extreme performance perfectly. Straddling the line between clear riffs and static, Sannhet's songs were highly structured, but drenched in a top layer of noise--much like the garbled images one can almost make out under TV snow.
Batillus carried through that same noisy sensibility, with frontman Fade Kainer's harsh vocals, manipulated to a point where they could have been confused as something inhuman and otherworldly. The band's industrial sensibility lent an edge to their doom-influence dirges and, while slower than all the other bands on the bill, made Batillus equally brutal as next band Mutilation Rites' most unforgiving riff.
Raw and fast as hell, Mutilation Rites brought down a set that seemed to make everyone at Vitus grind their teeth and brace themselves for the two remaining bands--Lord Mantis and headliners Nachtmystium. And by the time the headliners took to the stage, Vitus was packed, humid, and frenetic with the furious energy from each unbelievable performance.
To attend a show so consistently brutal and so consistently good, with band after band bringing all the energy they could to bolster up American black metal favorites, Nachtmystium, was a true treat for the metalhead's soul. And, as usual, Nachtmystium did not disappoint, and punctuated the night with an assaulting set that lasted just over an hour.
By the end of the set, the hooded black figures who had filed in at the start of it all came out sweaty, some with fogged glasses, and all with grins because everyone had gotten what they wanted: blackened brutality.
Check out more pictures and video from the show below, including video of Batillus performing a new track "Mirrors."