Abbath Headlines Decibel Magazine Tour In Los Angeles, CA

March 28, 2016
Regent Theater- Los Angeles, CA

     The 2016 Decibel Magazine tour is one of the biggest metal tours of the year. This year was no different, as a stellar lineup of bands was announced for the tour. Starting off the show would be Swedish death metal band Tribulation followed by blackened thrash metal band Skeletonwitch, heavy/stoner metal band High On Fire, and headlining the show would be none other than the Norwegian black metal legend, Abbath! This would be Abbath’s long-awaited return to the US since his last tour with Norwegian black metal band Immortal in 2010. Fans were excited to finally see Abbath in all his glory either for the first time or since their last tour or possibly even longer! This is a tour to not miss for metal fans and the Los Angeles crowd at the Regent Theater lined up well over an hour before doors opened in anticipation for this crazy night.

Skeletonwitch parted ways with original singer Chance Garnette in April 2015 and have since replaced him with Adam Clemens. New music is set to be released with Clemens soon and fans are either excited to hear the new material or are unsure of how Clemens will fit the band. Only time will tell. For the second band on the tour, fans got to see Clemens in action for the first time. Skeletonwitch came out and started the show with I Am Death (Hell Has Arrived) and just like that, fans started going wild with shoving and moshing which goes along perfectly with Skeletonwitch‘s music style. Clemens seemed to be doing a fine job handling vocals. With fast guitars, it’s hard staying still for a band like Skeletonwitch. With songs like Upon Wings of Black, Burned From Bone, Beyond the Permafrost, and Serpents Unleashed, fans were going crazy and it was just barely the beginning of the show. Skeletonwitch is a band of few words in between songs so they burned through their setlist and let the music do the talking. They even played two new songs Well of Despair and Black Waters to give fans a taste of what’s coming soon. Beneath the Dead Leaves was the last song played before the band said their goodbyes and left. Clemens came out strong with his performance and fans should be pleased with the new material coming out soon.

abbathsc-62High On Fire is a metal band from Oakland, California. They came out on stage and started the show with The Black Plot from their newest album, Luminiferous. Their style of music is classified as heavy metal, but listen closely and you can hear the diversity of their music ranging from thrash metal to progressive metal and even stoner metal. Frontman Matt Pike would play on the guitar as well sing which included clean singing and harsh vocals. With the speed of their music, fans could be seen moshing throughout their set. High On Fire‘s music is interesting at times because their songs range in length. One song could be a typical four-minute song, then the next song could be roughly eight minutes. They kept the crowd entertained with songs like Rumors of War, Speedwolf, Fertile Green, and The Falconist. Pike had to make a small mention during the show that someone had stolen one of Des Kensel’s bass drums and were forced to borrow one from Skeletonwitch to complete his double bass drum kit. Such a low thing for people to do. Aside from people moshing, there was also part of the crowd that didn’t seem to thrilled about the band performing. They were possibly not familiar with the band and were unsure how to feel about them. High On Fire finished the show with Snakes for the Divine and left the stage preparing fans for the headlining act of the night.

Abbath (real name Olve Eikemo) is a legendary icon in the metal world and is known for his work with Immortal as well as his comedic personality. After leaving Immortal, Abbath formed his own solo band and on January 22nd, released their crushing debut album simply titled Abbath. Fans were ecstatic about seeing Abbath and lots of them could be seen wearing Immortal shirts. The lights on the stage went out and fans cheered and yelled out Abbath’s name. Abbath and his bandmates came out and started the show with To War!, the first track from the new album. Abbath sings with his traditional black metal vocals that are legendary in the black metal scene. Blue lights covered the stage and fog machines would let out fog to give the band and stage a more eerie tone. The second song played was the second song from the new album titled Winter Bane. During this song, Abbath had a little accident as he came out to the front of the stage to get closer to fans, but ended up slipping and falling into the photographer’s pit and landed on two of the photographers in it. One of those photographers he landed on was me, your writer (I’m not even mad tho. Greatest. Concert. Moment. Ever.). A roadie helped Abbath back up to the stage with the rest of the band still playing the song and Abbath joined in just in time. After the song, Abbath asked the crowd, “Do you want to see me fall again?” the crowd cheered and Abbath replied with, “No, you don’t!”. Being that Abbath couldn’t just play songs from his new album, he mixed it up a bit by playing some Immortal covers. The first cover played was Nebular Ravens Winter and it was appreciated by old school Immortal fans. Abbath looked like he was having a lot of fun on stage as he made his usual funny faces and poses he’s known for. For the fourth song, as a treat, Abbath played a song from his Norwegian black metal supergroup I titled Warriors. Now back to the new album, Abbath continued the show with Ashes of the Damned and Fenrir Hunts. Abbath also kept up the Immortal covers by playing two fan-favorites, Tyrants and One By One. Fans went nuts for these two songs and moshed their hearts away as well as sing along. A few more songs went into play before Abbath played another popular Immortal track In My Kingdom Cold as fans once again moshed to their heart’s content. The show was sadly coming to an end and Abbath chose All Shall Fall from Immortal‘s final album of the same name to close the show. Abbath and his band threw picks and drumsticks into the audience, said their goodbyes, and left the stage leaving behind an army of fans that were happy to see one of metal’s best-known frontmen.

Review by: Misael Ruiz 



High On Fire