Amager Bio, Copenhagen - 2020

Text: Tobias Nilsson Photo: Lunah Lauridsen

Abbath was the main event of the late February evening, on which we had wandered into Amager Bio. He had brought some very prolific names with him on tour, but it was his time to shine. And when I say he, I of course mean both Abbath the man, and Abbath the band.

Well, the crowd had finally shown up in full number, and were ready to rock out. We were hoping Abbath was ready to deliver the goods, to let us do just that.
Since it’s been a while since we last saw the band, we were treated to an almost complete make-over in its composition. Olve Eikemo himself is a certain constant of course, but the rest of the crew seem to hang on more loosely. Thus we had Ole André Farstad still on guitar although completely taking over from Silmaeth who’s no longer with the band, and Ukri Suvilehto handled drums instead of Creature (since this has earlier been a title going from person to person, I can’t say why the name didn’t also pass on this time), and instead of King, Rusty Cornell could be seen on bass, although from what I gather, he isn’t a full-fledged member of the band.

Regardless, on they came, after Danza Ritual Del Fuego (Manuel De Falla) was played as an intro. The band itself kicked off with The Artifex from their latest album, Outstrider.
I must say, I like Farstad - he looks cool, and he performs as well as plays really well. The new guys, well, they felt a bit anonymous to me, so while their playing was on point as far as I could tell, they didn’t make much of an impact in the performance.
Then again, an Abbath show is mainly about Abbath, isn’t it? And Abbath certainly was having fun, and up to his old tricks. Only, he wasn’t as much up to his old tricks as he usually is. Maybe he was just tired, I can’t tell, but the performance from even this entertainer extraordinaire felt, well, a bit flat to be perfectly honest. To give an example - a single, short crabwalk was all we got. How on Earth is that possible? This man usually comes off as a veritable energy explosion! He was fun, sure, and cracked jokes between songs, but his physical presence wasn’t what it has been, nowhere near it.

The setlist held mostly songs from the recent album, supported by a mix of debut album material as well as the ever present Immortal covers. One can’t complain, but there wasn’t much inventiveness in choosing old hits. Also, for me, it’s always been about the performance first when it comes to Abbath, and when that was lacking, well, the rest wasn’t enough to support the gig.
It was a good experience, don’t misunderstand me, but it wasn’t on the level that we’re used to, and it wasn’t on the level of what Vltimas had delivered moments before. Let’s hope it was a bad night only, and that we’ll see good old Abbath on top again next time we meet.


Danza Ritual Del Fuego (Manuel De Falla song)
The Artifex
Count The Dead
Bridge Of Spasms
Warriors (I cover)
Ashes Of The Damned
Harvest Pyre
Against The Tide (in The Arctic World) (Immortal cover)
In My Kingdom Cold (Immortal cover)
Tyrants (Immortal cover)
Calm In Ire (Of Hurricane)
To War!


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