Amon Amarth

Copenhell - 2016

Text: Tobias Nilsson Photo: Lunah Lauridsen

A new day dawned, and with it came the obligatory famous name to open the Helvíti stage. This day, the Swedes were taking over Copenhell, and so it was that the job of waking people from their hang-overs from the day before fell upon none other than the mighty Amon Amarth!

“Tak skal I ha’! Copenhell, hvordan går det?!”
- Johan Hegg (vocals)

Admittedly, many had already chosen to roll out of their sleeping bags, or wherever they had parked their corpus the night before, and now stood silent guard before the Helvíti stage. The job of waking everyone up wasn’t so hard after all. Oh, and silent is not quite an accurate description, I fear. In fact, the Danes were shouting enthusiastically for the Swedish Vikings to enter the stage.
Which they of course did, soon enough. In fact, no sooner had they landed, than they pulled out their heavy artillery, and bombarded us with The Pursuit Of Vikings, yet another fitting opening song at this festival (several bands really knew how to choose them this year). I will not lie, I got goose bumps as I shouted along to the chorus.
Stepping back for a minute though, I think it is well worth describing the setup (as if you couldn’t see it in the photos). It wasn’t new, but that setup with the twin dragons, the stonewall, and the rune stones on either side is pretty damn impressive! And the fact that the band can actually climb the dragons, and get a better view of everything doesn’t make it any worse either. Sure, it was only Hegg, Olavi Mikkonen, and Ted Lundström who made use of this day, but it still looked awesome, and it provided some added variety to the look of the show, which is always welcome.

“Copenhell, it’s fucking warm today! I already said that, and it’s pretty obvious, so fuck that shit.”
- Hegg (vocals)

This was Amon Amarth’s second visit to Copenhell, on the same stage, and on the same spot no less!
Their last visit had been a bit underwhelming however, but this time it was clear from the get-go that it wasn’t going to be the case this time around. Already when entering, the band was ready to tear this festival a new one, and they only grew in power as the show went on.
When playing, the whole band was lively and enthusiastic, and in between songs, Hegg rambled on in a jolly mood, switching between English and some heavily accented, but still correct, Danish (as seen above). Since last time, Fredrik Andersson has left the band, and in lack of a new, permanent solution, Amon Amarth now travels with Joakim ‘Jocke’ Wallgren (Valkyrja). He stayed a bit anonymous through the show, but joined in on the bow at the end, and threw some sticks out as well. Musically, he did everything he was supposed to, as far as I could tell.
Wallgren wasn’t the only live musician to guest the Amon Amarth stage this day though. No, when it was time for Guardians Of Asgaard, another well-known face joined the band as well – L. G. Petrov! It wasn’t a completely random encounter, as Entombed A.D. played later the same day, but Petrov have been at the same place as Amon Amarth in the past, without coming by, so I wasn’t sure what to expect before he walked on. When he did, the audience erupted in shouts however, and the performance was pure bliss. With this new player to act upon, Hegg became even more alive in his performance as well.

We were now reaching the end of the show, and to send us off with a bang, Amon Amarth had saved Twilight Of The Thunder God for the last. To really hammer their position in, Hegg brought out his mighty Thor’s hammer, lifted the heavy thing above his head, and let it smash down hard into the stage. If it was a mistake or not, I cannot say, but there were no sparks flying this day, and to really kill the illusion, Hegg then lightly lifted the thing in one hand, and threw it to a stage hand, who fumbled a bit before carrying it off stage.
Apart from that little blunder, the show was fan’effing’tastic! The entire band was more active than I have seen them in a long time, the setlist was great, and the setting was superb.
I know we haven’t done all that much Amon Amarth lately. We had a big stint a few years back, but managed to become saturated with their music, and needed a little break. This show, this afternoon, it was like coming home again. It was beautiful, and although they had some stiff competition, Amon Amarth was the best show of the day.


The Pursuit Of Vikings
As Loke Falls
First Kill
Cry Of The Black Birds
At Dawn’s First Light
Death In Fire
Deceiver Of The Gods
Father Of The Wolf
Destroyer Of The Universe
Runes To My Memory
War Of The Gods
Raise Your Horns
Guardians Of Asgaard (feat. L. G. Petrov)
Twilight Of The Thunder God

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