Copenhell - 2014

Text: Tobias Nilsson Photo: Lunah Lauridsen

On Friday the 13th, we were hurrying towards the Helvíti stage where Behemoth was opening up the final day of Copenhell with their blasphemous tunes and infernal show.

Since it was less than half a year ago since Behemoth’s last visit to Copenhagen, the big question was – was this really relevant? Had the band had time to renew their show after so short a time, and would people gather for more after the equally short time?
Well, a good deal of people had gathered in front of the main stage so apparently Copenhagen was ready for more, more of the same or something new didn’t seem to be an issue here.
And more of the same it was.
Basically, and not so surprisingly really, Behemoth was still travelling with the same show as they had the last time they came by, more or less the same setlist (taken into account that it of course was shorter here than at their own show), same stage tricks with the burning crosses, the burning incense and the burning pyro show, and all in all pretty much the same movements and performance.
Well, since the last show had delivered in a good way, this wasn’t so bad was it?

Well, there were some key elements that came into play here, elements beyond the reach of both band and festival to do much about.
The first, and most obvious, was of course that this show was delivered in broad daylight. While Behemoth can carry such a thing, there are surely others that carry it better, whereas Behemoth simply works better in the obscurity of darkness. The atmosphere doesn’t really take hold in the same way in the revealing light of day.
The other was also weather related – during Behemoth’s concert the wind was really kicking it up a notch, and this resulted in a bad audio quality for the band as the wind whipped the sound around something terrible before reaching even the first rows of the audience. It also killed much of the stage production – the backdrop which changes mid-set was only lifted halfway up so we didn’t get the entire artwork, and the burning crosses blew out in a matter of seconds. Also the pyro-blasts throughout the gig and the black confetti at the end were blown to kingdom come, pun intended.
The only part of the stage production that wasn’t affected by the storm was the mask and chicken-leg costume addition during the finale, but here again the sun killed some of the mystique.

All things considered, people received Behemoth quite well as the band delivered a well proven formula, but the feeling of repetition was always nagging at the back of the mind, and the weather obstacles did what they could to kill the atmosphere of the show, so this will not go down as a show remembered through the ages.

Setlist (incomplete):

Blow Your Trumpets Gabriel
Ora Pro Nobis Lucifer
Conquer All
Christians To The Lions
O Father O Satan O Sun!

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