Copenhell - 2013

Text: Tobias Nilsson Photo: Lunah Lauridsen

I have seen the Swedish gentlemen of death known as Grave a few times in the past, but they have never completely appealed to me. Maybe with the great mood I was in after Sabaton, this would finally be the day that the grave would open up to me?

“We are Grave from Sweden and we’re here to rock your fucking socks off!”
- Ola Lindgren (vocals/guitar)

As if a sign from above that this was simply going to be too wicked to bear, the heavens suddenly opened up and we received a downpour the likes of which had not been seen in all the festival as we stood ready before the Pandæmonium stage, getting ready to receive the death blow from Grave.
Vocalist Lindgren seemed to be in a sour mood over the treatment his band got from whatever deity that was on call this day, and he wasn’t above pouting about it either as he commented; “Before we had a crappy band [ed. note – Sabaton] with good weather, and now we have shitty weather for a good band!”
Still, I suppose you can’t blame the man for being a bit down about it, after all the rain was coming down incredibly hard at this point, and with the addition of the hard wind, the rain flew almost horizontally straight into the stage room. Although, if it was me, I would probably sooner have laughed about it and just been damned happy that the equipment still worked...

And the equipment did hold up to the onslaught of water, of that there was no doubt! In fact, Grave managed to mangle out such a deep rumbling low-end death sound that even the thunder-clouds seemed to be too afraid to take up the challenge.
Possibly aided by the slippery wetness on the necks of the guitars and bass, the members of the band dealt out lightning fast riffing which shattered the flood on its way to the audience, and on the other side of the fence there was an impressive amount of people standing ready for the beating. The front was of course, as it always is, undeterred by the circumstances at hand and threw cascades of water around as they headbanged wildly, but the mass of people behind them were busy pulling out their rain ponchos or leather coats to make a ruckus. People enjoyed the old-school Stockholm death metal for sure, but they were doing it in quite a laid back kind of way, with the occasional cheer or shout to stir up the atmosphere.

Honestly though, given my history with the band, and the conditions this show was in, I couldn’t bear to see it through to the end. I remember hearing Morbid Way To Die, but that’s as far as my recognition of the songs went, and given the foul mood of the frontman, which was probably equal parts due to the weather and his normal stage persona, he wasn’t about to let anyone unaccustomed to the band in on what they were doing.
Looking at some of the faces as I left, I admit that the fans of the band didn’t seem to mind the wet conditions and enjoyed the band at full blast, but I simply couldn’t find anything worth hanging around for...

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