Kreator

Amager Bio, Copenhagen - 2012

Text: Tobias Nilsson Photo: Lunah Lauridsen

It was on the fateful Wednesday the 12th of December (12) in the year of our antichrist 2012 that the top of the Germanic thrash crop visited Denmark, supported by Morbid Angel, Nile and Fueled By Fire.

Before us hung a white curtain which had been raised after the last band, covering all of the stage as it was being made ready for the main act of the evening. Why we didn’t know, as they were just changing the backdrop and probably rearranging the drumkit, like they had with all the others.
Or were they..?
Maybe they were, as the purpose of the white curtain was soon enough revealed; Depeche Mode’s song Personal Jesus was rolling out of the speakers in a comfortable level, and at the same time as this happened, a video was projected onto the curtain (or should I say screen?), a video depicting a historical overview of Kreator’s career, including album covers and more or less rare band photos.
Towards the end, Personal Jesus morphed over into Kreator’s own intro song Mars Mantra, taken from their latest release, Phantom Antichrist, and as the screen showing had now changed over into the beginning of the title tracks video, we all knew where we were headed – the screen suddenly dropped to the floor, and behind it it revealed it’s double purpose in hiding a massive stage setup with stairs, different levels with mic’s positioned on each, and of course even the horse statues resembling the ones on the cover artwork were in place! Impressive is an understatement!

It also revealed a thrash quartet that was ready to tear it up old school, as the members of Kreator dived straight into one of the fastest and most aggressive songs in the bands recent history!
The set held this tone pretty well throughout the evening, blasting us with several new tracks from the Phantom Antichrist album (not surprisingly), mixed up by the title tracks of each and every album they’ve made after their “re-thrashilization” in the present millennium, as well as a healthy dose of the old-school thrash that made them famous to begin with.
This vital set combined with an unusually lively performance by the band, in which both Sami Yli-Sirniö and Christian ‘Speesy’ Giesler were walking around a lot to take in as much of the audience as they could while not just headbanging their necks off; Giesler proved once again that he is still the undisputed master of this in the band.
Main man Miland ‘Mille’ Petrozza was definitely also one for walking around, contrary to his usual hanging on his mic in the middle of the stage, and he was even the one in the band who made best use of the special stage setting as he moved from side to side, back and forth and even up and down, trying out all the mic’s where the music allowed for it.

Petrozza didn’t stop at walking around though (can one say that?), but he was well prepared to get people involved in the show as well.
This proved to be a good thing as the Copenhagen crowd was happy to cheer on the main band of the night between their songs, but during the songs nothing much was going and this surprised me quite a lot.
After Petrozza reminisced about the first time the Kreator visited Denmark though, at some point in 1987, he got a few more of the old school fans with him, and when the band reached Enemy Of God there was an all out war on the floor as the audience waved back and forth and round and round in a violent mix of a mosh- and a circle-pit! Later, during the bass intro for the slower Voices Of The Dead we got a nice rhythmic clapping started, which then erupted into another wild mosh as the song picked up pace.
Petrozza might have been the one who was making the most contact with the audience from the bands side, but it was Yli-Sirniö who got the most personal greeting from the audiences’ side, where a couple of guys standing in front of him raised and waved a Finnish flag in his honour (this actually almost made him blush a little, he probably isn’t used to being the one to get attention in the band).
The wildest part of the show was without a doubt when Kreator played the oldie Coma Of Souls, which saw an impressive wall of death start of the festivities which continued into a large and ferocious circle pit!
What may come as a surprise to you though, and it certainly did for me, was that the hall was getting emptied out throughout the show; to begin with there had been less people for Kreator than there had been for Morbid Angel before them, but even those who had stuck around were now giving up before the show ended. Why would one do that, especially given that Kreator was giving the best performance of the evening? That one I can’t answer, that’s for sure...

Even so, it didn’t take anything away from the men on stage, and it didn’t take anything away from the night as a whole. Kreator had a lot of things going for them, and even though this wasn’t the best concert I have ever seen with them, it was really good to finally see them up close and personal at a show once again, as the last many times have been at large festivals, which isn’t really the same thing.
The sound was also deserves a special note as it was unusually good this evening, with Petrozza’s vocals being a little bit high, without becoming annoying. I also appreciated the fact that the acoustic intro for United In Hate was played live by Yli-Sirniö instead of having it pre-recorded like some of the other intros.
All in all, a great evening where the kings of old reminded us that they are still worthy of holding the throne.

Setlist:

Mars Mantra
Phantom Antichrist
From Flood Into Fire
Enemy Of God
Phobia
Hordes Of Chaos (A Necrologue For The Elite)
Civilization Collapse
Voices Of The Dead
Extreme Aggression
People Of The Lie
Death To The World
Coma Of Souls
Endless Pain
Pleasure To Kill
The Patriarch
Violent Revolution
United In Hate
Betrayer
Flag Of Hate
Tormentor

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