Pumpehuset, Copenhagen - 2017

Text: Tobias Nilsson Photo: Lunah Lauridsen

This is the story of a band that made us rush through the length of Europe like never before.
The band was Macabre, and they were playing the small stage at Pumpehuset one Sunday evening at the very end of July…

“I have one question. Does anyone have any weed? We come from Chicago, so we couldn’t really pack it for the trip.”
- Lance ‘Corporate Death’ Lencioni (vocals/guitar)

It all started at the Metaldays festival in Tolmin, Slovenia, where we accidentally missed out on a couple of their songs. You can read more about this in our previous review of the band.
Now, only days later, Macabre were hitting our very hometown on their own trek through Europe, and we certainly weren’t going to miss any of that! So, we sped through the streets and highways of Slovenia, Italy, Austria, Germany, and finally Denmark, just to make it in time for this very gig. We made it, and man are we happy we did!
As stories go, there are some obstacles to be conquered before the seeker may find what he or she (or, as in this case, he and she) seeks. The final one in this particular story was the local support band added by the venue – Red Warszawa. Now, as some of you may know, we are well familiar with the works of this particular band, and are usually, if not overly fond, then at least quite amused by what they do. Our latest encounter had been a disappointment however, and we feared that our ways had just spread too far apart. My biggest concern though, was that as Red Warszawa is an immensely popular band around these parts, the crowd would show up mainly for them, and possibly leave before the main act came on. The crowd reaction to their show only strengthened this belief.
Luckily though, Red Warszawa not only managed to deliver a quite strong show of their own, on par with their older concerts, but it also turned out that both they themselves, and the crowd, were interested in sticking around to watch Macabre as well. If I’m not mistaken, the crowd actually grew for Macabre, something I found extra pleasing, as I had no idea of how strong a support they have in this corner of the world.

The seekers finally found what they sought, and after a lengthy soundcheck, during which the crowd was already shouting that they had missed the band (their last visit had been back in 2012, and that had been at the other end of the kingdom). One guy even bought the band a round of beers, beers which were quickly handed over to Dennis ‘Dennis The Menace’ Ritchie and Charles ‘Nefarious’ Lescewicz by Corporate Death. He had his own white wine and soda thing going, and as he remarked, Nefarious could take a double. In fact, he could, and he even ordered more during the gig, but that’s a side story we don’t need to get into now.
When the soundcheck was finished, the band quite unceremoniously went straight into the first song without any warning. Dog Guts was pounded out quickly, and even though there was a slight sing along effort from the crowd during the choruses, this beginning felt a bit rushed. The band hadn’t settled in, and it was hard to say what the atmosphere would become.
Nero’s Inferno was up next, and already at this point things were looking up though. Corporate Death began telling his history lessons about the story behind the songs, the song wasn’t slow but the band looked more at ease, and the crowd shouted louder. When the third song came on, Albert Was Worse Than Any Fish in The Sea, the first moshpit broke out, and the heat was steadily rising!

As we were through the first chapters of the concert, things were picking up pace. Not rushed, like it felt in the beginning, but getting more into the meat of the thing, now with everyone being on the same page.
Corporate Death kept telling his stories, alternating between history and personal anecdotes. Before Trial, from the Dahmer album, he told the story about he himself, together with his mother (Corporate Mom?), going to Jeffrey Dahmer’s trial, and how he, Corporate Death, began writing the song right then and there, only feet away from the infamous killer.
At another time, he briefly mentioned the history of the band – how they started out back in ‘Eighty-four with Macabre, after having tried out a few other bands before this. All the time, the same three guys, never any changes (except for Dennis The Menace not taking part on the Macabre Minstrels EP Morbid Campfire Songs) and they’re still going strong. How many bands can say that? Not many, that’s for sure.

The only real change in the band there is to speak of, is the change of backing vocals I suppose. No, I’m not talking about Nefarious, as he is one of the constants. No, I rather meant the night by night changing choir of the audience. Of course, I can’t speak for many other places, but I’ll have you know that Copenhagen was really getting behind the band in this respect. One clear example was the beginning of Zodiac, where the audience members were giving their own takes on the voices heard in the crazed killer’s head, as Nefarious and Corporate Death did the same on the stage.
Another good example, although not related to a song as such, was the chanting of “Murder Metal” between. A chant that started out well enough, but spread like wildfire, and was soon loud enough to warrant Dennis The Menace to get up and film it! Actually, it seemed pleasing all the way around the band, and I’m sure the lift in the band’s intensity and presence was directly affected by the love shown from the audience.
I’m not sure if the concert was sold out or not, but I can say that the place was absolutely packed! Maybe next time, it should be considered placing the band on a larger stage? I love the intimacy of this venue, but maybe it wouldn’t be a bad thing if the crowd could get even bigger. Copenhagen also missed out on the character portrayals that we’d seen at the Metaldays gig, and I think the stage-size might have played an important role in dropping those for this show.

We have now reached the end of this page turner. The band, smiling, sweaty, and panting slightly said their good byes. They had made an ok start, moved on to an incredible lift, given an unexpected twist (playing Night Stalker when Serial Killer was written on the setlist), and made a strong finish. There had been no epilogue to the story, even though two possible encore songs were written down.
The crowd wasn’t ready to give up on them yet though, and kept on applauding and chanting “Murder Metal” long after the band left the stage – the longest run I ever remember hearing actually, and after some 7 to 10 minutes, as Dennis The Menace returned to dismantle his gear, people were still pressing up against the stage, shouting for the band to play more.
They didn’t, but it put a big ol’ smile on the drummer’s face, who once again pulled out his camera to document the dedicated fans. Later, the whole band would emerge from the backstage room, to hang out and talk to people.

Epilogue (this review will have one, even though the concert didn’t):
Looking back now, I can safely say that even though the Metaldays concert had been enjoyable enough, the Copenhagen concert was well worth the rushed return. This one is a show that will go down in the annals of memory, one of those that will be referred to in the future when judging other shows. All I hope is that the sequel will not be another five years in the making.


Dog Guts
Nero’s Inferno
Albert Fish Was Worse Than Any Fish In The Sea
Dr. Holmes (He Stripped Their Bones)
Ed Gein
Mary Bell
Night Stalker
The Cat Came Back
The Iceman
The Bloody Benders
You’re Dying To Be With Me
Scrub A Dub Dub
Vampire Of Düsseldorf

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