The Interbeing

support VOLA
author TL date 15/05/15 venue Stengade, Copenhagen, DEN

Five years ago, Danish metallers The Interbeing emerged in strong fashion with the debut album "Edge Of The Obscure", which drew comparison to respectable Swedish metal names like Meshuggah and Soilwork and got the band noticed quite quickly. The group is one to take its time to get things right, yet now they are finally gearing up to come back with a sophomore in form of the upcoming "Among The Amorphous". The show tonight is thus one way to start making some noise around themselves, and its appeal is only made stronger by the support from VOLA, who are playing their first show in three years, showing themselves for the first time since the release of their recent debut full-length "Inmazes", a record which has garnered amazing critical reception so far.

Thanks to Sascha Winther for helping us with the photos

VOLA

VOLA have had the air of promise surrounding them already on their first two EPs, which gave early displays of their heavy, yet progressive and keyboard-aided sound. With the increased magnitude of a first album though, the group figures to start drawing much more attention, as is also evident tonight, as Stengade is pretty full already as the lights dim for their show. It starts off a bit awkwardly though, with white noise and a crawlingly slow, sampled snare pulse engulfing the room for several minutes before the band comes on stage. Suffice to say they're going to want to shorten that to not seem super pretentious moving forward.

You sense some possible anxiety as the group comes on and fiddles with their gear a bit before kicking off, but as soon as they do start, they start well and quickly improve to a very good level. The guitar and bass deliver djenty passages that sound as heavy as earthquakes or avalanches while particularly Martin Werner on the keys provide dreamy melodies in great contrast with the band's harder side. Guitarist Asger Mygind sings with a round yet clear voice that is unusual for the band's kind of music, both giving some limited demonstrations of a scream, and also sliding gently into the falsetto bits that are partially the reason the band can accurately be described as sort of a "heavy Mew".

The group delivers a mix of songs from both the new album and their 2011 EP "Monsters". "Black Box" and "I Am Not Here" both find places among new highlights like "Starburn", "Gutter Moon" and "Your Mind Is A Helpless Dreamer". The whole set has the majority of the crowd grooving and headbanging along to the steady pace-keeping of Felix Ewert on the drums, but the latter song, in particular, gets some increased activity started down front, where one superfan otherwise stood apart in rocking out like a fanatic for the first handful of tracks. It is primarily the band's music that does the work, as they are neither very talkative nor active on stage apart from some synchronized head bopping.

The songs do sound pretty great though, as the instruments are clear and LOUD, really immersing the audience in the band's unique soundscape. Mygind's vocals though, do give out on the final track "Inmazes", possibly due to the dense smoke in the room, and Nicolai Mogensen's backing vocals are near inaudible for the duration of the set. Fix these small issues though, and replace the unnecessary length on the intro with some renewed stage routine and VOLA will truly be a force to be reckoned with, live as well as on record.

The Interbeing

After the changeover, the first thing you notice as The Interbeing commence their headline set, is that these guys are not only more used to being on stage, they visibly enjoy it and have put working time into preparing for the task at hand. They're here primarily to test new material on their audience, so frontman Dara Toibin steps up, smiles wide, engages the audience and makes sure to introduce each new song, which helps give the crowd a sense of the set's pace while listening to the new material.

Generally, an Interbeing show in connection with VOLA makes sense, as they are also known for their technical metal as well as for deploying electronics in their sound, yet where VOLA uses clean vocals 99% of the time, Toibin almost exclusively screams for The Interbeing. Instrumentally the band is also primarily about the heavy, groovy riffs, with the electronic backtrack serving most in the role as an eerie ambiance behind the barrage of badassery from the band's bass and two guitars.

As with VOLA, the set is absolutely headbang-friendly, and what the band doesn't do to engage you with softer melodies, they instead do with charisma on stage. They have a professional presence and an attitude that invites the audience to get metal and get active down front, resulting in more movement taking place up front, despite it seeming like the band's songs are a bit harder to tell apart than those of their support act this evening. This could, of course, be because we haven't had the chance to spend time with the new songs though. The set is also mixed up with a selection of songs from the band's debut album, such as "Shadow Drift" and "Tongue Of The Soiled", both of which are welcomed warmly by the fans.

Overall, you have to return to the words 'charisma' and 'professionalism' to as keywords for the set overall. The only knock on the performance is that it takes a few songs to get the collaboration between Toibin and guitarist Torben Pedersen right, during the songs that have cleaner choruses sung by Pedersen. The first song, in particular, sounds disastrously out of tune, but this fortunately gets remedied soon, even if the set overall is characterised the same as VOLA's, by the instrumental power being what you notice, while the finer points of the vocal work drown out slightly on occasion.

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