Dark Funeral

Live at the Regent Theater

Los Angeles, CA

February 22nd, 2018

Review and photos by Travis Baumann

Dark Funeral are a black metal band hailing from Stockholm, Sweden. Founded in 1993, they have been making Satanically inspired music for over twenty five years. Considered prominent purveyors of this scene world-wide, their latest release, "Where Shadows Forever Reign" is yet another volume of excellent darkness spilled upon the earth.

This was my first time getting to see them live and I was not disappointed. The atmospheric tapestry was woven thick with ambient lighting, backdrops of dark imagery taken from their latest album's artwork, and of course their outfits and makeup.

The band consists of founding member Lord Ahriman on guitar accompanied by Chaq Mol, also on guitar, Jalomaah on drums, Fredrik Isaksson on bass guitar, and the enigmatic front man, Heljarmadr leading the charge.

They started the set with "Unchain My Soul" which led directly into "The Arrival of Satan's Empire" and "Vobiscum Satanas". It is apparent from the song titles alone the subject matter of their lyrics never strays far from a singular theme.

They moved all over their discography with "As I Ascend" coming from their latest album followed immediately by "The Secrets of the Black Arts" off of their first album of the same name.

The onslaught continued with "As One We Shall Conquer", "Open the Gates", and "Hail Murder". There was no barrier between the stage and the audience so fans would crowd surf their way to the front, climb on stage, head band with the band for a moment and then dive off.

This is rather rare these days and while a few members of the audience took it too far and had to be forcibly thrown off the stage, for the most part the crowd and the band seemed to enjoy the interaction.

They concluded the main set with "My Funeral" before taking a short break off stage. The crowd chanted and screamed until they returned and they blessed their fans with "Nail Them to the Cross" for an encore starter. They followed up with "Atrum Regina" and then closed out the epic set with the title track from their latest effort, the excellent, "Where Shadows Forever Reign".

It was a really good show. The band sounded awesome, they looked super cool in their armor and makeup, and the audience was really into it making it a great experience. The entire lineup this night was amazing with Septic Flesh co-headlining and Thy Antichrist opening, but Dark Funeral was definitely the stand-out.

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