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Live Report : First Fragment @ Haarlem, Netherlands by

Updated: Jun 18, 2020

Via (translated) : "The metalheads in the west of the country are rammed this Sunday! In the afternoon, Gebr. The Nobel in Leiden are enjoyed by Venenum, Ascension and Necros Christos.

After dark death metal, the Patronaat in Haarlem will take over in the evening, with a promising tech-death production. Obscura, a good acquaintance of Patronaat, tours here for the recent record “Diluvium” and has brought a number of emerging tech death talents, where every lover of well-considered virtuoso shred violence can lick his fingers.

The Canadian masters of First Fragment make their first debut in the Netherlands. That has taken a while since I heard their EP in 2010. With the mouth almost open, the audience is watching this virtuoso playing band that performs songs with head and tail. Everyone is completely captivated from the first notes of the powerful album opener 'Le Serment de Tsion'en' Gula 'of full length debut' Desin 'from 2016, the new song' Soif Brulante ', to the last notes of the EP closing' Paradoxal Subjugation '. It is striking that the drummer throws his full overweight into battle, with super fast alternating drumming, while also waving his hair, as if it were no effort at all.

The guitarists play very concentrated and alternate with a lot of impossible guitar work. String player Phil Tougas, the Chuck Schuldiner of modern tech death in terms of innovation, also adds his deep backing grunts to the lead vocals from time to time. That singer is clearly the easiest of the band. Where music is the accompaniment of the vocals for mainstream musicians, it is the vocals that lead the songs in easy ways. He has a comparatively less dominant role. It is ironic that the sound people, who in my opinion can make this musical violence sound a lot clearer and sharper, even drop the vocals from time to time.

In terms of sound technique I find something to criticize at this concert, but not at all on the musically offered! Even when the further song-oriented set is interspersed with an instrumental intermezzo, every spectator remains fascinated and tested to be able to comprehend all this and finally to lift the proverbial jaws off the floor again. Another great tech death act from Canada, finally in the Netherlands. Please come back!

Allegaeon has been busy busy for some time nowthen on. A rising star in the land of modern tech death, this American band was recently announced for the prestigious Fortarock festival, making the leap from the club scene. Fortunately, we can still experience them indoors. The first thing to notice is that the band has a great appearance! The more extensive light show also helps, but it is especially the sympathetic singer who always involves the audience, making it an enthusiastic party. Musically they opt for much less solo spots, but rather for grooving death metal riffs and rhythms, with some virtuoso excesses. Partly due to the atmospheric backing tape, this is easily digestible for the Sunday evening audience. That is therefore easily en masse.

This band has just released an album to be released (“Apoptosis”) and we get a preview of 'Stellar Tidal Disruption'. From the last album we hear set opener 'All hail science' and 'Gray Matter Mechanics - Apassionata ex Machinea' and conclude with the oldie 'Behold (God I am)' The lyrics are just as thoughtful as the music. Even though the sound is great, the audience still does not understand this, but that is for the record buyers to dive into. For now, the audience is screaming, screaming, fistpumping and headbanging happily. In short, this band delivers, on all fronts, a quality performance, which I will definitely visit again at Fortarock!

The progressive technical death metal combo FallujahI have been following since their Dutch debut performance in Baroeg in 2013 and I think it is no longer unknown in the tech death scene. They have delivered brilliant, atmospheric yet mega brutal death metal records, each time further refined, and this year the new 'Undying Light' will be released. And yes 'traditionally' there is another new singer in screaming service. What also strikes me is that much less use is made of the dreamy atmospheric guitar sound. Melodic leads still sound about the brutal violence, but that sound is often turned back, in favor of the brutal work. That also seems to go back a little more towards deathcore with a lot of blast beats. It will probably be from the new record and connect more with more popular music, but I think that they are squandering their unique signature with this.

Fortunately, they also play the super atmospheric 'Sapphire' and 'The Void Alone', with which the performance nevertheless goes in the atmospheric direction. The light show is again of great class here with a lot of strobe and many moving lamps. Amber Gaze closes the professional performance. I've always thought this was a great band, but I'm a bit afraid of that upcoming record. Nevertheless, this was a very good and atmospheric brutal concert.

Then it's time for Obscura , one of the leading acts in the European tech death scene, which has sounded better than ever since the second re-establishment. Band principal Stefan Kummerer is looking forward to it and leads the performance, although I don't think he is really a showman. His presentation is relaxed, but clearly studied because predictable. Musically they play the tarrels from your anal hair! I have been following this band since 2009 and where Stefan then seemed to have trouble with his own work, with some sloppy solos, he now plays everything phenomenally flawlessly.

Nice entrants too, including the title tracks of the current “Diluvium” and the penultimate record “Akroasis”. Because this fresh line up also recorded these two records, it is obvious that the songs mainly come from here. Even though this is all based on the later Death style, these records sound so fresh that everyone is drawn into the easily digestible, actually catchy, virtuosity of these mid-tempo works. The bold and contrasting bright light show, with air fountains, also make this a very intense show. Yet they dare to break off the intense vibe. They do this with, for example, a solo spot for the bassist in the middle of the set, an intro in between, where band members briefly leave the stage. In addition, a number of songs have a melodic instrumental intro, which always lead to spectacular spectacular riff work about their galloping death metal rhythms. Crazy college ragwerk!

The audience visibly enjoys and always reacts exuberantly! The old 'Incarnated' of breakthrough record “Cosmogenesis” is also shown, thanks to the Dutch bassist Jeroen-Paul Thesseling. The first ending will be 'An Epilogue to Infinity'. With the encore 'The Anti-cosmic Overload' they conclude this amazingly successful evening! Obscura is doing good business here with an extensive show and I hope that they can still tour a lot, and that they will again take on cool emerging talent. Thanks again, Patronaat!"

Originally written by Maurice Egbers for - translated using google

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