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Sunday, June 10, 2012

Inquisition Live in Auckland, New Zealand 6/6/12

I’d only discovered Inquisition late last year and just as I was taking a shine to their music a New Zealand show was announced by Internecion Productions and Chaos NZ. So as only happens once in a blue moon I was genuinely excited about this show. I’d read a lot about how much better live they were and to quote a cliche’ “they delivered”. Let start at the beginning of the evening...

Winter Deluge were on first. I’ve seen these guys play a few times over the last 12 months. each time they improve and this was the best and clearest performance yet. I could really hear what’s going on with the guitars and feel the riffs this time. Something that will benefit them in the future as it is also my one criticism of their past performances and their recent "As The Earth Fades Into Obscurity" CD (review currently being written).
Winter Deluge
Anno Domini Mortus - Second time I’ve seen them live and this time was much better. They seemed much more focused and the support slot set length seemed to suit them. As a friend of mine said to me “They’re awesome as long as the don’t play too long”. Commendation for note was their front man’s amazing presence with his manic pulsating gesticulations and expressions of torment. Good Black Metal! I look forward to tracking down their CDs so I can listen more closely to their music.

Vassafor - This was the first show I had seen with Ollie on Guitar. My initial thoughts were “What fuck is that dero doing on stage? I didn’t know he was in Vassafor” ...apparently he’s been playing second gat for a while and to my surprise he complimented the Vassafor live sound perfectly. Great show as usual with all bone constructed stage props. I prefer Vassafor in their own show where they make the venue theirs, but this one wasn’t far short of that. Highlight of the set for me was the closer “Makutu”, a 2 x bass, no guitar composition that benefited hugely though the massive sound system pumping out massive amounts of sub bass frequencies from realms beyond.

The Vassafor setlist
Vassafor action shot
Finally it was time for the headliners! The Inquisition stage set up is an interesting one. It consists of two Marshall amps, one on each side of the drum kit, no sign of any microphones on speakers, but twin DIs instead. I always thought that using DIs on guitars was a no no. But unless there is something I don’t know about or some form of new technology, it sounded fucking awesome! You could hear every note Dagon played and it was powerful as all fuckery!!!
I understand that some of the band’s merch and gear including their Guitar was lost in transit on the way to NZ, fortunately local replacement BC Rich flying V was provided (Donated by Warren Davies from Forsaken Age) and despite this shortcoming it had no negative impact on the performance at all. The inquisition live performance has been well honed through endless touring. It is enhanced with a Rock n’ Roll stage presence involving Dagon moving to opposite side of stage when not behind the microphone and busting out some mean shapes. 
I spent the first half of the set up front watching inspirational displays of multilayered guitar playing being channeled through a single 6 stringed instrument whilst being pummeled by the drumming of Incubus. The latter filling the sound out to the point where you forget that most metal bands have a bass player in them. Eventually I moved a bit further back where I could hear the legendary “Lord Frog” vocals more clearly. There was a genuine feeling of Passion and honesty from the stage which created the feeling that you were witnessing something special - “I don’t like to talk much between songs because it affects the flow of the ritual but thanks for all coming out to see us”. The reference to the Inquisition live show being a “Ritual” is something they aren’t making up. If you looked around the venue you could see the largely mixed audience, including punters of asian, indian, nz, male and female ethnicity all hypnotically swaying and nodding their heads to the Melodies and Rhythms that are much much more prominent and powerful live than on the band’s recordings. When there was a gap between songs long enough, a particularly loud applause was produced from the audience. “Thank you everyone we hope to maybe come back sometime... no DEFINITELY come back!!!” Come again soon!
Inquisition - Channelling demons from Beyond

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