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Gig review: Orpheus Omega + Supports, Sydney

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Orpheus Omega + Hadal Maw + The Seer + Daemon Pyre + Immorium
Newtown Social Club, Sydney
7 August 2015
Review by Salla Harjula

Canberra boys Immorium kick off an intense five band bill of death metal. I’ll admit to getting caught off guard a little. On a long bill like this, you often expect to tolerate the openers with a handful of their most loyal friends on the floor with you, at best. So when this melodious Swedishy heaviness floods out at a well populated Newtown Social bandroom, and I get genuinely sucked in, well, it’s a good start to a Friday night.

The opening pair of bands are a cute kindred spirit twinset. Tonight’s only locals Daemon Pyre are a stouter brand of melodic guitar and hefty drumming, but ultimately the singer’s jeans vest with Arch Enemy and At The Gates patches says it all. It’s all very massive and kinda groovy. The powerful singer spends half the gig down among the moshers and puts up a vigorous show all in all.

But speaking of massive. The Seer from Newcastle are responsible for the night’s most epic showdown. They are not the liveliest band ever on stage – in fact, I may have used the term ‘adorably serious’ at some point during the evening. The most fun they offer visually is the bassist with his headless bass who looks exactly like a Norse troll, in the best possible way (well – is there a non-cool way to look like one?)

That aside, musically they go all out on everything. Enormous symphonic synth backgrounds, with super guitar heroics and a fierce willowy drummer who spits out relentless blastbeats like it ain’t no thing. And naturally some carefully synchronised windmilling by the long-haired guitar duo. The night’s definite highlight is the absolute saga that is Eternal Cataclysm. Judging by the response, the rest of the crowd agrees with me.

Hadal Maw introduce another headless bass and another amazing drummer and more guitar heroes now with 8-string guitars because of course. But this show lacks in ooomph somehow. It’s super technical, super fast, super bleak, super murderous, super low-register, but you’re left hoping for some dynamics or groove or genuine heartfelt aggression and don’t quite ever get that.

Then again, it may just be that the general vibe in the room is growing tired. A line-up with five bands where each one gets at least 30 minutes of playtime… It exhausts even the most enthusiastic metal crowd, as was unluckily apparent with Orpheus Omega.

They did a fantastic show to celebrate their album launch, make no mistake about that. It was damn fun and entertaining as all hell.

Even the backdrop gets so excited that it tries to fall on the goofy keytarist a couple times. At one point the bassist’s curls get tangled in singer Chris Themelco’s guitar knobs. The keytarist (is this a word, people?) keeps jumping off the stage to mosh with the moshers and spins like a neon-light-adorned dervish with his kitschiest of kitschy instruments. Chris spouts amiable banter between every song and everyone plays cheerful death metal to their heart’s content.

Unfortunately the crowd has been slowly trickling away for a while now, and you can tell the entire room is simply a bit sleepy by now. Then again the loyal crowd that stays frigging loves every minute of it, and that’s the way it should be. Orpheus Omega throw an awesome party.

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