Prime Is Coming

support CABAL + Siamese + Odd Palace + Aphyxion + Daze Of June + I'll Be Damned + Ingen Regler + møl
author AP date 10/02/18 venue Bremen, Copenhagen, DEN

In its second year running, Prime Is Coming is an annual touring mini-festival comprising bands managed by and/or signed to Prime Collective, which visits the major cities and towns in Denmark both to promote the artists involved and to raise money for the Børnecancerfonden charity. With all proceeds donated to a charitable cause, it represents a good opportunity to earn some karma points all the while knocking back pints and checking out some of the hottest punk, rock and metalcore talent that Denmark has to offer. The concept is simple: you are bombarded with eight short, high-energy shows in quick succession and then boom, finis — no frills. For a craft beer enthusiast such as the undersigned, the Bremen theatre in central Copenhagen, with its impressive selection of tasty brews on tap, is fine choice of venue for hosting the proceedings — even if it means that the ‘bigger’ artists on the bill must play in a classic seated theatre.

All photos courtesy of Kevin Zak Andersen


Denmark is yet to present a viable candidate to claim its own stake in the burgeoning post-black metal movement but in møl (whose name translates to moth), we may have just that. Enveloped in plumes of smoke, flickers of strobe and lit up only from behind, the Århusian quintet’s performance looks like a movie by J.J. Abrams, which is the perfect backdrop for their cinematic songs — all taken from their forthcoming album, “Jord”, as far as I can tell. It was for a good reason that we earmarked it as one of our most anticipated records of 2018, such was the quality of the lead single, “Penumbra”, which features as the second song in this set. It and the other four tracks that møl airs tonight sound extremely powerful live, and with vocalist Kim Song offering every ounce of himself for the sake of an intense show, it is compelling to draw the comparison to Deafheaven as møl’s go-to source of inspiration. That is by no means a bad thing, however, as there isn’t a lot separating them from their idols based on their efforts here; the songs sound magnificent, striking that golden balance between uplifting post-rock, shoegaze and black metal to generate music that truly is transcendental, and the showmanship lacks nothing. Møl have their sights set on an international breakthrough and it will be exciting to witness the reaction of the disciples of this peaking scene when the moth properly takes flight next month.


Ingen Regler

As soon as the houselights come on in the main theatre, Ingen Regler launches into its concert on the smaller foyer stage. The Copenhagen-based five-piece has nothing in common with møl; they play straightforward pop-punk with the caveat that their vocalist, Günes Kocak, sings in his native tongue. In a genre so reliant on lyrics, this inevitably limits the band’s potential in terms of catering to audiences beyond Danish borders but with a little more work, the likes of “Magnet”, which brings to mind Blink-182 circa their self-titled 2003 album, could soon be playing on domestic radio. It is hard to ignore the fact that Ingen Regler still come across as quite amateurish though, having nailed neither the decisive song nor the showmanship needed in order to start attracting attention. This they try to obscure with a quirky take on Danish pop’s laughing stock Nik & Jay’s smash hit “En dag tilbage" near the end of their set, but even if that does elicit both smiles and singing along from the crowd, ultimately no one here seems to be particularly impressed by this forgettable showing.


I’ll Be Damned

Next in the main theatre is a band which has earned plenty of recognition already, having played at the 2016 edition of Copenhell and served as the opening act at one of Metallica’s four concerts in Denmark last year. The band’s music is far from original, but while their blues-riddled style of hard rock is likely to leave the more discerning listeners wanting, few other artists in Denmark can boast with being such fantastic showmen. Vocalist Stig Gamborg, a teacher of religion in high school (I am told), transforms into an absolute fiend on stage, sparing no energy in ensuring that the five songs afforded I’ll Be Damned are delivered expressively, and with personality and swagger. Halfway through the concert, he forays over the frontmost bench rows to sing and dance with an audience now on its feet, while on stage, lead guitarist Kristian Sloth, with his impressive mullet, rips through an assortment of attitudinal solos. This is rock’n’roll in its truest meaning, and witnessing it here for the first time, all of the hype that the domestic media has been heaping on this band suddenly starts to make sense, despite the fact that I, too, was less than impressed with their self-titled album of 2015.


Daze Of June

Denmark has never been a player worth noting in the metalcore scene, but with Daze of June (who wisely changed their moniker from Archives of Alaska earlier this month) about to stake their claim with the imminent “Heart of Silver” LP, our country may soon appear on the map. One aspect of the quartet’s music in particular gives rise to optimism: their penchant for infectious vocal melodies, as witnessed in the likes of “June” and “The Current”, the latter of which features an excellent cameo from Siamese-frontman, owner of Prime Collective and the instigator of this event, Mirza Radonjica. In a way, the profuse usage of harmonised singing and melodies played in minor key quite resemble Wovenwar — the project comprising the members of As I Lay Dying sans disgraced vocalist Tim Lambesis — and the fact that Daze of June is able to draw such a comparison is very telling of their potential. The group’s performance is not wildly energetic but it is imbued with passion, and most importantly, the four musicians absolutely nail the songs from a technical perspective — no wonder they receive such a warm welcome from the audience.



Another prospect hoping to change Denmark’s metalcore fortunes is the Ribe-based Aphyxion, and even though there were mixed feelings about their sophomore album, “Aftermath”, the group’s intense live performances, which have deservedly been compared to those of Parkway Drive, have not gone unnoticed. Aphyxion played at Denmark’s premier metal festival, Copenhell, already in 2014 and they have not looked back since, establishing a reputation as one of the most mosh-friendly bands in the country. They are a guitarist short today due to a loss in his family, so the songs sound rawer, denser and less melodic than usual — the perfect cocktail for their mosh-hungry fans, who seem unbothered by the steep ranks of chairs in the main theatre and engage in some very dangerous-looking antics upfront. As is their custom, the band cuts an imposing figure on stage and comes across as an experienced lot, but I will maintain that they are yet to have an epiphany in the songwriting department. Not one of the songs they air tonight encourages me to revisit it at home and if Aphyxion intend on becoming more than just a potent live force, this will need to be an area of focus ahead of their next full-length.


Odd Palace

Odd Palace has been raising eyebrows for quite some time, too, but with their début album yet to be released, the positive reputation they enjoy is the product of their efforts live. Many have likened the progressive rockers to The Mars Volta because of both the Latin influence on their sound and the totally unhinged style of their performance. Tonight they give even more reasons to be considered one of the finest live bands in Denmark right now, with a twitchy and unpredictable showing during which they somewhat regrettably overlook the jams and psychedelia in favour of the fast-moving, danceable tracks that also exist in their repertoire. This stuff is nonetheless artful and above all catchy, and the result is an invigorating, hyper-energetic lesson in how to put on a show, one which inspires perhaps the most impassioned reaction of the evening from the audience and not unexpectedly concludes in a frenzy of jumps, thrashing instruments and cymbals beaten with fists. Although loose promises are made of that fabled début album dropping ”very soon”, it is starting to be high time for Odd Palace to drop some studio material and capitalise on all the buzz that currently, deservedly surrounds them.



Being a local band and on friendly terms with many of our writing staff, Siamese is without a doubt one of the artists who have been afforded the most coverage by this webzine in its 15 years of existence. As such, we have been able to follow closely the trajectory of their career and watch them evolve from a very underground, post-hardcore-ish act into the glossy, r’n’b-influenced alternative rockers that they are today. The five musicians perform with the bravado of pop stars as they tear through the likes of “Tunnel Vision” and “Ablaze” after underlining just how far into the mainstream they hope to penetrate by playing a slick cover of The Weeknd’s “Party Monster”. The show is so elegantly streamlined and — by virtue of both Christian Hjort Lauritzen’s violin soliloquies and the Balkan-influenced singing of Mirza Radonjica — laced with enough unique nuances that it is a wonder that none of the big festivals in Denmark have been interested in inviting Siamese over yet. The band’s songs today are catchy and cater to punks, metallers and chart music enthusiasts alike, and considering the vigour of their showmanship, it is hard to imagine a band in this country that is more deserving of fame and fortune than these boys.



As the final artist of the evening, CABAL ensures that the proceedings are concluded on a grim note. The best way to describe the nightmarish sounds that these five musicians conjure is to liken it to the Swedish band Vildhjarta, injected with a hefty dose of deathcore and eerie ambiance in the vein of Meshuggah. Absolutely no light is allowed to shine through the dense grooves, jagged melodies and devastating breakdowns that comprise CABAL’s palette and although it is impossible to identify exactly what it is that makes the individual tracks tick, it is hard not to be awestruck by how tightly coupled everything is — the songs, the lighting and the terrifying demeanour of the musicians. Suffocating though the concert is, it does leave you with the impression that CABAL have carved out a pretty unique niche for themselves, sounding like no one else in the notoriously saturated market that Denmark offers. Having always believed CABAL to be a deathcore band through and through, I am glad to have been proven wrong here and with that, my expectations for their début album, “Mark of Rot” (which is nearing its release next Friday), have taken a giant leap upward.


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