support Victims
author TL date 26/11/08 venue The Rock, Copenhagen, DEN

It's a spur of the moment kind of thing that I'm even at The Rock tonight to see Swedish prog-metalcore-outfit Burst play. Suffice to say that I didn't have anything better to do on this Wednesday night, so when given the opportunity to go review a show by a good band, I naturally jumped right at it. However, this means that I didn't have time to make arrangements for my photographer, meaning that for the duration of this review, you're going to have to suffer the poor quality of the pictures I myself managed to get with my phone. When in the venue, I feel that it's a Wednesday night, seeing that the turnout is rather weak for the show, with few more than 20 people having shown up to watch the support band Victims


To be brutally honest though, those who are absent from the Victims show really aren't missing much. The trio plays an uneven cocktail of punk, thrash and hardcore and the resulting sound is something that seems like a blurry tribute to Motörhead. Guitarist Jon has removed his shirt for the performance, which seems like a rather ill placed effort, considering how this small handful of people seem more than content with just taking the band's show in from a distance - Assuming "the position" if you catch my draft. The dude and his friends clearly love to play though, and if they'd have stuck to it maybe I could've let their show drift by casually, but the ridiculous nature of the comments he inserts between songs here and there, make it hard for me to not wonder about whether tonight is some kind of amateurs night. The sound is not doing them any favours either, as the volume is turned "to eleven" and the vocals emerge only as a gritty stream of nonsense. The sad truth is that Victims look like a couple of dudes who've come straight out of their mothers' basements, trying to revive the 80's thrash they treasure highly, but failing miserably to provide a performance that's any kind of interesting or impressive.



Fortunately for Burst, by the time they take the stage, significantly more people have shown up, and the crowd is now pushing 60 by a rough estimate. When Burst take the stage however, it is clear that just because there are more people, they're not to expect a much bigger response. Adding to the feeling that this is a workday and everybody's just in the mood to chill, people answer to the band's presence only with some occasional bopping of heads and clapping after a song is done. And as for the songs, Burst don't sound too convincingly on the first of them, and their sonic troubles are enough for guitarist Robert to call a timeout to the soundman. While levels are adjusted and Robert gets a microphone cable that actually works, frontman Linus entertains in a speedy Swedish I'm not too sure everyone in the crowd is picking up on, but again, the chilled out mood just means that people are willing to forgive this slight slip-up.

And it's just good for them that they do, because Burst turn the sound back on in an impressive manner. Easily sounding as good live as on record, if not better, the dynamic interplay between Robert's effect-loaded hollowbody and Jonas' distorted axe shows us just how well the band can sound when their atmospheric music is allowed to grow around the listener in the environment of a concert venue. There's not much to say about the way Burst sound, except that listening to them is a joy that hardly ever becomes boring. On the visual side, there are a couple of things left to be desired though, some for which the Wednesday evening mood is responsible and some which the band themselves have to take the blame for. Even with their sound all fixed and impressive, there are still not anyone in this crowd that seem like they came to move to Burst's music, and rather than trying to instigate some movement worthy of a rock show, Linus settles for joking around with the audience in between songs. He explains that Robert is seated for the duration of the show because he messed up in an easy part at the show the day before, and as punishment the singer had to punch him hard in the kidneys, which he's still feeling. It's a cheeky lie, but it fits the mood and we all laugh at the joke. Linus himself looks like the odd man out in the band, considering how the other guys all look remarkably much like "band types", while the singer looks like he stumbled right out of bed in his ripped jeans, washed out t-shirt and curly hair. I know I'm not supposed to review the band from a fashion point of view, but I still think that for a better crowd, Burst could significantly thicken the expression they produce by acting and appearing in a manner that's more consistent with the deeper nature of their music. As I said though, sonically Burst leave no things for me to complain about after the initial corrections, and listening to them play tonight is a delight that's well worth the quite cheap price of the ticket to the show. I just hope I'll get to see them in a more intense environment some day - Just as you should do too.


Burst setlist:

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