It’s been two years since the UK has seen the Polish black metal juggernaut that is Behemoth. It’s also been a long two years for the band, but finally they have found their way through it and back to the top of the pile with a well earned Friday headline slot at Bloodstock Open Air 2012.
The minute the band takes the stage it’s as if hell has opened and here come the minions. I have never been so scared in my entire life, as the band opens in the heaviest fashion I have ever seen from any band ever (with perhaps the exception of Gojira.)
Behemoth definitely know how to make an impression, and they do just that. Whilst not being overly familiar with Behemoth and their material it was still a sight to behold when the band opened with ‘Ov Fire and the Void’ from most recent album “Evangelion” before bulldozing everyone with a thunderous rendition of ‘Demigod,’ including some pretty insane flames.
Over the course of the set the band looked focused and playing the set of their lives. You would never ever know that this is a band that has had time away from the stage, as tonight they absolutely kicked the living shit out of the place. Frontman Nergal, in particular, playing like a man possessed, as if the time he has spent away has made him that much more eager to get out and play live again and there are moments during tonight’s set where the crowd very loudly welcomed both him and Behemoth back to the stage. It’s a moment that he both acknowledges and feels somewhat overwhelmed by, as he thanks the crowd and says it’s an honour to be here with us.
The only low point of the set is when the band decides to roll out ‘Lucifer’ which is a slow drawn out mostly instrumental track that threatens to kill the pace of the show, but luckily it’s well placed enough that the set doesn’t suffer too much from its inclusion.
Behemoth returned to Bloodstock and were greeted with a hero’s welcome, and quite rightly so. They well and truly tore the place apart and proved that they are a true genre defining, and in many ways, defying act that is worthy of headlining festivals around the world. It’s now with baited that we wait for a proper return tour with a new studio album behind the band, but on tonight’s evidence the best of Behemoth is still yet to come.
Photos taken by Sabrina Ramdoyal