Oathbreaker @ the Roxy (3/28)

There’s no use for preamble here; the Roxy is the Roxy, as I’ve said before.

Oathbreaker is a band from Ghent, Belgium that started off as a hardcore act with their 2011 album Mælstrøm before moving into atmospheric black metal territory in the vein of Deafheaven for their third full length, Rheia.

The opener, Khemmis, was a doomy//stoner rock band that, having not done any research beforehand, I was pleasantly surprised by.

I only caught maybe the last 2 songs of their set but they were still pretty damn good if I say so.

Oathbreaker took the dark stage and performed most of their new album, the aforementioned Rheia, with the exception of some of the slower, more instrumental tracks.

The band ripped through their set with only a single hitch: when their guitarist’s cable shorted out.

So that was the only setback and it resulted in them not playing one of their songs, but otherwise the set was filled with rich, atmospheric tones that could put you at ease just as easily as they could put you on edge.

The vocals are a mix of black metal brutality and ethereal longing that, again, can soothe you one minute and have you wanting to headbang like crazy the next.

Compared to previous releases, Rheia is riding the wave of atmospheric black metal as made popular with Deafheaven’s Sunbather in 2013 and, while it’s not exactly as resonant with me as the aforementioned Sunbather, it is still a fantastic album that is deserving of all the praise it has received.

In summation, Oathbreaker, out of Flanders, Belgium, will come to your city and wreak havoc and when that happens, you won’t want to miss it.

 

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