Saturday 23rd of April marked the 5th annual blast heavy metal concert in Egypt. It was a long night or rocking, head banging, and just general awesome music. The lineup in these years concert consisted of the usual local bands, this time being Odious and Medic, and featured some huge surprise names, prime of which being Swallow the Sun, then Dimlight, and Inner Missing.
Medic were tasked with the job of opening up the show, and they were a decent opening. The strong bass and drums, as well as the energy of the lead singer, helped set the atmosphere of what would be an epic night. However, it’s quite easy to see why they weren’t one of the more “main event” bands. Despite the lead singer full of charisma, he, Ehab Khaled Fawzi, sang very rarely, their set mostly consisted of instrumentals. That’s not to say that the instrumentals were bad by any means, but they lacked the rough, and rugged voice to lead the charge and get everyone moving. It’s safe to say, no moshpits were started during their set.
Onto the second set, by the Russian gothic metal band, Inner Missing. Inner Missing’s set was quite interesting, they were definitely a huge change from Medic, in terms of content, and really, just had a different style than most of the bands that performed in the concert. First of all, they had a very unique vocal technique, and that was the lead singer would sing as if he were in an opera. Now, this didn’t necessarily pump up the crowd to full blown head banging, but it did raise a few eyebrows, and surely they did pique the interest of many at the concert. Certainly, they were a sign of better things to come.
Odious, the third band, where the spark to the fuel that ignited the entire show. They completely encapsulated what everyone was looking for, from heavy guitars and drumming, to downright brutal vocals. Their performance hyped up the crowd, started moshpits, and just improved the overall atmosphere in regards to the audience. They were a real crowd pleaser, and an excellent band to watch live that blended traditional Arab music with metal.
Next, we have Dimlight, hailing all the way from Greece, our fellow Mediterranean’s sure did put up one heck of a performance. Again, they were quite unique in their vocal technique, they consisted of two vocalists, one female, Eva, doing the clean vocals, and one male, Invoker, doing the harsh/growling vocals. This dichotomy of vocalists made them quite an entertaining band to witness, for not only did vocal changes occur often, they occurred well. To have two vocalists be in sync with one another is hard enough, but when the two have majorly different roles, and one of them is also the guitarist, it makes it quite a tough task to handle, and they stood up to it. Aside from that, their stage presence was very dominant and prevalent, Invoker ruled the stage, and the crowd, with an iron fist, and commanded the entire show. It was quite sad to see them end their set, but they got a huge ovation, with the entire crowd cheering them on as they finished up.
Finally, the main event/band, Swallow the Sun. To put it into perspective, Swallow the Sun are a death/doom metal band that hail from Finland. Now if you are not aware of the rich history of death metal within Scandinavian countries, let’s give you a quick introduction to how good and big the metal scene is there. Scandinavian countries have the highest metal bands per capita than anywhere in the world, and the famous bands there are hailed as some of the best bands in metal history, Gorgroth, Cardinal Sun, and Burzum just to name a few. Now, Swallow the Sun is a band in this scene at its prime, they recently came first in the Finish top 40 charts and are set to continue their tour all over the world. It’s safe to say that people came probably to only see this band. And they were not disappointed. Everything was done to perfection, from their soft soothing vocals, to their heavy brutal growls, Swallow the Sun showed why they are one of the best metal bands around with that performance.
Overall, the show was a huge success that left many fans happy, and with aching necks. If this level of performances continues, these concerts will no doubt attract bigger and better bands, and might even increase the prevalence of metal music in Egypt.
By: Youssef Hassan