Blood Incantation – Anthology Lounge: November 5, 2022

Blood Incantation, Denver-based death metal monster attack force, attempt to turn the basement bunker of the Anthology Lounge into the Large Hadron Collider of music. Along with their advance assault squads for this night, Abysm and UTR.

Outside on the mean streets of K Road, it is pathetic limp-dick of an excuse for a Guy Fawkes celebration. Compared to the incendiary cauldron of sonic firestorms that engulf the underground cavern.

The audience is weighted towards male, big beards, long hair if possible and tats. Similar for the few females but without the facial hair. Wild bushmen in here too. Sweat and testosterone. Goth and scary Halloween make-up. They are a genial and welcoming bunch though, and generous with sharing their knowledge of this cult genre.

More than a dozen different types of Death, and they all differ in their opinions. Death’n’Roll is one of my favourite titles.

Venom and Slayer could be considered as originators, in the Eighties. Motorhead would also be there as a seminal influence. Where death metal has gone to now would make Lemmy and crew look like folkie fairies.

These Blood Incantation Brothers of the Death fans in the room tonight are; Paul Reidl guitar, Morris Kolontyrsky guitar, Jeff Barrett bass and Isaac Faulk drums.


Abysm are a four-piece band from Tauranga, and there is no consensus reached that they play Technical Death Metal.

They start with elemental noise. It comes in unrelenting waves of sonic torture as metal grinds metal and human screams accompany.

An impressive, meshed-guitars sound. You briefly envision MC5, before that thought is consigned to oblivion.

Two vocalists play as a tag team. Undifferentiated wall of sound from which many things can arise briefly before being annihilated. Can strip flesh from bones.

It is like watching tornadoes on YouTube, or on the ground if you are far enough away. Majestic fury. If you ever got caught in one, it would scream and howl like this.

Silences between songs are just unnatural breaks in the flow.

When it slows down, a tune breaks out. Some words are heard. But not for long as the band come back in harder than ever. Chants and war cries, tribal music for the Anti-Hippies.


UTR I have no information on. I presume they are Aucklanders; they could be from somewhere else in the universe. Someone told me their name stands for Utilise the Remains. Makes sense.

They make beast noises, guttural voices coming out of caves. Their sound is even more monolithic. Til death do fucking part! Is heard momentarily from the stage.

The supersonic drumbeats, able to be played by sexmachines (humans), and not a programmed computer is truly awesome. Matched to guitars and bass playing at the same speed. The musical and technical mastery required is what makes this a passionate obsession for aficionados’.

There is a long silence break as the group experiences a wardrobe malfunction. For these bands, their stack of Marshall amps are their clothes.

They roar back in with extreme throat-shredding, sounding like Desert Metal. They may have materialised from the Desert Road.

Blood Incantation

All this heavy artillery and bombardment set the stage for this band, who are different.

A portentous opening with Inner Paths (To Outer Space). Crisp drums and twanging surf guitars begin. There is a melody, and they indulge in some free jazz. Then the drums go off as they switch to warp speed.

Vitrification of Blood (Part One) is off their celebrated debut album Starspawn. The guitars are not de-tuned to play walls of rhythm, and fire off melody lines. After ten minutes of layering, it builds into a majestic musical spaceship to ride on. There are slow passages to follow.

We have been softened up by a cathartic hiding from the first two bands to receive this benediction.

Conventional riffs emerge. Slower metal going down to familiar Seventies rock riffs. The drums taking the foot off the accelerator heralds the melodic moments. They sound theatrical, as higher scratch tones lead into surf licks.

Awakening From the Death of Existence to the Multi-Dimensional Nature of Our Reality (Mirror of the Soul) and Hovering Lifeless.

There is a yell to resume hostilities, but the rapid drone patterns get broken by melodic fragments. As the music slows, it appears by alchemy to take recognisable shape. Old Black Sabbath guitar lines appear. Somehow, discrete guitar notes sound acoustic! How was that managed?

Death metal practitioners are doing what be-bop jazz musicians did in the early Forties. Excluding their peers by playing fast and revolutionary. Shaking off the riffraff. Awakening their passionate cult followers.

Blood Incantation, along with support troops Abysm and UTR did just that. The Large Hadron Collider produced. This is skronk to another level, and to be honest it would shake off many. I appreciate its deep qualities and it is possibly the interesting drug you may want to indulge in.

Rev Orange Peel   

Click on any image to view a photo gallery by Leonie Moreland:

Blood Incantation:

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