Winterfylleth, Fen, The King Is Blind and Terra @ Colchester Arts Centre (UK) – 14th May 2016

Winterfylleth were simply a great end to a great night and they proved why they're one of the best black metal bands in the country.

Happy Birthday Metal Recusants! Yes, our beloved website is five years old. We’ve done so much in such a short time, but yet there is still so much more to do. There are more albums to review, bands to interview and gigs to cover. However, now is not the time to reflect, it is time to party with some of the country’s best underground metal bands.

Winterfylleth Fen Colchester May 2016 poster web

Up first was Cambridge’s Terra, an atmospheric black metal three piece who were just simply excellent. They performed ‘II’ from their untitled debut and new song ‘Nadir’ from their upcoming new album. They set the atmospheric tone for the evening and delivered a memorable set with the stunning stained glass backdrop providing a stark reminder as to how far black metal has come. For the short thirty minutes they had to grace the stage, they had the undivided attention of everyone in the venue. Even though not everyone was aware of the band, many walked away as fans.

Terra (9 of 10) small MR anniversary

Picture by Duncan Sweeney.


Two months ago The King is Blind performed one of their best shows to date supporting Sylosis and Decapitated at the Arts Centre. It was clear that many people there were back for more judging by the mass of people that were wearing shirts of the band. Performing tracks from their latest album Our FatherThe King is Blind were once again just excellent. One of the band’s obvious strengths is their relationship with the audience. Frontman Steve Tovey really connected with the crowd, demanding the audience get involved with the festivities. This was the third time I had seen The King is Blind live this year and honestly I can’t see myself getting sick of them. They are such a great band, so well in sync and well-rehearsed with a great on-stage relationship.

What else is important is that audiences love them, every show I’ve been to has seen head banging, chanting, fist-pumping and jumping up and down to the band’s tunes. Winterfylleth vocalist Christopher Naughton joined them on stage for set closer ‘…For All The Daemons Are Here’, to add some demonic screams to the finale.

Steve Tovey told us in an interview this month that it was “a personal ambition to play to a full Arts Centre as a headliner, with the backdrop down and the full stained glass lit up behind us. And film it. Whether that one will be realized ever, only time will tell as it’s a bit ahead of where we are, in all honesty.” At this point though I can see them doing it in a few years down the line with a few more classic albums under their belt. Make sure to catch them at Download and Bloodstock, you won’t regret it.

Set List:
Genesis Refracted
Fragility Becomes Wrath
Bloodlet Ascension
…For All The Daemons Are Here

The King is Blind (1 of 15) small MR 5th anniversary

Picture by Duncan Sweeney.

In complete contrast to The King is Blind, Fen embodied the spirit of metal and were simply magical. Recalling early Alcest at parts, Fen’s set was just sublime and as the only band on the night I had not seen before, were beautiful. Fen were one of those bands that knew how to create an atmosphere, it was powerful, grandiose and at points it overwhelmed the senses. Fen performed how black metal should be performed, with an undeniable sense of darkness in air while showcasing undeniable talent. A mixture of beauty and primordial savagery. It was my first time seeing Fen but it won’t be the last.

Fen Set List:
Exile’s Journey
Of Wilderness and Ruin
The Gales Scream of Loss

Fen (2 of 14) MR 5 anniversary

Picture by Duncan Sweeney.

Now it was time for the headline act, a band that is considered as one of the best black metal bands in the country, the mighty Winterfylleth. It was their third time playing at the Arts Centre and judging by the responses from the crowd it wouldn’t be their last. The audience loved it and were clearly fully warmed up by the previous bands as within the first few notes a mosh pit had ignited. I couldn’t take my eyes off Winterfylleth, I was drawn in by the ferocious guitar sound which created an unmistakable air; aided by the beautiful stained glass window backdrop. Simon Lucas‘ drumming too must be commended along with Christopher Naughton‘s crowd-leading abilities. The band played a new song ‘The Dark Hereafter’ and fan favourite ‘A Valley Thick With Oaks’ back to back which could have ended the set perfectly there. But the band played two more songs, ending on a triumphant note. Winterfylleth were simply a great end to a great night and they proved why they are one of the best black metal bands in the country.

So we wrapped up the Metal Recusants 5th birthday party, same time next year, lads?

Set List:
The Wayfarer Part 1 and 2
The Swart Raven
Forsaken in Stone
The Dark Hereafter
A Valley Thick With Oaks
Whisper of the Elements
Mam Tor (The Shivering Mountain)

Winterfylleth (8 of 11) MR 5 anniversary

Picture by Duncan Sweeney.


The King is Blind
Colchester Arts Centre

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All live photography by Duncan Sweeney.

Purchase our limited edition 5th Anniversary T-Shirt here.

About Jack (820 Articles)
I am a recent graduate from the University of Essex in Colchester where by the luck of Odin I met the editor, Dom. I first got into metal when I was 13 and now I am 22 and own an uncountable amount of band T-shirts. I also regularly attend gigs (local and in neighbouring areas) as well as festivals. My musical taste is varied; I like nu metal (my first love), thrash, black, death, doom, folk, sludge (my favourite genre), symphonic and many more of the multiple genres that metal has to offer, I even like some metalcore (I know it's a dirty word within some metal circles but some of it is outstanding). One of my most memorable metal moments was meeting Grand Magus at the Bloodstock signing tent and having the whole tent to myself, spending a few minutes talking to them.

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