Union Transfer


Abbath & High On Fire

The Decibel Magazine Tour 2016

Abbath & High On Fire

Skeletonwitch, Tribulation, Crypt Sermon

Fri, April 15, 2016

Doors: 6:00 pm / Show: 6:45 pm

Union Transfer

Philadelphia, PA


This event is all ages

When Abbath announced that he had left IMMORTAL, it sent massive shockwaves through the metal scene. The iconic frontman had long become the "face" of the Norwegian black scene, his image synonymous with this style. Now the legend returns with his new band ABBATH and a crushing eponymous debut album, unleashing all the fury of a Nordic blizzard at full force. Of course the band is equally at home in writing anthemic mid-tempo hymns. Abbath's characteristic riffing shines clearly through it all: heavy, harsh, and yet catchy and melodic with a touch of epic BATHORY, MOTÖRHEAD, and even KISS. At the same time there is no danger of repeating the formula of IMMORTAL or the mastermind's other project under the moniker I, which was shared with King. The bass player from Bergen has again joined Abbath and brought his impressive song-writing skills to the battlefield. GORGOROTH, GOD SEED, and OV HELL bear witness to King's exceptional talent as a composer, while contributions to AUDREY HORNE and SAHG demonstrate his wide stylistic range. The final keystone to ABBATH lies in the outstanding drumming delivered by the mysterious Creature. The trio has already proved its worth as a live entity at several headlining festival shows as well, where ABBATH were joined by an additional guitarist. 'Abbath' impresses from start to finish. This is exactly the album that all fans of this particular Bergen brand of black metal have been hoping for. Hold on tight or get blown away. ABBATH are here now and ready to conquer the world!
High On Fire
High On Fire
Born from the ashes of their respective former bands seventeen years ago, High On Fire wasted little time in calling down the incomparable thunder and tumult, inspiring countless other bands and artists in the time since. Over the course of their career thus far and through various lineup changes, the three-piece consisting of Matt Pike (vocals/guitar), Jeff Matz (bass), and Des Kenzel (drums) is the band at their most fully realized and utterly relentless. Through six full-lengths and a number of live releases and EPs, the punching command of High On Fire has established the band as an unmatched and wholly unmistakable force in the realm of heavy metal.

Beginning with 2000’s The Art of Self Defense, the band’s rise to nearly universal acclaim and respect was not unlike the full throttle gallop of their music with critics, fans, and peers alike heralding the band’s sound as a masterful nod to metal’s roots threaded through an unforgiving ferocity and execution that remains matchless even now. After joining independent metal’s esteemed label Relapse Records in 2001, High On Fire unleashed what would become three of the most dynamically influential heavy music releases of the 21st century thus far with Surrounded by Thieves (2002), Blessed Black Wings (2005), and Death Is This Communion (2007).

A year after signing with the highly regarded eOne label, High On Fire released 2010’s Snakes for the Divine – a powerhouse record that saw the band embrace a more ornate approach with their sound without compromising its most inimitably raw edges. The album garnered the band enough well-deserved notice that they soon found themselves supporting Metallica in the same year. With widely respected producer/engineer Kurt Ballou at the helm, 2012’s De Vermis Mysteriis brought High On Fire immediate and virtually universal acclaim from critics and listeners alike who lauded the record as the group’s most compositionally flawless to date. Just twelve years after their debut, High On Fire had become the litmus test for nearly every other group who might lay claim to the title of “heavy” in their wake.

Now, three years later, High On Fire are set to unbridle their most formidably heavy release yet with Luminiferous. A nine-track venture into those signature sky-shredding riffs of Matt Pike, pummeling bass work of Jeff Matz, and hellish gallop of Des Kensel, Luminiferous is the unequivocal culmination of the band’s characteristically unhinged yet entirely focused savagery. Make no mistake, though. This is not some casual revisit to formula for the Oakland-based trio. Building on those tendencies of its last two predecessors, Lumifierous finds Pike at his most vocally daring yet, infusing the explosiveness of sound with his melodic but no less scorched vocal stylizations.

Beginning with the whiplash rhythm of “The Black Plot,” Luminiferous charges forward with abandon, only briefly slowing its churn with “The Cave,” and its descent into a psychedelic and ethereal haze. Whether with the breakneck anthem of “Carcosa,” the blistering thrash of “Slave the Hive,” or the roaring sonic gauntlet of “The Sunless Years,” Luminiferous represents yet another definitive stroke of heavy metal mastery for this inimitable band that’s been breaking and rewriting the rules for years now. Further proof that heavy metal’s throne remains occupied with only one band, Luminiferous is a crowning achievement for High On Fire and an undeniable declaration that their reign isn’t likely to end any time soon.
In 2003, when American teenagers were raiding the makeup sections of their local Halloween shops to paint up like their favorite black metal bands… there was Skeletonwitch.

In 2005, when every burnout who sold enough weed bought an Orange amp and tuned their guitar down to “C”… there was Skeletonwitch.

In 2007, when kids with pricey haircuts and freshly inked full-sleeves learned two At The Gates riffs and simplified them with breakdowns… there was Skeletonwitch.

In 2010, when sweep-picking Guitar Center employees decided to eschew songwriting and showcase their “chops” in soulless robotic fashion… there was Skeletonwitch.

Today, in a landscape that finds them surrounded by a) bands begging their own fans for money, b) vest-wearing, by-the-numbers “retro” rock nostalgia and c) heavy labels blindly signing bands based on breast implants… there, still, is Skeletonwitch, a band that has successfully carved its own left-hand path with an unwavering quality of metal and old-fashioned hard work. This organic approach has garnered legions of fans and an undeniable level of respect in the worldwide metal community from both sides of the stage.

As SKELETONWITCH celebrate its 10th anniversary this year, it’s fitting to reflect on some notable numbers from the band’s first decade of destruction:

4: Number of full-length releases (with #5 due on Oct. 29)

2: Number of those full-lengths to crack the Billboard Top 200

1 each: Number of times they’ve appeared on the covers of Decibel and Terrorizer magazines

7: European tours including performances at the metal’s largest and most respected festivals such as Wacken, Summer Breeze, Graspop, Tuska, Bloodstock and more

500,000+: Number of miles the band has traveled across North America

0: Number of those miles driven by someone other than guitarist Nate Garnette

Countless: cans of beer consumed, high fives given and good times had.
Swedish metal band, TRIBULATION, and Century Media Records are proud to announce a worldwide deal to spread the band's upcoming aural horrors. The band is in the studio right now to record its third album which is expected to be released in April 2015 after wrapping up a US tour with genre titans BEHEMOTH and CANNIBAL CORPSE.

The band comments: "We are very pleased to announce that we have signed a worldwide deal with Century Media Records. Our journey has been slow but steady, but it is now time for us to stretch our black wings further throughout the world and we are sure that Century Media Records is the label that can help us do that.

Die Todten reiten schnell...* In early December we will once again enter the studio, this time to record our third album. We have covered ourselves in the darkness of the divine and the ghastly and have emerged with something that we truly believe in. Though it is an album that is in every inch TRIBULATION, expect nothing and let the music take you to the unexpected. It is a journey in its own right, for us to travel with the music that we make and at each turn it takes we are closing in on a goal that is hopefully forever out of our reach. Thus, we now prepare to die to let a new shape of the vampyre return in 2015."
(* Gottfried August Bürger, 1773)

Jens Prueter, Head Of A&R Century Media Records Europe, is equally pleased: "I first saw TRIBULATION in July 2011 in a small club in Oberhausen and was impressed by their unique kind of Death Metal. Their debut album was deeply rooted in the mid to late 80's Death/Thrash/Black Metal but far away from a retro, old school sound. They took all classic influences and created their own universe - even more with the second album which was far beyond the formulas of death metal. I'm glad we had a good talk and cold beers back in 2011, and always remained in contact. Looking forward to working with them and help them to progress into something even bigger and darker."

TRIBULATION formed in 2004 in the west of Sweden and quickly gained underground reputation with their first demo and the Putrid Rebirth EP in 2006. The first album The Horror (2009) was followed by various tours and festivals across Europe. After the release of The Formulas Of Death (2013), the band played even more festivals and completed their first US tour with WATAIN and IN SOLITUDE, as well as most recently also a tour through Poland together with BEHEMOTH. Be prepared for 2015, Springtime will be sinister...
Crypt Sermon
Founded on the principles of unwavering epic doom metal, CRYPT SERMON exists to drive out the current trends choking the scene.
Venue Information:
Union Transfer
1026 Spring Garden St.
Philadelphia, PA, 19123