Saint Vitus @ Truckstop Alaska, Gothenburg (SE)

SAINT VITUS / MARELD

Date: 17th June, 2015
Venue: Truckstop Alaska
Tickets: 230SEK (€24/$27)
Promoter: Truckstop Alaska
Photos: Erika Wallberg


Damn, I almost missed this one but I'm not sure how it came so close. Perhaps, the idea was to see SAINT VITUS on ‘Copenhell’ but since that didn't become the plan this year, I should have had this gig in mind anyway. But no, Tuesday afternoon it came to mind and I guess at least that's good; it could have come by Thursday instead and that would have been very annoying. So, planned or not, the concert happened and I was there!

MARELD from Eskilstuna opened the evening for a rather sparse crowd. To me, they were an odd addition to the bill with their Death Metal-influenced Hardcore styled music. Since this is not my cup of tea whatsoever, I couldn't judge if MARELD's music was good or not. I liked some parts; the rolling groove with resemblances towards to modern ENTOMBED or MACHINE HEAD while the parts being real Hardcore I didn't appreciate as much. And then, of course it's not fun to play for a rather empty floor - it's hard to boost up energy and give all but I have to say, there wasn't much of a show to watch either. So, as warm-up's they didn't do much at all. I hate to say it but the evening's DJ had the greatest taste in music, so that did more for my mood than MARELD, but again, I'm not much of a Hardcore fan either.


In the middle of the week, it feels rather late for the headliner to start a bit after 10pm but I guess that is rather common when the venue is more of a nightclub than a concert venue. The wait was sure worth it at least. Last time I saw SAINT VITUS, Wino was on a plane back to USA, after being deported from Norway, so that became a very special gig. Now, having original vocalist Scott Reagers in the band, it felt like it could be an equally special night. Perhaps, I appreciate the records Wino sings on more than the absolute first SAINT VITUS releases but after this show, it's not as distinct anymore. These first releases are rather odd of course but seeing it live and have it sound exactly the same, in the same peculiar way these songs sure grew on me.

Since the place wasn't packed, it had gotten a lot better since MARELD's session at least but there wasn't any pressure at the front, the show started off a bit slow. I guess most others felt the same as I did, wondering if Scott could pull this off. And hell yes, he did. Around "Zombie Hunger", three songs into the set he was warmed up and started to give it all. His voice is better than it used to be and with his old school Punk attitude, it became a perfect match to the raw attitude that is the SAINT VITUS trademark. For "War Is Our Destiny" the crowd was warmed up also and tagged along with Scott's energy. "White Stallions" was the song that got the strongest response from the crowd together with "Burial At Sea"; both sounded fantastic.

Towards the end of the set, Dave Chandlers' wha-wha started to sound like someone was pouring water straight into the microphone and while the sound tech tried to fix it, Scott took the chance to talk a bit with the crowd. Or at least confirming that Dave broke something on stage and giggle a bit in the microphone. In no time they were off again, I'm not sure the issue was fixed but there was sound coming from the guitar and that seemed enough for Dave. It still is so fascinating to see SAINT VITUS play, if you look at what's right according to music journalists and the press, SAINT VITUS is the opposite. It's raw, filthy and so right but still so far from the book-samples. Ok, much is actually Henry Vasquez virtue, his skills as a drummer is amazing. I love his groove and also he's a lot of fun to watch also which is needed on occasion with SAINT VITUS. Mark Addams play and is on stage of course but he's not moving much. It was only at that show in Gothenburg I've seen him claiming some space on stage. Here he was back in his corner again.

The trademark track "Saint Vitus" ended the main set but the crowd wouldn't leave with this. After some shouting, SAINT VITUS came back and kicked off "Born Too Late" which of course is extra cool since this is a Wino song. It worked equally great with Scott also.

I have to admit I was damn tired getting to Truckstop Alaska starting to question if it was worth going to the show. Of course, it was! Afterwards, I was in a very good mood and had much more energy compared to a few hours earlier. It's rare that concerts with bands I've seen a bunch of times make me feel like this. SAINT VITUS did that the last time and also this one. Just a shame the Gothenburg metalheads stayed at home this rainy Wednesday evening...

SAINT VITUS setlist:

01. "Dark World"
02. "One Mind"
04. "Zombie Hunger"
05. "War Is Our Destiny"
06. "White Magic Black Magic"
07. "White Stallions"
08. "Burial At Sea"
09. "Look Behind You"
10. "Saint Vitus"
11. "Born Too Late"

SAINT VITUS

Saint Vitus @ Truckstop Alaska (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saint Vitus @ Truckstop Alaska (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saint Vitus @ Truckstop Alaska (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saint Vitus @ Truckstop Alaska (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saint Vitus @ Truckstop Alaska (photos by Erika Wallberg)
Saint Vitus @ Truckstop Alaska (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saint Vitus @ Truckstop Alaska (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saint Vitus @ Truckstop Alaska (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saint Vitus @ Truckstop Alaska (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saint Vitus @ Truckstop Alaska (photos by Erika Wallberg)
Saint Vitus @ Truckstop Alaska (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saint Vitus @ Truckstop Alaska (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saint Vitus @ Truckstop Alaska (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saint Vitus @ Truckstop Alaska (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saint Vitus @ Truckstop Alaska (photos by Erika Wallberg)

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