Midnight joins Norwegian black metal band Mayhem To Hit The Mohawk In Austin
AUSTIN, TX- Midnight. A one-man show consisting of multi-instrumentalist Anthenar, currently touring with an amazing mystery drummer and guitarist in support of the fifth full-length album, ‘Let There Be Witchery’ (Metal Blade). This is the first time on the road for Midnight since the pandemic aside from a few festival appearances.
This was my first time seeing the Cleveland-based artist. I got an email with touring dates and requested access immediately and was thrilled to find out they were touring with the legendary black Norwegian metal band Mayhem, who I clearly clearly ‘discovered’ at age 17 (fortunately before the film adaptation of ‘Lords Of Chaos’ was released)
Midnight took the outdoor stage at Austin’s Mohawk and just like the record they didn’t try to reinvent the wheel; instead delivering a super fun and energetic head-splitting set that felt like experiencing someone’s binging dopamine high. Starting with “Black Rock and Roll” from 2012’s ‘Complete and Total Hell’, followed by “Poison Trash” from ‘Let There Be Witchery’, Midnight continued alternating songs from ‘Satanic Royalty’, ‘Rebirth by Blasphemy’, ‘Sweet Death and Ecstasy’ and ‘No Mercy for Mayhem’ until finishing an amazing 11 song performance.
A rando messaged me on Facebook: “Do any women go to those shows?” Looks like a whole bunch of slinging-hanging dicks. Does anybody ever score at a mosh pit?.
Yes! There were loads of women of all ages and many of them upfront or crowd surfing, not removed from their enjoyment by the male audience. From what I could tell everyone was having a great time and people who weren’t moshing were left alone and seemed to be fans attending for the music alone and not to ‘score’. Whatever that means to some.
Leather jackets, Venom-esque but definitely someone with a clear vision for what they’re doing, I’d dare to say this is the best Midnight has ever been.
Mayhem was up next; heavy ceremonial ambiance, lighting, raging guitars, and a theatrical aesthetic greeted an excited audience that had fists up and loudly welcomed the band.
The long set consisted of 3 acts and introduced classics like “Deathcrush” and “Symbols of Bloodswords” but moved predominantly towards the most recent material from 2019’s ‘Daemon’.
It was a great night that had a feeling of community; I was right at home meeting other girls from out-of-town that came specifically for this show, unaware of SXSW happening at the same time. There were drunk buddies that allowed me to shoot from their spot so I wouldn’t be smashed with my equipment upfront, a talented young woman who makes interesting chokers, longtime friends that met exclusively for this… The mask behind the scene turned out to be one with a smile and probably one of my favorites to welcome a festival that sometimes feels a bit too posey for my taste.
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