On the eve of Halloween, I flew into Philly for this massive show. Why? Why not!? A near sold-out Fillmore hosted Behemoth’s the Ecclesia Diabolica America tour 2018. Also on the bill were Swedish legends, At The Gates and the U.S.’s own Wolves At The Throne Room. This was a regular United Nations of metal type of night. Wolves at the Throne Room brought their atmospheric black metal. With keyboards and burning sage and playing just three songs only, they entranced the Philly fans.
At The Gates came out with eleven melodic bashers. Mostly leaning on the newer material as well as a few choice classics. Tomas and company came to win. From ‘To Drink From the Night Itself’ to ‘Blinded by Fear’, every song was electric with the crowd sing along. This is my first time seeing new guitarist Jonas Stålhammar, He fits right in and has one of the metal-est last names ever!
Behemoth kicked off their 14 song assault was intro ‘Solve’, right into a curtain drop at the start of ‘Wolves Ov Siberia’. This new era of the band came decked out in new masks, new stage set and multiple costume changes. The crowd was singing along to the new songs like it they were classics. For me they’ve moved beyond a band, they are an event. The stage was accented by inverted crosses of smoke every few songs. Nergal’s’ voice just commands your attention. The show was like a Satanic revival.
This is a well-balanced tour with three bands that sound nothing alike. All three bands will be continuing this tour in Europe this winter. More tours should be this diverse.
WORDS AND PHOTOS BY OMAR CORDY