Inferno Metal Festival 2023 – WATAIN, NILE, UNLEASHED, ABBATH Blaze The Skies!

May 16, 2023, a year ago

By Alitzia Tyminski

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Another edition of the Inferno Metal Festival burned up Oslo, Norway from April 6-9 – the annual fest focuses on extreme metal and was founded by Borknagar guitarist Jens F. Ryland in 2001. Below is the report of days 3 and 4 featuring Watain, Nile, Unleashed, Abbath, and more!

Day 3
Serena Cherry of Svalbard spoke on stage about how she went to Inferno Metal Festival in 2005 and saw Arcturus live. Many years later it was a full circle moment with her  performing at Inferno Metal Festival with Arcturus performing the same day. Serena proudly stated Inferno Metal Festival is the best metal festival in the world. Svalbard ended the set with their latest, “Eternal Spirits” with a recent and well deserved signing to Nuclear Blast.

Skol, bassist of Arcturus played a flawless rendition of the iconic bass line off their classic and personal favourite “Nightmare Heaven” a track ahead of its time when released and a dream come true to see live was a standout during their set. Hellhammer was triumphant through and through on drums with his signature Mayhem logo on the bass drum.

Gaerea shrouded in black was a blast beat fury, notably Gaerea’s drummer Diogo Mota carrying their set with hyperspeed blast beats.

Nile was flowing on an extensive European tour with a stop and signing session at Inferno with Scott Eames of Vital Remains on guitar and his vocals brought their massacre to Oslo.

There was no holding back for Watain, headliners of the third evening with sheer blood and flames; Watain performed a special performance for die-hard fans making their performance the most memorable.

Day 4 
Urgehal performed a special performance since reforming in 2022, many attendees did not want to miss.

Enzifer was shrouded in thick fog on guitar with his iconic malevolent imagery from the album cover Through Thick Fog Till Death. Urgehal held a signing session for fans after their set at the Rockefeller venue.

Copenhagen’s Afsky was completely full to capacity where fans lined up outside John Dee to catch a glimpse of their set.

Unleashed came down heavier than Thor’s hammer with a set of bone splitting Viking Swedish death metal at John Dee. Johnny Hedlund shouts, “The King Lost His Crown!” a track off their latest album on Napalm. John Dee was jam packed without much legroom, Tomas and Fredrik in thunderous sync on guitars during “Midvinterblot” heavy AF live, as Johnny Hedlund roars, “Hail Frey! Drink to prosperity!”

Abbath was reminiscent of a Frank Frazetta painting come to life on stage and endless fog was like an ice storm overtaking Rockefeller emanating through Abbath and his disciples with one of the opening tracks and I cover, “Battalions”. A standout moment was when Abbath blew fire and held a flaming torch on stage.

Oslo’s Fleshmeadow, a fusion of technical death metal and black metal performed at John Dee with a 2023 release, Domus Cadavra.

Boston’s Elder closed the fest with progressive rock and doom metal thunder echoing throughout the Rockefeller venue on the last night of Inferno. It was the perfect closer to the 4 day festival, with a loyal following year after year and another year of unforgettable memories, the presale tickets have already sold out for 2024.

Check out more Inferno Metal Festival 2023 coverage here.

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