Imperium Dekadenz live in London 2019

Camden town has always been known for being the home for alternative people, from accommodating independent shops and stalls to having some of the best rock and metal bars around. The gig tonight was held at one of those bars. From the moment you walk in, the atmosphere hits you; the best of heavy metal music playing, religious decorations, and the headlining band of the night could even be seen mingling with their fans. The black heart should be on everyone’s list of “to visit” places, especially if it suits your style.
Imperium Dekadenz london Show 2019 poster
The tiny venue could be found up some steep, curved stairs. It’s so small that it even lacks a bar, so if you want a drink you have to head back down the spiralling works of Satan. However, something about the entire place just made it feel very welcoming. As 7:30pm hit, the crowds gathered up to witness the 4-piece Stahlsarg from Suffolk, UK, unleashing their Norwegian-inspired black metal to start the night. Their corpsepainting and terrifying deathly facial expressions gave off an intense aura, and as the music started you could immediately feel involved with it as they hit the audience with the fast-paced “Castle Wewelsburg”. That was a good choice of song as it set a darkened atmosphere in the room, greatly appropriate for the other bands to follow up with. The setlist consisted of a mixture of songs from their most recent album “Mechanisms of Misanthropy” and a couple from their previous debut album, “Comrades in Death”. The row of headbangers at the front was an accurate representation of how the night was going so far. The set felt like it ended too soon but that may be because of how enjoyable Stahlsarg are to watch, with the last song” Damocles XIII” closing off their slot.
 
During changeover, as most folk braved it down the stairs for a well-deserved beer, the remaining few were treated to some appropriately chosen tracks from bands such as Emperor and Dimmu Borgir, keeping the black metal spirit going. The second band of the night, Agrona, was preparing all their equipment for their 20:25 slot.
 
The 6-piece death/black metal band, Agrona, had come all the way from Cardiff, Wales, to play this, and was received incredibly well by a room of sweaty metalheads, all ready and wanting more. The once again corpse painted group dived straight into “Immaterium”, from their debut album “Realm of the Fallen”, which picked up the energy Stahlsarg had left in the room. Agrona are punchier and slightly less 90s Norwegian themed in comparison to the first band, though the black metal blood still flows through this groups veins. The songs are vocally performed by the fierce couple Taranis and Adara, who complement one another on stage. With Taranis’ angry war like roars and Adara’s piercing death screams that rip right into your soul, this band got some great reactions from the audience, from head banging to even some fist punching the air. The rather witchy presence Adara gave off bounced off from her 5 other talented mand mates who were wearing specially made stage wear such as leather armour and bullet belts, to get the crowds more involved with their art. “Risen” was their last song, for which Adara walked off the stage and was replaced by bassist/other vocalist Kreulon, who balanced his vocal parts with his bass very well.
 
There was a 20 minute changeover, during which the headlining band Imperium Dekadenz had to annihilate everyone’s eardrums with their soundcheck.
 
Imperium Dekadenz are a two-man band from the South West of Germany. Camden was the first stop on their two date UK “tour” supporting their latest release “When We Are Forgotten”, which came out in August, 2019. This was the first time the duo performed a headline show in the UK and to absolutely nobody’s surprise, the turnout for this atmospheric black metal band was impressive especially considering how niche this genre of music is. There were some dedicated fans in the crowd waiting eagerly to see them finally play this small island again, and the room was filled with buzzing excitement when the group plunged straight into their first song, “Striga”, from their 2013 album “Meadows of Nostalgia”. The long introduction of the song made this a fine starting point. Vocalist Horaz and drummer Vespasian were joined on stage by their live members Harvst on bass, Kaelt on guitar and Naavl also on guitar, all of whom bring a certain level of intimidation with their charged stage personas. Horaz’s vocals are very impressive too, for such a tall guy to be able to produce such emotionally driven screeching vocals; it definitely takes a lot of skill and talent. The second song, “Absenz Elysium” came from their latest album and was well received by the audience, who were reacting well to the band’s interaction. “Pure Nocturnal Rome” and another new one “Bis Ich Bin” came on next, before Horaz announced that unfortunately there was an issue with the merchandise shipping and to everyone’s regret they were unable to sell anything at the show, however he still pointed the audience to support the other bands by buying their merch. “Schwarze Wälder” was the next song followed by “Transcendence”, which was one that seemed to stand out the most from the rest, possibly because of its upbeat, electric tones. The night was finished off with “A Million Moons” and finally, one of their very old songs, “Reich Der Fahlen Seelen”.
 
The overall night was very successful, every single band had something different to offer, however Imperium Dekadenz have definitely left an impression on the London crowds. In the slim chance that Brexit doesn’t totally destroy touring opportunities for international bands, there is no doubt that in no time at all these guys will be gladly welcomed back on bigger stages in the UK for even more dates.