This is a live DVD by a Russian Black Metal band called Pseudogod. Let’s say you have not heard of them maybe… I would compare these guys to a great Finnish group like Horna perhaps. Some true allegiance to evil is occurring with these guys, it is not just some kind of makeup show like some acts out there. Pseudogod is for real. I appreciate the grimy and repetitive feeling that these guys have. There is so much out there in the Black Metal world that is so contrived and pretentious, but you will always be able to tell the difference between that kind of stuff and something like this. What is important in this? Either an immense and undeniable connection to nature, or a genuine allegiance to the (according to some, evil) powers that travel through the astral plane. If one of those things is not there, it’s just not Black Metal but instead some sort of fantasy product. The repetitive nature of the riffing and vocalization is meant to invoke a trance state, it is a means to an end. It is not created to be musical, or to be a part of some existing trend. It is a means to an end, a form of travel and in the best scenarios a positive expression of one’s personal experience with the world that lies beyond our own.
Both of these sets on this disc end with a cover of the great “Gate Of Nanna” by the legendary lunar-obsessed Beherit during their early glory days, and in fact the only difference between the two setlists here is that the Moscow performance features “Illusion Of Salvation,” which is absent from the St. Petersburg performance. Both of the sets are really good, but at the Moscow performance the club was kind of dark, making the group somewhat hard to see during a lot of the performance. Still, there are sound differences between the two that make the inclusion of both performances a welcome factor of this DVD… in particular the drummer is nice and loud during the recording of the Moscow performance, which is great because he is just kicking serious ass. Sometimes I am hearing things that I think are keyboard samples or something and it’s just that the drummer is playing so fast that it’s kind of echoing in the club. These guys sound seriously evil here.
The St. Petersburg set is the superior of the two, however… the band is completely on fire, and the camerawork and lighting for the footage is superb. I enjoyed watching the first set while it was happening, but the second performance on here really got my attention. Each song performed at the Moscow gig takes on a fiercer sort of spirit, the stakes seem higher and the energy is more complete. The look of joy on the faces of some of the people in the audience juxtaposed with some seriously upset looking people is amazing. Everyone is feeling it though. “Firstborn Of Abhorrence” sounds like the evil spirits who wish to devour souls are coming through the throat of the groups singer as the band channels their power and allows them entry into this world. Then, just when you don’t think it could get any more awesome, the version of “The Gate Of Nanna” that concludes this set is unreal… a bunch of guys in the crowd get on stage during the performance (dudes from Beherit? Maybe… I don’t know) and seriously help Pseudogod call down Lucifer. The performance ends with a shaved head guy waving a human skull, while many people onstage wearing large spikes chant “Hail Satan! Hail Lucifer!” What could be better than that?
01) Live in Relax Club (X.V.MMIX Moscow)
02) Live in Arktika Club (III.X.MMIX St. Petersburg)
Written by: Joseph Gates
Label: Satanic Skinhead Propaganda (US) / N/A / DVD