It was another exciting event at Union Hall, as the 2014 Metal Alliance Tour was in town and metal fans were lined up around the block to see their favourite artists.

Kicking off this year’s tour stop in YEG was melodic death metal band, Black Crown Initiate, from Reading, Pennsylvania. After releasing their debut EP, Song Of The Crippled Bull, these five metallers became a sensation in their home town, and even more so now that they are on a renowned metal tour like Metal Alliance. As the gentlemen took place on stage, the floor began to fill up and, eventually, everybody was banging their heads. Black Crown Initiate exited the stage, having left their black mark on Edmonton.

Next up, Norwegian black metal band, 1349. Complete with traditional Norwegian corpse paint, 1349 put on an unreal performance. Playing songs both old and new, these four brought something entirely new to the table. Having been described as, “The soundscape to Hell, unrelenting and intense,” they definitely left Edmonton a little bit darker and a little bit stranger. I, for one, cannot wait until their next visit in YEG.

Third on the bill were metal heavyweights from New Orleans, Goatwhore, who were the perfect co-headliner for this year’s tour. Bringing forth an entirely new energy to Union Hall with screaming guitars and thundering drums, everyone in the house was in motion, whether it be in the mosh pit, or people headbanging on the upper level of the venue. The energy of the crowd was at an all-time high, especially when frontman Ben Falgoust announced that they are releasing a new album entitled, Constricting Rage Of The Merciless, on July 8th. With smiles and high-fives coming around from band members to the people in the crowd, Goatwhore left with Edmonton fans wanting more.

Lastly, Polish death metal sensation, Behemoth. Anticipation and excitement was thick in the air. Strobe lights fired as Seth, Inferno, Orion and Nergal all took place on stage. The crowd cheering as loud as I have ever heard before. Opening their set with “Blow Your Trumpets Gabriel” – the single off of their new album, The Satanist – the audience went wild! Playing songs from their new album, along with a handful of fan favourites such as “Ov Fire And The Void” and “Christians To The Lions”, Behemoth had the crowd cheering, chanting and moving – all in sheer awe of what they were witnessing. Delivering an in-your-face performance, accompanied with an outstanding setlist, Behemoth and the entire Metal Alliance Tour had once again left an unbeatable impression on Edmonton.

Words and photos by Dana Zuk

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