Posts Tagged ‘orchestra’


As 2017 marks the year of the great return of Norwegian symphonic black metal giants, Dimmu Borgir, they will release their highly-anticipated double-DVD Forces Of The Northern Night on April 28th. Available in different formats, the release will contain two live rituals:

Their legendary concert in Oslo, showing Dimmu Borgir on stage with the Norwegian Radio Orchestra and a bombastic choir as well as the entire performance at Wacken Open Air with almost 100 musicians in action.

Today, the Norwegians unveil their first video from the Wacken show – see the raging black metal hymn “Mourning Palace” live with the Czech National Symphonic Orchestra inside!  (more…)

DSO-pinataThe backstory of Diablo Swing Orchestra is so preposterous it just might be true. It claims the members are direct descendants of “The Devil’s Orchestra,” one that existed in Sweden in the later half of the 16th century, and became enemies of the church. They eventually were banned from playing, accused of being devil worshipers and spawn of Satan. A bounty was put out, leading to their capture and then hanging. But before this, they made a pact in sealed envelopes, giving their descendants the task of reuniting the orchestra in 500 years.

So that brings us to the present and the Diablo Swing Orchestra—the descendants of The Devil’s Orchestra, except I don’t think “swing” existed in the 16th century. Can you imagine trying to swing dance in some of the attire worn in those times?

The name says it all—this is exactly how this band sounds, yet it’s really unlike anything you have ever heard. So many bands try to experiment with so many styles and subgenres of music on an album that it ends up sounding like a technical, schizophrenic mess. Not Diablo Swing Orchestra. This is the soundtrack you’ve yet to hear to your Halloween party. This is the album that’s going to make you say, “Why has no one else ever done this?” (more…)

Dimmu-abraOver the past decade, Norwegian extreme metal band Dimmu Borgir has become the black metal equivalent of Metallica. Purists bemoan the lack of … something in their music and cry “sell out” because they have been embraced by people that are not necessarily the core audience.

But where Metallica has gone back to their roots in recent years, Dimmu has doubled down on its course. You think going on a mainstream metal tour like Ozzfest was something? We’ll tour Europe with Korn! You think using an orchestra was something? We’ll use a choir! Didn’t like our using clean vocals? Fuck you, we’ll use a female vocalist!

The band’s new release, Abrahadabra, adds even more bombast to what was already a bombastic sound. There’s no overlying concept here like the band’s previous release, In Sorte Diaboli. The title is a reference to noted black magic practicioner Aleister Crowley, but there is no endorsement or arc referencing Crowley’s views or beliefs. Abrahadabra is about a band being whoever the hell they want to be, which does fit in with Crowley’s libertarian social views. (more…)

Epica-The_Classical_ConspiracyThe unification of metal and classical music is something we have seen more and more of during the last decade. Metallica was one of the first metal bands to perform with an orchestra and release a live album documenting that performance (S&M). More recently, Within Temptation followed with their grand DVD/CD Black Symphony. But to this point no band has seemed better suited for this type of concert than Epica. They combine classical, opera, power metal, death and goth, creating symphonic music that is multi-faceted and unique. Epica already features a mini-orchestra and choir in its ranks, so this was a natural step.

On June 14, 2008, this became reality when they collaborated with a full orchestra and choir in Miskolc, Hungary, during the Miskolc International Opera Festival. The band performed a 45-minute set of metal adaptations of classical songs and movie soundtracks, accompanied by the orchestra and choir, as well as symphonic versions of its own songs. The end result is The Classical Conspiracy, a double live album commemorating the event. (more…)

Epica's Simone Simons

“A Night at the Opera” with Epica’s Simone Simons

The Dutch have been the leaders of female-fronted metal for several years. Bands like The Gathering, Within Temptation and After Forever were some of the first to have worldwide success and the subgenre is now stronger than ever. Formed by ex-After Forever guitarist Mark Jansen in 2002, Epica has had great success due to their powerful combination of orchestration and symphonic metal. Much of that success can be attributed to their own metal maiden, the beautiful and talented vocalist Simone Simons. She sings in an operatic voice like no other and her style is unique for heavy metal. She is the foundation and centerpiece of Epica. The band has released four albums and currently is recording album No. 5, tentatively set for a late-2009 release.

On June 14, 2008, Epica followed other metal acts like Metallica and Within Temptation by collaborating with a full orchestra and choir in Miskolc, Hungary, during the Miskolc International Opera Festival. The band performed a 45-minute set of metal adaptations of classical songs and movie soundtracks, accompanied by the orchestra and choir, as well as symphonic versions of its own songs. The end result is The Classical Conspiracy (released May 8, 2009 by Nuclear Blast), a double live album commemorating the event.

Simons recently checked in with Live-Metal.Net’s Jeff Maki to discuss The Classical Conspiracy, the beginnings of Epica, their next studio album and more. (more…)