Gig Review: Persefone / Oddland / Defecto – The Ruby Lounge, Manchester (3rd April 2018)

Defecto (c) Bukavac Photography

It’s almost like Christmas comes early every time that I get the chance to see Persefone. The Andorran prog metallers have been going from strength to strength recently and this time decided to play a few dates in the UK instead of the usual London only show. With having relocated to the Manchester area and also happening to have the night free, it was a no-brainer for me to go down and see the guys for a third time.

Due to having a catch-up chat with the guys from Persefone, I ended up missing the vast majority of Defecto (8)‘s set. From what I could hear in the production office they sounded pretty good and that was further solidified when I came into the main venue. Playing a mix of progressive and straightforward metal, the band were met with a crowd that was appreciative but seemed to be saving its energy for later. The band continued on undeterred and in my opinion delivered an incredibly enjoyable set. I can see the band going to do great things in the next few years and I heartily look forward to the next time I get to see them.

Oddland (c) Bukavac Photography

Next up on the stage were Oddland (8). Initially I wasn’t sure what to make of them as I did find them a little “odd”. Some of the songs ended a little abruptly and I couldn’t really hear the vocalist too well. After re-positioning myself and as time went on, both myself and the crowd warmed to the band and the applause after songs gradually got louder and louder. At parts during some of the latter songs, it was as if Mikael from Opeth had started singing which fit perfectly with the music. If Opeth are looking for a band to open for them on one of their upcoming tours, then I would seriously advise them to consider bringing Oddland along with them.

It was then time for the main event. Despite a few technical hiccups during changeover, the crowd were ecstatic for arrival of the Andorran sextet. Coming on to the title track from their latest album Aathma, Persefone (10) set the venue ablaze with both their incredible music and newly improved stage show. Like last time, they had the lights with them as part of the backdrop. Unlike last time however, guitarist Carlos had spent a lot of working with the lighting engineer to sync the lights to the music. It was almost like Meshuggah at points with lights flashing like mad and syncing perfectly with the syncopated riffs.

Persefone (c) Bukavac Photography

In the interview prior to the show, the band had mentioned that the setlist was going to be quite different from last time in that it would feature more from Aathma and a few other choice songs from their back catalogue. With a wide variety of songs from that album being played such as “Stillness is Timeless” and “Cosmic Walkers” alongside classics such as “The Great Reality” and “Mind as Universe” the band delivered a setlist that flowed perfectly from one song to the next. The audience clearly thought so as with multiple members singing along and thoroughly enjoying the music.

With this being my third time seeing Persefone in the UK, some people might say “oh, you’ve seen them many times now. Do you not get bored of watching them?” Far from it. If anything, I only look forward to each time even more as each and every time the band somehow find a way of improving something. Be it the setlist, the lightshow or the fact the funny messages are no longer in the in-ears, the band somehow keep managing to set the bar even higher for the next time they play. And each and every time, they blow away all my expectations. Till next we meet, guys!

All photos courtesy Bukavac Photography.

Persefone: official | facebook twitter | youtube

Oddland: official | facebook

Defecto: official | facebook

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