We have a little ponder over some bands for Damnation 2023.
Damnation Festival moved to a new home of Bowlers Exhibition Centre in 2022 to great success. A larger venue, a wider bill, and more good vibes than ever before.
In the world of ‘heavy metal’ there are so many sub genres and styles that it is genuinely exciting to see where Damnation Festival goes with who they book. Whilst Download pulls in the big hitters, and Bloodstock gives platform to bands to move up bills on a bigger scale, Damnation really represents the underground of heavy metal. Here are a few bands that we would love to see tread the boards at Damnation 2023.
Their nautically themed funeral doom is wondrously crushing. Always rich in narrative and awash with ambience, Ahab sail the seas of metal enrapturing people with their distinctive and unique sound. Their latest album, The Coral Tombs, is sure to be one of the heaviest albums of 2023, so it’s only right they should get the nod for Damnation 2023! Colossus Of The Liquid Graves was the lead track from the album. Check it out below.
VOID OF LIGHT (UK)
Void Of Light is a six-piece post-metal band from Glasgow. With a three guitarist, bass, drums, and vocals set up, they create a unique take on the post-metal genre, on their self-titled debut album. The band cites their main musical influences as including Cult Of Luna, Neurosis, and ISIS. While these influences come through on their debut album, this is also a band with their own definite sound, which sonically offers an immersive listening experience.
Boris is a truly enigmatic and experimental band. Over the course of their vast career, they have collaborated with a wide array of artists and produced music that ensures they cannot be placed in one particular box on the genre front. They are tagged with the ‘metal’ label but they are so much more than that. Yes, they can get loud; but they take the music to extremes in so many more ways.
DARKHER, the brainchild of Jayn Maiven, excel in creating unease and mystery in music. The Buried Storm was the second album and saw the hauntings continue. Already playing on bills across Europe and beyond, DARKHER would be a great addition to a bill that would bring diversity in sound. Those people that were wowed by Frayle at the 2022 festival would surely enjoy the spells cast by DARKHER.
MMXX (ITALY / AMERICA)
According to the band, MMXX was born during the initial lockdown of Rome and New York City, and incubated as the seasons passed. MMXX is the sound of global pandemic isolation. Andrea Chiodetti channelled inspiration for composition after composition in collaboration with Jesse Haff and Egan O’Rourke. A geographically, culturally, and stylistically diverse collection of celebrated vocalists and musicians layered in their own perspective, culminating in this eclectic compendium of music reflecting an experience sadly understood by all. What would be amazing about this booking would be the array of vocalists on the album; to have them perform the album with the range of vocalists would be something very special. Aaron Stainthorpe of My Dying Bride and Mikko Kotamaki of Swallow The Sun both make appearances. Check out the full lineup here.
Dauþuz are a black metal duo hailing from Germany. In the unique world of metal music, it feels like they stand alone as their music uses the theme of mining and the history of mining in Germany as the source material. Vom schwarzen Schmied, loosely translated as From The Black Smith, is the latest in a high quality string of releases from the pair, and follows on from their Grubenfall 1727 EP. Live shows from Dauþuz are rare so it would be a real surprise to see them on the bill.
Vitskär Süden (AMERICA)
Vitskär Süden has just released their second album; The Faceless King. It is one of high concept (with early presses arriving with a bespoke RPG module). Their stoner laden riffs and cosmic revelry make for a highly entertaining mix. They veer into prog territory here and there with plenty of heavy psych and cosmic horror. Have a read about the band’s albums here.
Mirage was one of the finest metal releases of 2022. Shrouded in obscurity with desolation in abundance, this Portuguese group brings an unbelievable sound. There is aggression aplenty in the sound but there is also a huge slice of beauty interspersed into the sound. GAEREA would be an absolute highlight of the festival if they were booked.
DUNE SEA (NORWAY)
Norwegian psych/stoner rockers Dune Sea have just returned with their third album, Orbital Distortion, which sees the trio delving further into space rock, taking off on a grand musical journey into outer space. The band have a full sound that enthralls and mystifies. They would certainly get the juices flowing for fans of cosmic rock in the same vein as Hawkwind.
DARKEST ERA (IRELAND)
After a long break, Darkest Era returned in 2022. The magic still works. Their latest album, Wither On The Vine, is a welcome reminder of a splendid band, but also of the fact that time and rest can bring fresh perspective and vigour. Hopefully, we won’t have to wait so long before the band reconvene and continue to produce more great music. To see the band on the bill at Damnation 2023 would be superb; they would bring a great vibe to proceedings with their blend of heavy metal. We were lucky to have the band share their thoughts on their new album here.
So there are a few thoughts on bands we’d love to see at Damnation 2023. This is obviously an opinion, and there are thousands of bands that could stake a claim.
Who would you like to see on the bill?
Keep an eye on the Damnation website for announcements and ticket sales.
See you in November!