What a great surprise to see the Russian Folk Metal band Arkona playing in Colombia!
The concert was meant to be at Bogotá Company Rock Bar, but it was changed to a club called Las Vegas Nevada.
I’ve never been to this venue before but I wouldn’t be surprised to learn that it was a strip-tease club before becoming a concert venue.
The opening band was a local band called Tremor.
They play atmospheric Death / Black Metal songs influenced by indigenous Amerindian culture.
There are many rhythm changes, alternating clear and guttural voice, as well as fast and slower musical parts.
The songs don't have many solos, but they do have several melodic passages.
They could benefit from a good light show and singer Cesar Franco is very communicative.
It was a good show and the audience responded well.
Their first record, Extreme Ancestral Ritual will be out soon.
Setlist Tremor – Teatro Las Vegas Nevada – Bogotá, – November 24 2013
01. Golden Age
02. Eternal Flames
05. The Hunting
Tremor on Facebook
César Franco – Vocals / Bass
Flavio Páez – Guitar
Luis Velásquez – Guitar
Sebastián Sanchez – Drums
At 8:50pm, only 15 minutes after the end of Tremor‘s show, the lights were shut down again and we started to hear Az’.
Then Vladimir got on stage with his bagpipe, playing the melody of Arkaim.
When the rest of the band came, the crowds started to scream… then they started to headbang… then to jump… and it didn’t take long until everyone was dancing!
There was truly festive atmosphere tonight, and it was contagious.
It didn’t matter that no one could understand the lyrics in Russian, what mattered is that everyone was here for a party.
It was the same on stage: Everyone in the band was giving it all.
When I looked at the dates of Arkona’s Pagan Worldwide Tour, I noticed that they were travelling long distances and playing concerts almost every day for 2 months... But they had no signs of being tired at all.
The sound is a delicate matter for a band like Arkona that uses uncommon instruments in Metal, like bagpipes or flutes, but fortunately everything sounded great from the beginning.
Each band member was wearing traditional Russian clothes, and Masha Scream added a wolf skin as a scarf.
I guess it’s a fake one, since I don’t think she could have crossed so many borders with a real one.
The voice of that girl is amazing. It can be soft, hard, melodic and even guttural.
Furthermore, she learnt a couple of words in Spanish: She saluted the crowds with a gentle Buenas Noches! and greeted the people every now and then with a Gracias Amigos!
Arkona is not a band like any other, so instead of a drum solo, we had an unusual bagpipe solo.
But Vladimir Reshetnikov not only brought a bagpipe, he also had a set of four different flutes that he used according to the needs of each song.
The atmosphere they created with this was amazing, particularly in songs like Ot Serdtsa k Nebu, Arkona, Slav'sja, Rus'! and the great Stenka na Stenku.
By the way, Masha tried to make a wall of death on that song, but it failed.
The two blocks were ready to charge on each other but some people started to dance in the middle, so instead of crushing them, everyone joined the dance.
The band left the stage briefly and came back for the encore, a great version of Kupala i Kostroma, so we all could enjoy five more minutes of Pagan Russian Metal!
The show ended at 10:05pm. It was short, as it lasted only for 1hour and 15 minutes, but it was so good!
The band definitely left a great impression on their Colombian fans, and many people rushed to
to the merchandising stall to buy T-shirts and rare Russian CDs.
It was an intimate concert, in front of some 200 crazy Metal fans that enjoyed every minute of it.
It is exceptional for a Russian Metal band to come as far as South America, but I’m really glad that Arkona made it.
This really is a pioneering tour.
I hope their visit will set the way for more Russian bands to perform here in the future, as well as for Pagan or Folk Metal.
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Setlist Arkona – Teatro Las Vegas Nevada – Bogotá, – November 24 2013
От Серца к Небу
Ot Serdtsa k Nebu
Гой, Роде, Гой!
Goi, Rode, Goi!
06. Славься, Русь!
08. Катится Коло
—— Bagpipe Solo ——
09. По сырой земле
Po Syroi Zemle
Стенка на стенку
Stenka na Stenku
Купала и Кострома
Kupala i Kostroma
Arkona CDs at Amazon.com
Arkona iTunes downloads
Arkona on Flickr
Masha "Scream" Arkhipova – Vocals / Tambourine
Sergey "Lazar" Atrashkevich – Guitars
Vladimir "Wolf" Reshetnikov – Flutes / Bagpipes
Ruslan "Kniaz" – Bass
Vlad "Artist" Sokolov – Drums