An Emo & Black Metal Christmas

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Elend at Black Metal Christmas 12.21

Twas’ a busy weekend for the Omaha music scene. All the creatures were stirring, even the crypt fiends….

If you were looking for a traditional Christmas show this past weekend there were plenty to be found throughout the metro. If you were looking for something a little off the beaten path, well that was available too. We caught back to back shows 12/20 and 12/21 that strayed from the conventional Bing Crosby covers and “Jingle Bell Rock.”

First up was the legendary Emo Nite at the Waiting Room/Reverb on Friday (12/20). I had heard tales of Emo Nites past and was curious to see what the show was all about.

I arrived at the Waiting Room promptly before 9:00 pm only to find a huge line stretched almost all the way around the corner. Inside, there was a large screen playing 90s Christmas movie footage while modern sad-boy hip-hop played over the house speakers. I felt a little out of place as the majority of the crowd seemed like they were freshman in college. I stood listening to Juice Wrld and Lil Xan wondering when the Emo music would start.

While I waited for Emo classics like Fall Out Boy and My Chemical Romance I hopped over to the Reverb to catch my buddy Zac’s band A Summer Better Than Yours. Hailing from Lincoln, ASBTY plays pop-punk tunes with a flair for the nostalgic. With crunchy guitars and catchy three part harmonies, they kept the room rocking!

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A Summer Better Than Yours at Emo Nite 12.20

ASBTY‘s material is fun and relatable and covers a wide range of themes; falling in love, screaming your favorite songs with the windows down, being young and free. We all yearn for younger days and these guys help you bring those memories back in the best way possible. Give them a like on Facebook so you don’t miss their next show!

After ASBTY I went back to the Waiting Room and the party was in full swing. There were almost more people on stage than there were on the floor! I stuck around for a few songs, but I didn’t really get the appeal of listening to a DJ. I suppose it’s a little different since I experienced all of these bands at their height and some even before they broke. If I hadn’t been there, I suppose listening to a track with my friends would be the next best thing. Ultimately it just wasn’t for me so I said peace to my friends knowing I had another show the next night.

Saturday came around and I was ready for a Black Metal Christmas at the Lookout Lounge. With an 8:00 pm start and only 3 bands I was pumped to catch an awesome show and get home before midnight.

First up was the band Darkness. No, not “I Believe in a thing Called Love!” That’s The Darkness. This Darkness is a two piece band with guitars, keyboard, and drums. When I got in the room they were playing acoustic guitar ever so softly. I was expecting loud amps in the face so with the super quiet guitar I thought they were sound checking. I started talking to JJ from Slime&Grime and was promptly shushed. My bad, y’all.

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Darkness at Black Metal Christmas 12.21

As I listened intently to the humble guitars and softly sung lyrics I thought of Celtic forests. After the acoustic song came the brutal death metal everyone was looking for. The crushing guitars and ethereal keyboards set the tone for what would turn out to be an awesome show.

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Darkness is here to steal your soul!!!

The next band up Elend was sooooo killer. Like a heavier version of Coheed & Cambria, they had really uplifting melodies paired with aggressive drumming and shredding guitars. There were some difficulties with the vocal amp, but even that couldn’t stop the awesomeness. They had such a spacey sound, I just felt transported. Seriously, I can’t recommend this band enough. Keep an eye out for these guys. I can’t wait to catch them again!

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Elend tearing it up at Black Metal Christmas 12.21

Finally, it was time for the last band of our back to back adventure, the mighty Crypt Fiend! The room turned dark as the black metal doomsayers took the stage. The double bass drums kicked in and it was on!

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Crypt Fiend slays at Black Metal Christmas 12.21

Dudes started whipping their hair and throwing their fists. Some grizzly looking fellas raised their beers and nodded along to the sounds of the blackest of the black. The one-two punch from guitarists Stuart Fleming and Spencer Rosenberg had the walls shaking. We were in the pit of darkness and there was no escape, the fiends had been unleashed! For a good half hour Crypt Fiend fed their hungry fans grimy riffs and nasty breakdowns. This show was an absolute riot. If you like doomy, black, black metal then don’t skip the next time Crypt Fiend is playing!

A huge thanks to Spencer Rosenberg for putting together this show together. I had an awesome time and I can’t wait for A Black Metal Christmas 3!

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Photo galleries from both shows can be found below:

A Summer Better Than Yours – 12.20

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Elend – 12.21

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Crypt Fiend – 12.21

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