Live Review: Necropolis 2024


Live Review: Necropolis 2024
25th May 2024
Featuring: Hyperdontia, Coscradh, Morbific, Snet, Cryptworm, Penny Coffin, Grotesqueries
Words: Sam Jones

Savage Realm are the very first band on and it’s already filling upon the venue. Though it’s only half past three, the death metal is out in force as Savage Realm jettison bellowing vocals and a crashing drumming performance that’s bound to wake even the most lethargic individuals. If other bands on the bill are guttural, Savage Realm are far more visceral; their riffs and vocals complement each other as one bleeds into the other. Things are already on the move and it’s striking how much their drummer accomplishes with such a sparse kit too. Though the band are the first on, they’re still giving it their all. Yet the band surprise me, for their pacing is able to slow right down and give us something steadier; it’s ideal for headbanging. As they continue to play, it’s evident their songwriting possesses an iota of blackened flair, especially through their ripping playing style. Necropolis is already off to a necrotic start.

Grotesqueries, beginning as a one-man band, take to the stage with a bassist and two guitarists as they prepare to follow up Savage Realm’s opening salvo. Grotesqueries bring a more conventional death metal sound to Necropolis, albeit it’s something chasmic, subterranean, far below the depths of primordial earth. Band founder, Yianni Tranxidis, absolutely kills on the drums and though he’s striking away with rapid tenacity, there’s always the focus and effort required of he who’s playing the material he himself has written. We need remember every riff, every bassline, every trajectory the tracks take us, comes down to his direction and creation. The riffs too harness a warped atmosphere so while Grotesqueries play more conventional extreme metal, there’s a free falling style of evil going on too. Guitarists and bassist alike don’t stop playing for a second until their song is done as hands and fingers play frantically up and down fretboards. We’re two bands in, and the crowd is already getting the first pits underway. It’s a promising start.

Penny Coffin are the third band on but the crowd are well underway with the vibes. Pits break out, horns are in the air and you can tell the band are having a blast on stage. Bass drums batter out as blast beats fill the stifling air; the temperature climbs, as does the intensity of each succeeding band. There does seem to be an acutely thicker tone emanating from Penny Coffin though and it only aids the putrid atmosphere even as the sun rebels in the sky. Riffs fall with nuclear impact as Penny Coffin bring a noticeably crushing sound to the New Cross Inn, yet one can immediately identify the band’s concentration. Their sound is massive and consumes the room with ease yet their strength is never without control and you know they have things tightly wrapped up. It speaks volumes about Penny Coffin’s discipline as musicians that they can dish such monstrous music yet remain n control in at all times.

Cryptworm are the first of the major bands I was hyped to see and it’s amazing just what a wall of sound may be conjured by three people. With Cryptworm taking the stage, the truly crushing atmosphere of Necropolis sets in as the band throw guttural vocals and hideous guitar work at us. This isn’t your ripping affair, Cryptworm see to it things slow down enough you can feel your body putrefy. As a longtime fan, Cryptworm absolutely do not disappoint; I haven’t seen anyone throw down as vigorously with their guitar as I have with their vocalist. Their energy eggs the crowd on, now fully immersed in the day’s thralls and the dirtiest band yet command us to lose all sense of reason; the roughest pit today breaks out at the same time. What started as a pit escalates into a maelstrom as limbs and bodies entwine into a sickening fusion of physical matter. The band however are perfectly at ease with their devastating onslaught. For many this is one of the premier dates in the UK’s extreme metal calendar, for Cryptworm though, it’s simply Saturday. We’ve already reached a tipping point in the night where madness reigns and logic, order have been utterly abandoned. Cryptworm finish amidst a shower of applause.

Snet, arguably having travelled the furthest distance, from the Czech Republic, for Necropolis, gather a strong crowd even as they undergo their sound check, all the while delivering banter back and forth with the crowd. One of the first bands announced, Snet bring the malice in droves as they demonstrate why they belong on this lineup. In comparison to other acts, Snet are more abrasive as their punk influences bleed seamlessly into their songwriting; it’s also the first time in who knows how long I’ve seen a death metal incorporate a Les Paul guitar in death metal. Things may not be as cavernous, though Snet bring a ripping flavour to tonight’s affairs that others haven’t replicated. The room is absolutely rammed, I myself had to struggle to reclaim my spot with my friends and that’s not mentioning the many, many crowdsurfers Snet’s set summons.

Morbific’s bass could impregnate me. This is the culmination of all dirty death metal this evening as Morbific throw everything filthy at us. Like Snet and Hyperdontia, this is Morbific’s first time in the UK and it really shows; fans and the band alike are grateful to be here. Against the rest of the lineup, Morbific offer a noticeably more sludge, doom-laden soundscape; it may be the slowest paced set yet for Necropolis but that’s doesn’t stop people falling head over heels for them. The pit breaks out again but not out of ferocity, but for sheer joy; this is Morbific’s first time in the UK and we’re all enjoying our time spent with them. I even contemplate getting into the pit myself, but simply beholding the splay of bodies thrown up by the pit is enough for me to recoil back to my initial standing. The pit has only grown rowdier and as Morbific intensify their sonic assault and the pace climbs and the light dims. The day wanes and London truly becomes a graveyard. We’ve seen ripping tones, something visceral, more segmented sections, but Morbific bring a fervent, pungent aesthetic to the evening.

Coscradh are something different. Between every other band on the bill, Coscradh are arguably the wild card whereby they’re employing black metal into their onslaught. It’s also the evening’s first application of corpse paint too and we’re so far into the night, it doesn’t take much for the crowd to become totally enamoured by Coscradh’s enigmatic stage presence. Though we’re only one band away from Hyperdontia, Coscradh help break up the crushing vibe the last few bands have been establishing and thus they offer something a little different. But while Coscradh ooze the blackened aesthetic, the death metal is alive and well throughout their soundscape and the crowd is quickly on their side. But the band do climb to the more intense rafters of the evening, for their riffs and vocals and blast beats hold nothing back. They make it abundantly apparent the night is not yet done. Coscradh help bring the night’s madness to head as blast beats slaughter us and the band show little sign of slowing down their ferocious attack.

Hyperdontia. This is it. The reason I bought my ticket in the force place. I’ve waited years to see these Danish bands come over and Hyperdontia come over leading the charge. However the band are multi-national, sharing members across Denmark, Poland and Turkey so Hyperdontia are more than just another Danish extreme metal act. Hyperdontia come out as the climax to 2024’s Necropolis and they do not disappoint; with bellowing vocals, heinous blast beats and headbanging that would send even the most studious individuals nauseous, Hyperdontia come to the stage ready for battle, ready to top a night already decked with top-tier bands. I even brave it to the very front of the stage, where the pit is at its most ruthless to find, yes!, the pit is just as ruthless as it looks! But though the band are the last of the night, they show impressive restraint. While the night is drawing to its conclusion, Hyperdontia demonstrate all the professionalism and discipline their songwriting is renowned for, depicting the control their riffs entail for while their performance is inundated with power you always feel like they have everything under control and therefore you’re given free rein to go about their set as you please. Hyperdontia are grateful to be here on this current tour alongside Snet, they’ve been ripping it up across the UK the last few days. My hope Hyperdontia would in fact play material off their new album came to fruition as they began with “Death’s Embrace” and a few others. For their first run of UK shows, Hyperdontia have killed it and I can only hope there’s a next time because, with the pit and crowdsurfers being what they are, they’re a band that’s clearly sorely needed over here. Necropolis, once again, is on another home run. Here’s to next year.

Live Review: Necropolis 2024

For all the latest news, reviews, interviews across the heavy metal spectrum follow THE RAZORS'S EDGE on facebook, twitter and instagram.