Friday, July 10, 2009

Roadtrip to Newport, Ky: Sunn O))) at the Southgate House

Posted By on Fri, Jul 10, 2009 at 2:46 PM

click to enlarge SunnO-001.jpg

An added perk to Sunn O))) recently releasing the best album of their career is that the band is actually touring the U.S. For the past handful of years, Sunn O))) shows largely have been relegated to random West Coast gigs or the occassional big-ass church in the middle of Norway gig. The "power ambient" duo have nearly wrapped up a Midwest romp (is it possible to romp in hooded robes?), finishing this Sunday in Newport, Ky., at the Southgate House. The Southern Lord blog has announced West Coast dates and promises more to follow in September. I can't recall a band on Southern Lord having played here in over three years, so a Nashville date strikes me as unlikely, and a road trip to the Cincinnati suburbs sounds oddly appealing.

The touring lineup includes Hungarian Attila Csihar on "invocations." Csihar's vocals have appeared on the last couple Sunn O))) releases, and even considering his performance at that Norwegian cathedral gig from inside a coffin, his most well-known vocal contribution is to Mayhem's De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas back in 1994--a band known less for its music than the crazy-ass shit its members did. Csihar replaced vocalist Dead who committed suicide and whose skull fragments were reportedly used for necklaces by guitarist Euronymous (bear with me--the pseudonyms get even more ridiculous). The guitarist was the first to discover the corpse, and his initial instinct was to take the photo that would later don the cover of a Mayhem live album. He's also rumored to have made a stew with Dead's brain.

But before the release of De Mysteriis, Euronymous was stabbed to death by Count Grishnakh, the church-torching sole member of Burzum and session bassist on De Mysteriis. If a record featuring both murderer and victim doesn't sound eerie enough, Csihar's performance registers as probably the creepiest vocals ever laid to tape.

Also, he wore this thing once:

click to enlarge Atilla_csihar_live_9_12_07_minehead-thumb-256x257.jpg

Who's pitching in gas money?

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