Cult Of Fire / Saturnalia Temple / Shrines

Gorgeous goddess worship from Czech ritualists

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Kicking off a night of explorative underground metal, Texans ŠKAN [7], bring with them a solid line of blackened death and next-to-no stage presence, but the punk-hued drums meld nicely with the guttural vocals, which contrast sharply to London’s own SHRINES [7].

Guitars are edgy and the drums are fiery, yet it’s in frontman Sam Loynes that they find their niche, as he comes across all 50s lounge singer, but bringing an aura of intimidating authority to the band’s avant-garde tinged death. Sweden’s SATURNALIA TEMPLE [8] bring a touch of doom to proceedings, with a groove-laden set that mesmerises and impresses, despite it seeming like they’ve been on stage a little too long. The anticipation in the air for CULT OF FIRE [9] is all too apparent. Incense is burned, effigies are placed and scythes adorn the mic stand and when they finally appear, like xenomorphs from the East, the wait is justified.

Cult Of Fire dress down for the occasion

Cult Of Fire dress down for the occasion (Image credit: Tina Korhonen)

Preaching the lore of destruction to the enamoured crowd and offering supplication to Kali, the Hindu goddess that forms their backdrop, the band are powerful and utterly entrancing before a stunning Kali Ma closes their time in London on gorgeous sweeps of guitar and chants of divine power. Their ritualistic stance is true and heartfelt, and for Cult Of Fire, the goddess is all too real.