Necropolis Vol. II // New Cross Inn // London

Necropolis Vol. II – New Cross Inn – 25.06.2024

London’s most extreme underground festival is back once again!

The team at Necropolis have gathered the best lineup yet & curated Vol. II is the best showcase of the most brutal music within the death metal spectrum.

It might be an early 3 pm door but to give us the best wake-up call on this hot Saturday afternoon is Savage Realm. They are somewhat back from the dead & this is their first show in five years. This band of crusty hardcore-influenced death metal kicks things on perfectly. You wouldn’t think it had been such a long time for these guys but they rip through a killer set. The venue is packed for them already which is so great to see. Playing tracks from their 2016 Demo “Nocturnal Savagery” (which I highly recommend seeking) & even a sick Carnage cover was the perfect way to open today’s day of sonic violence.

Next up are the Scot’s PENNY COFFIN. Brandishing their unrelenting style of gore-soaked HM2-inspired death metal. This one was a feral set. The power this four-piece had was mammoth-like. Their E.P. from 2023 “Conscripted Morality” saw them shoot up within the scene last year & you could tell people were clamming to witness their set. One of the biggest takeaways from their set was the fantastic lead playing & the use of two vocalists. When I say these boys are hench, I mean a 300kg deadlift kind of hench.

Now for Boston, Mass-based Grotesqueries. It is a group I’ve been eagerly waiting to see since I fell in love with their 2023 album “Vile Crematory”.

Drummer & mastermind behind the band Yianni Tranxidis gathered a group of great musicians to round out a killer live band.

They managed to keep the brutality and have a little fun with the crowd which is always nice to hear. No one wants serious death metal 24/7. Their superb mix of old school swampy sounding death metal with some technical riffage sets them apart & they had a killer UK debt.

Bristol’s Cryptworm followed next & blew the roof off. Whenever I see these guys the band puts 110% into their live show & the crowd feel it. The pits for their set were non-stop, with tons of crowd surfing & smashing heads. Drummer Jamie Wintle is always mesmerising to watch. A few times I’ve seen these guys live I have just watched him through their set. He somewhat effortlessly bands the band’s music but is also so frantic & dynamic with the band’s music that it never gets boring & matches the riffing style the band are playing. The skyscraper that is vocalist & guitarist Tibor Hanyi’s crazy & unhinged performance is always a true pleasure to witness. His gurgling vocals in tandem with his furious riffing is just a match made in gory oozing heaven.

Czech demons Sněť bring the heavy-arse riffs with their set. Even with being a man down on their tour these guys really brought it. A perfect blend of Bolt Thrower feeling riffs with the crusty & heavy sound of Autopsy.

Vocalist Řád Zdechlin energetic stage presence really elevated there set more. Having so much fun, getting in the crowd’s face & making it even more brutal made their set one of the standouts for me.

Now bringing the blackened death metal edge to the evening,

Dublin’s Coscradh. Merging ancestral death metal & the dank atmosphere of black metal they really brought the theatrics to today’s show. Donning warpaint & even using a aztec death whistle they really set the tone with their chaotic almost war metal riffing style, with constant blasting in & multiple vocals creating a wall of anguish this might of been a pure attack on the senses but it was a unbelievable sight to behold.

The last two bands of the night are luckily making their UK debts, first the guttural & grotesque finnish group MORBIFIC.

These guys have crafted one of the rawest death metal sounds going right now. Their records have that layer of pulsating organic back to basics tone that many of the “OSDM” band miss & they managed to bring it to the live setting. Now it’s easy to make the Demilich feel compassion here, their sound might be truly similar but their chaotic, nonstop assault on your ears has that feel too. They merge all that the finnish & swedish older bands had but put it through an even dirtier blender & make for one of the most putrid bands i’ve seen live yet.

Closing out the night & making sure we don’t go home without a broken neck, the Danish kings of death metal right now HYPERDONTIA.

Getting to see these guys’ first ever London performance was spectacular. The energy they brought was top notch. Playing tracks from all over their discography & even a few new tracks from their upcoming album “Harvest of Malevolence” just shows how perverse the band gets each time they write new material. And it’s translated over so well in their live setting. Catchy, fast & barbaric there performance was. Vocalist & guitarist Mathias Friborg really kept the crowd engaged & the banter between songs was great. He looks so effortlessly cool playing these technical & syncopated riffs while singing, it truly baffles me. Closing out their set with the crowd baying for blood for one more song the band gave them one last track & totally killed it. The perfect closing for yet another fantastic Necropolis fest! Can’t wait for next year & another gigantic line up! Well done boys!

Review: Joseph Mitchell