Does this band and the studio album of this live recording still needs an introduction? Coming out of Norway in the Second Wave of Black Metal, De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas was released in 1993 after Varg Vikernes , the bassist player, was imprisoned for stabbing to death Euronymous (Oystein Aarseth) the guitarist. Mayhem became the most infamous band in the world. Prior to this, their previous vocalist Dead shot himself in the head and was the subject of this live record (not for the faint of hearts). So to record vocals on the album Attila Csihar of Tormentor was hired and is not credited for his duties. His vocals were far from the usual shrieks Black Metal was used to. Considered by many, including the writer of these lines, as one of the ultimate Black Metal albums of all time DMDS was never played entirely live before Black Christmas 2015.
The performance of December 15 2015 was recorded will now be released on DVD and double vinyl. As the sixth Live album by Mayhem, this is the one that is the most essential and a mandatory listen to any metalhead who ever foiled this Earth. The quality of the sound is excellent for a live recording and the sound of the crowd is almost muted which doesn’t gets annoying with the subsequent listens. On the drums, only member with Csihar to appear on the studio album, Hellhammer (Jan Bloomberg) does a no fault perfomance with great depth in the use of the toms and his expert velocity.
Sure, the first naysayer will state that it is the same songs only recorded live, but this is what it should be, no alterations or just better playing and a mature performance from a band of professionals who originally wanted to throw down every conventions and do it their own worst way possible. We are far from a band like the big mainstream M that took a five minutes song into a rabble of egos to a nearly eight to ten minutes one. My only complaint is the palpable cuts between the songs that makes it edited.
Finally, I personally think that the original material is synonymous with masterpiece and its rendition live is just perfect so I’m decerning a perfect score that doesn’t happen often if never on this blog and rankings. In fact, it is what you expect and nothing more nothing less.