Sargeist is made up of two words; Sarg (coffin), and Geist (spirit), taking their name from Rotting Christ’s The Old Coffin Spirit.
Sargeist can also be defined as; a pretty damn good Finnish black metal band.
On July 12, 2018, Sargeist played the Brooklyn Bazaar in New York. A venue almost filled to capacity at 250 people. We arrived a bit late due to traffic, and because we were traveling from Philadelphia. It’s about an hour and forty minutes without traffic, so we ended up missing the first two bands; Ordeals, a local band from New York, and Wayfarer of Colorado.
We had arrived as Sargeist was about to hit the stage. This show was to be their only show on the East Coast, and so we knew we had to see them. I had seen Sargeist three times; twice at Maryland Deathfest (2012 and 2017) and again at the Martyrdoom Festival in 2014), but never had I seen them headline, so this was a special show.
It was already hot when we arrived into the venue, and with all the people inside, it only got worse-far from what one would think of when it comes to Finnish weather. However, the heat was not much of a problem once they hit the stage.
Dressed in all black, the masters of Finnish black metal, in all their satanic and anti-christian values, roared furiously as they began their set with one of their most famous songs; Let The Devil In. Excitement quickly filled the venue, the tiny venue, as people pushed their way near the stage and moshed through the song, fist pumping and shouting “Let The Devil In, Let The Devil In” along with vocalist Profundus.
I’ll admit, I’m not the biggest black metal fan, I prefer my black metal mixed either with melodic or symphonic elements; Emperor and Dissection especially come to mind when I think of my favorites, but there’s something very special about Finnish black metal. The likes of Sargeist, Horna, White Death, Behexen, Baptism, Beherit, mixing their black metal with a number of different styles, enough to get my attention.
Empire Of Suffering was next, going straight into this song following Let The Devil In, this is the song that comes to my mind when I think of Sargeist, this is the song that I tell everyone to listen to, when they want to know what the band is like. And, no bias, it’s my favorite of theirs, once again mixing black metal with melodic guitar tones that is unapologetically Finnish.
Each and every song was as fast, as brutal, as dark as the next, enough to get the entire crowd screaming and banging their heads. Despite the size of the venue, we moshed our hearts out and sang along with every track, Sargeist’s energy resonating off the entranced crowd. We even got a new song for all our troubles of showing up on a Thursday night 😉
And speaking of luck, did I mention that this was one of only three US shows? Lucky, indeed.
By the time you are reading this, Sargeist has come and left, not without a bit of controversy in form of a stolen ritual carpet, which has since been returned-however, their presence was sure felt with such a tiny tour. We definitely enjoyed the show, and we’re looking forward to seeing them again!
Setlist as follows:
- Let the Devil In
- Empire of Suffering
- In Charnel Dreams
- As Darkness Tears the World Apart
- The Bosom of Wisdom
- The Unspoken Ones
- Twilight Breath of Satan
- Satanic Black Devotion
- The Shunned Angel
- Returning to Misery & Comfort