Distant live @Kulttempel, Oberhausen

17-05-2024
Redactie: Ruben Baar

Despite there being hundreds of active Dutch metal bands, there’s only those special few that get to perform outside of this tiny country. And tonight was one such occasion where we had to cross borders to see them live and in action. 

Down to a four-piece, the guys of Distant have been hard at work promoting their latest album ‘Heritage’. After a Dutch tour with For I Am King and an Eastern European stint with Suicide Silence, throughout the month of May they are now a supporting act for Austrian Death Machine and we were there at the kickoff for the first show of the tour in Oberhausen’s Kulttempel in Germany.

After the Danish opening band, Ghost Iris, finished their set the stage was prepared for the Dutch representatives. The only dressing this band needs is an Animal plushie on the high hat and a projected backdrop with the logo on a looping video of viral internet star Hasbulla clips. I can really appreciate the niche kind of humor Distant incorporates in how they present themselves, and that especially shows in the merchandise. Which is being worn by quite a few of the gathered crowd tonight.

From the opening notes we can tell this is going to be a high-energy set, people immediately break out into a moshpit. This didn’t happen during Ghost Iris, despite the singer specifically asking for one. Distant’s vocalist does get the bodies moving. ‘We are Distant from motherfucking Netherlands’ he opens the show. Let’s hope they remember.

With the second song ‘Hollow Eyes’ the train has truly left the station. Throughout the forty-minute set the band never lets up, it’s high-octane deathcore from start to finish.

Every song is characterized by the band’s distinctive sound, mostly consisting of the drummer slamming the snare so hard you’d think he broke the thing. But the real standout is the vocalist who switches screams, growls, snarls, and squeals on the fly in high tempo. He gets the crowd fired up with plenty of interaction and makes animated expressions to really give him some amazing stage presence. 

At the midpoint, we get a showcase of the newer songs from the latest album with ‘Born of Blood’ and the title-track ‘Heritage’. It shows a consistent quality in their work in the ten years since they started. No catchy hooks, but it’s impossible to stay still. Though there are still some guitar solos sprinkled in there for good measure. The German crowd is certainly impressed with the ever-growing pit that takes up most of the room in front of the stage. We’ve seen all the variations, with moshing, circle pit and wall of death. Some guys even spontaneously started rowing.  

After this extended onslaught, the band closes out with ‘Hellmouth’ and ‘The Broken Cross’. The temperature of the room has definitely gone up a few degrees and we can definitely say they did their country proud. We still have another band to go, but Distant has made the evening worthwhile already. 

Don’t worry about having to travel out of the country though, the tour hits the Effenaar in Eindhoven on May 24. Don’t sleep on it, it’s completely worth your time.   

You can find Distant on their website.



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