Copenhell’s Grand Finale: A Legendary Metal Odyssey

On the fourth and final day of Copenhell in Copenhagen, the apocalyptic atmosphere at the industrial site of Refshaleøen reached a new peak. After three days of deafening riffs, crushing beats, and unforgettable performances, the crowd was ready for one last burst of pure energy. This final day promised to be a spectacle, filled with headliners who have firmly earned their place in the metal elite. It was time to give it all one more time, in a cathartic celebration of the strength and camaraderie that define the metal community. Copenhell would end with a resounding bang, a fitting farewell to a legendary festival weekend.

Foto’s (c) Morten Holmsgaard Kristensen

MIMI BARKS: Rebellious, intense girl power!

Mimi Barks is known for her bold fusion of trap metal, doom, and hardcore elements, laced with rap, hip-hop and a whole lot of synth. And it is like watching a whole production, despite there being only her, a DJ and the drummer on stage. She seems to be the kind of artist who focuses on the overall vibe of the show more than on the individual technicalities that many metal bands do. Why spend hours upon hours rehearsing a guitar solo, when you can achieve the same thing by pressing a button, and focusing that energy on other parts? That isn’t to say Mimi Barks lacks in musical talent, she takes over for the drummer at one point, and gives one hell of a drum solo, too much applause from the audience.

Mimi Barks’ vocal delivery is characterized by an intense energy, with lots of guttural screams and rapid-fire rap. Her performance on stage is filled with anger-filled, provocative energy, reminiscent of old-school punk bands. But, in the end, it was an unforgiving task, opening the last day of the festival.

It had rained quite a bit through the night, so being placed at the Gehenna stage where the trees and woodchips made everything extra damp, did not do wonders for the attendance. The place was barely half full, and people seemed spent and tired. Which also resulted in a pretty lacklustre circlepit. Overall, I don’t in any way regret seeing Mimi Barks perform, and in the right setting, I think she would make for an awesome performance.

SIAMESE: Talented and humble!

Siamese are known for their effortless blending of genres. Their music often features heavy guitar riffs and powerful drum patterns characteristic of metal and post-hardcore, intertwined with electronic elements. This fusion creates a dynamic and engaging sound. The music fuses elements of post-hardcore, progressive metal, and electronic, creating a sound that is both unique and accessible.

I first met lead singer and frontman, Mirza Radonjica, years ago at a concert in Aalborg, Jutland, on a much smaller stage. And even back then he brought the same level of enthusiasm and professionalism, that he brings on stage now at Copenhell. He brings a versatile vocal range that can shift from clean and melodic, to almost deathcore-like screams. He also isn’t afraid to bring other artists in as guest performers, which was also the case this year. It’s always nice when someone talented isn’t also a glory hog.

The band’s sound is a mix of many different elements, something that is getting more prevalent in later years, instead of sticking to one genre religiously. And while some bands make an electronic sound the main theme of their musical style, Siamese use it to supplement their rock and metal sound instead which is still very much in focus, and it makes it much more palatable to the average metalhead… and then they add some Gwen Stefani and Eminem.

The crowd interaction is also a big part of the show, and Mirza makes the crowd sing along and tells them how grateful they all are to finally be there on stage. This isn’t just another show for them, but something that they’ve worked towards. Siamese isn’t just an atmospheric and hard-hitting sound, they’re also very genuine and care about the metal scene a great deal.

CRYPTA: The four horsewomen of the apocalypse!

Crypta was formed in 2019, by former Nervosa member Fernanda Lira, who is still just amazing on stage with her new ensemble. The sound is decidedly death metal, but I dare say Lira has more than enough vocal range that she could easily transition to the black metal scene as well. The music from these 4 black leather-wearing young ladies, is incredibly technically proficient, complex and intricate, both on guitar, drums and bass, and draws influence from both old-school and newer death metal bands.

You get the feeling that they’re proud and happy to be there on stage, and God knows it can be a challenge for women to earn their seat at the table in the rock and metal world. But these four sure as hell didn’t get there by coincidence.

The only critique I can think of is a small lack of variation. While what they do, they do incredibly well, I would have liked to have seen their skills come to show in different ways also. I have no doubt though, that they’ll reach a point where they’re comfortable with a little more experimentation, and when they do, I know it’ll be done just as thoroughly.

ACCEPT: Consummate pros still going strong!

When a band tells you they just flew in under 2 hours ago, and then continues to play as if they’ve played this particular stage a million times before, you know you’re dealing with real pros. And that’s exactly what Accept is.

It’s another of the old legends from the 70’s, still living the dream all these years after, delivering banging guitar solos, and having enough of a catalogue of songs that they can fill the entire show with hit after hit. And we got some real catchy ones too, such as “Metal Heart”, “Pandemic”, and of course “Balls to the wall”, which they’re possibly the most well-known for.

There isn’t much to say about the Accept classic heavy metal style that people don’t already know or that hasn’t been said years ago. The music is catchy and easy to sing along to, with great hooks, sharp melodic vocals and masterful guitar riffs. It’s always a great time with these guys, and we hope they’ll be playing for years to come and keep adapting their style and writing more songs about rebellion, war and social issues!

BODY COUNT: Where hip-hop meets metal

I’ll start by admitting, that before this I didn’t even know Ice-T had a metal band, so I was excited to see these guys and their mix of hip-hop and metal. And I was thoroughly impressed by the entire performance. They start the show by playing Slayer’s “Raining Blood” before they go on to play their hits from the different albums they’ve put out since they formed back in 1990. And apparently, I was the only one living in ignorance because the crowd that gathered for the show is among the biggest I’ve seen at the festival.

Musically, the metal side takes a lot of inspiration from the old-school thrash and punk scene, and the hip-hop of it all, shows in the lyrics. The band didn’t think that the imaginary horrors that metal songs are often about were nearly as scary as the real live horrors they saw from day to day, and still do. So their lyrics became about addressing current societal issues instead, like gang violence, corruption and apparently how men these days are starting to grow vaginas. Ice-T pulled no punches when addressing the ongoing feminization of men, and statements like ‘The opposite of toxic masculinity are called femininity. You bitches were born toxic’ sequences into the song “Manslaughter”. It also made some of the ladies in the crowd get up and leave, to get on the festival messageboards.

Throughout the show, they also tried out a few songs from their new album, like “Merciless”, based on the movie The Purge, about the joys of killing anyone you want, and “Psychopath”. Ice-T is of course used to being in front of an audience and always has a segue way into the next song. Giving us such words of wisdom as ’no matter your race or religion, if you’re poor, no lives matter’ before playing “No lives matter”.

Despite his message about femininity being toxic, he still brought his 8-year-old, adorable, daughter Chanel on stage to be part of the show, she even got to have the very last words of the concert in the end. His grown-up son Little Ice is also part of the band, and has a great stage presence just like his father, although in a very different way. He even gets out and crowd-surfs during one of their songs

The show officially ends with the song “Cop Killer”, but they play a few more after his ’virtual encore’, where he just turns around so he won’t have to waste time walking off stage and have people demand him back. So the final song becomes “This Is Why We Ride”, about gang life and revenge, one of their more soulful and reflective tracks, and it’s a high note to go out on. Despite his perhaps controversial statements, the show was great, and I highly recommend them to anyone who likes both hip-hop and metal and would like to see them overlap masterfully.

Photo’s (c) Morten Holmsgaard Kristensen

To share this article:

Don't forget to follow our Spotify Playlist: