Underground For the Masses Day I REVIEW : a journey through shadows, a celebration of dark music and rebellion...

Hear, hear, ladies, gents and otter friends, gather ’round for a tale of dark delights and underground experiences!

The long-awaited moment finally arrived, and the ritual began as promised. The debut day of Underground For The Masses, in its infancy yet bursting for its first grasp of air, unfolded in Quantic Bucharest just yesterday, on April 5th.

Indeed, it was a Herculean effort, fueled by sweat, determination, and more than a few cups of coffee, to breathe life into this vision. Yet, beyond the logistics and the toil, there was something more profound at play—it fulfilled a personal wish, a burning desire that resided deep within each member of the crew.

Dare we proclaim it? This is not just any festival—it stands alone as the first and only 100% dedicated gathering of its kind in Bucharest. And by “dedicated,” we mean it’s a celebration of all things black metal, through and through.

And now, my friends, let us venture forth into the depths of darkness. This journey commenced yesterday at the stroke of 18:00, as the doors swung wide open to welcome us into the abyss.

As the saying goes, no epic tale begins with a mere glass of water, and ours is no exception. What better way to kick off the madness than with Whiskey Ritual?

Taking the stage promptly at 7:00 PM, they unleashed a torrent of energy that gathered the crowd for the ritual. For many, the discovery of these Italian maniacs was a delightful surprise, with their devilish performance and subtle nods to the likes of GG Allin adding an extra layer of intrigue.

Their straightforward approach, tinged with just a hint of punk attitude, made it impossible to neatly categorize—a true rebellion against labels, yet do not be tricked because they do wear everything in BLACK!

With an encore that left the audience clamoring for more, Whiskey Ritual concluded their set with their earlier release, ensuring their performance would be the talk of the night for hours to come.

After a well-deserved break for a speedy refill and some cherished reunions in between friends, Sunken took the stage right on schedule around 20:00, shifting us towards the atmospheric realms of a uniquely blended black metal experience, infused with elements of post-black.

Their performance left a subconscious mark, evoking the sensation that every note was purposeful, every chord carefully chosen. Nothing was left to chance; there was no room for generic in the sound they conjured here. Sunken‘s show emanated from both mind and spirit, a testament to their youthful yet remarkable talent. In just a few tunes, they claimed the stage as their own, inviting the audience in a hypnotic journey through their sonic landscape.

The crowd, asked for more as Sunken gracefully exited the stage. And more they received, as the next act on the menu, Helleruin, took their place.

Helleruin, a band long-awaited and eagerly anticipated, delivered an electrifying performance that was nothing short of surprising. For many felt like a revelation to witness the seamless transition from personal recordings spined at home to the authentic energy of their live performance. The vocals, a fusion of boundless energy and a rebellious disdain for convention resonated with the crowd on a primal level.

Mesmerized, the audience found itself swept in a mixture of sound and act, as Hellruin shifted from atmospheric rhythms to blasts of fury. It was a show to behold, a performance that left many spellbound until the very end, captivated by everything Helleruin had to offer on stage, right down to their bones.

As the clock struck 22:00, the stage was claimed by Serpents Oath, offering to the audience a new wave of darkness and mysticism. Their “Revelation” unfolded before the crowd, surrendering it with their burning sound.

With relentless tremolo picking, delirious guitar solos, and blast beats, Serpents Oath wove a tapestry of sound that tantalized both the dancing spirit and the wandering soul. It was a performance that conjured vivid imagination of abyssal depths and arcane rituals.

Dark and mystical, their music unfurled like a macabre incantation, as their own testament to the power of black metal, delivered in a ritualistic manner, rare to behold.

After a brief interlude for the audience to catch their breath, Thy Light graced the stage around 23:00, once again shifting the atmospheric currents.

Ritualistic and shrouded in hooded mystique, they tapped into a different facet of the crowd—the emotional core. Their setlist, drenched in melancholy, took on a more melodic and gloomy tone for the night. With an ambient and low-key approach, they crafted a soundscape that stirred sentiment and nostalgia in equal measure.

Their performance wasn’t just music; it was a journey through the depths of the soul, guided by mid-tempo rhythms and haunting melodies. Each note carried the audience deeper into the abyss, exposing the dark recesses of their own consciousness. It was a show that evoked profound emotions, leaving souls adrift in a sea of melancholic reflection.

And now, for the grand finale—but fear not, for this is not the end. Mork emerged onto the stage to add the final flourish to our night of sonic exploration.

Returning to a more traditional approach, where black metal reigns supreme, Mork erupted onto the stage with an inferno of blasts and searing riffs. The show was a relentless onslaught that mingled boldness, aggression, and melancholy in equal measure.

They navigated the introspective ambience with a furious yet melodic fervor, staying true to the roots of the genre while carving out their own unique sound. It was madness tempered with sanity, a delicate balance that defined their performance and left an indelible mark on the night.

Of course, the night wouldn’t be complete without a stroll through the variety of merch available, and to everyone’s delight, an impromptu signing session from Thy Light added an extra layer of excitement.

A special nod must be given to the impeccable sound and lighting that enveloped the entire venue, setting the stage for an unforgettable experience. It’s no small feat to achieve perfection in managing such a diverse range of sonic and visual landscapes, but the crew behind the scenes pulled it off with finesse, ensuring that every aspect of the night was a blast.

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