Photos: Ali En
Wolves in the Throne Room & Marissa Nadler – VENUE, Vancouver, BC
On June 18th, 2017, I had the honor of witnessing Wolves in the Throne Room for the second time in a week. The Thursday before, Sean and I were in Seattle for the opening night of the first Northwest Terror Fest, where WITTR closed out the night in a packed room thick with fog and burning sage. I had never seen them live before that night. In fact – I’ll admit it – I didn’t understand the hype surrounding this band at all. I liked their music, but the sort of cult following they’d developed over the years didn’t resonate with me. All that changed once I’d witnessed their live set that night in Seattle.
A couple of days later, I found myself in a much more intimate room with far fewer people in attendance. Marissa Nadler was onstage, captivating the crowd with her ethereal voice. Just she and her guitar, mesmerizingly simple – none of us could look away. One of the highlights of her set for me was her cover of Danzig’s “Blood and Tears,” which she turned into a melancholic, haunting ballad that suited Danzig’s lyrics more than his Elvis-style delivery on the original. It was an intimate set; she was nervous and honest with the audience, and we felt like we were invested in her performance. It was beautiful.
More fog rolled in, people crowded closer, and with a ceremonial lighting of sage, Wolves in the Throne Room entered the stage. Their sound enveloped everything in the room, and once again I was held rooted in place by the powerful energies they create with sound. They are able to conjure spirits and channel ley lines with their music – anyone who has been in their live presence knows I’m not exaggerating. Their drummer for this tour, Trevor Deschryver, brought another level of beauty to WITTR’s music. I was lucky enough to have also seen Trevor perform with Lycus at NWTF the prior week, and seeing him three times in a week solidified him as one of my favorite drummers doing it right now. WITTR was breathtaking, almost hypnotic. I won’t miss another chance to see them live.