Swedish heavy metal band Avatar brought all the camp and drama it’s known for to San Francisco last week, thrilling the audience packing The Warfield. Despite being the support act for Babymetal, Avatar captivated the crowd from the moment the members set foot on the stage.
Avatar performs under a theme of a demented carnival, with each member in stylized uniforms (even the sound tech wore a top hat). Lead singer Johannes Eckerström dressed as a ring leader of his twisted circus, complete with a full face of clown makeup. Their set followed suit with the same delightfully absurd energy. Synchronized head bangs (emphasized by each member’s incredibly long hair, of course), grotesquely contorted faces, and altogether manic energy captured the crowd’s attention.
Despite the screams of death and destruction, Avatar’s set was far from a conventional metal show. Eckerström’s onstage spirit and charisma was more than enough to carry the performance, and even made his trombone solo seem hardly out of place. As it was the final stop on Avatar’s tour, the band had a unique request for the audience. Eckerström explained that the band was recording a new album, and wanted audio of the crowd yelling “SILENCE!” for a new song. They happily obliged. This was one final testament to Avatar’s ability to bewitch their audience, no matter who that might be.
Check out a gallery of Avatar’s set below: