BAEST was one of the first bands and performances I saw last year when I arrived in Aarhus. That happened to be the following day after Placebo’s concert which didn’t happen, so I remember being in the need of something to pick me up. I figured, if some death metal cannot do the job, nothing can. I don’t remember much from the concert, since it was a while ago, yet I do remember asking my friend “who are these guys” few seconds into BAEST’s performance, which deemed the strongest one that night. My friend bought their T-shirt and I figured I too should get it at some point.
And so I did, in the summer of 2017, as I met 4 of the 5 beasts, Simon, Svend, Lasse and Mattias at Copenhell, a day before their first-ever festival gig and several days until their performance at Roskilde. The guys appeared sizzling with excitement, as they described the experience of landing spots at major Danish summer events as insanely intense. Which makes absolute sense having in mind that BAEST were established only 2 years ago. As it turns out, the musicians might have discovered a formula that actually works – both in mindset and delivery – to get the crowd hooked and the best venues booked.
“If in 3 years from now we’re still playing in small local venues, we’re going to quit…
… but if we achieve more, we’re gonna give it all we can” – this sort of ambition might come off as suspiciously maximalist for many young bands out there, but as it comes to BAEST, it does sound perfectly reasonable. For not only do they know how to talk the talk, but they also deliver. Deliver in a way that makes you want to come back. Both passion and technique are loud and clear in BAEST‘s shows, as probably everyone who’s been a part of the experience would agree.
We were told that festivals won’t book bands that don’t have an album, but we landed the 2 best festivals in Denmark. So for those guys – fuck you!
So far BAEST have released a demo and an EP and are currently recording their debut full-length album. Both of the current releases indicate a serious effort to demand for a significant presence in Scandinavian, and, potentially, worldwide death metal market. If you give Marie Magdalene and the demo a shot, you might get an idea why the band is climbing the ladder of success so rapidly in Denmark. Both releases are polished and well executed, yet maintaining the roughness and texture of the classical sound.
Death metal is cool, outrageous. It will never die because it has a nerve, it’s immortal. If you go fast, it’s awesome, if you go slow, it’s awesome, if you growl, it’s awesome, if you scream, it’s awesome. Its fucking awesome all the way.
Although BAEST‘s style in itself might not come off as something entirely new, as already noted by some reviewers, we’re not here to pinpoint references, are we? Also, the band is more than aware about the direction they’re taking. According to the musicians, they spotted a niche in Denmark for vintage death metal which have been their scene of interest since high school. Classical death metal in their view has been experiencing a rise in past few years, along with everything vintage in music, art or fashion.
At the end of the day, it’s clear what BAEST stand for, which is well executed old-school-inspired, thrash induced death metal bursting with confidence, nerve and potency. Creativity needs time to develop, and it does look like BAEST currently have what it takes to efficiently build upon what they’ve already achieved and hopefully grow into their own unique element in the long run.
Hard work, dedication and spirits of dead goats
There is a simple rule that all productive musicians share: you will never deliver a good party without breaking sweat beforehand. Which reminds us to really appreciate the artists who care about the quality of their music enough to put their professional foot forward.
“If you work hard, you’re gonna have fun. If you’re just having fun from the beginning, it’s not gonna be fun in the long run.”
– BAEST on rehearsing their Copenhell setlist 8 times
BAEST put a strong emphasis on having a goal as a band, which has to always be discussed inside the group. So what is the ultimate goal for the Aarhusians who consider themselves the best Danish live act at the moment? World domination, of course. Is it realistic? Well, the guys mentioned something about digging up some goat corpses and their spirits supporting them ever since. Knowing how powerful deals with goats can be, we might as well start preparing for the domination of the Baestful five.
BAEST – in short:
Albums: Marie Magdalene EP (October 1, 2016 ), Demo (April 1, 2016 ), Crosswhore (2017)
Members: Simon Olsen (vocals), Svend Karlsson (guitar), Lasse Revsbech (guitar), Mattias Melchiorsen (bass), Sebastian Abildsten (drums)
Genre: death metal
Record label: Goatboil Records