Update: To help slow the spread of COVID-19, this show has been postponed. Contact point of purchase for refund or exchange information.
Colorado three-piece Velnias have always had their own distinctive blend of black, progressive, and folk metal: it builds slowly, and they give it a lot of room to breathe. They took their name from a primal Baltic forest god, and they’re very fond of passages of braided, interlaced clean guitar that verge on space metal. After making ripples with 2012’s RuneEater and 2016’s Absolution, the group are continuing their rocky path through misty mountains on their upcoming third album, Scion of Aether (out March 27 on Eisenwald). With a moody, cerebral sound that values atmosphere over dirty raw power, Velnias aren’t a band to go to if you require constant pummeling, but they could certainly provide it if they wanted—the excellent drumming often patters beneath the quiet bits like a lurking threat. Depending on your need for speed or your tolerance for rambling indulgence, Velnias might have a little too much restraint or not enough, but when they do unleash the dogs of war (as in the tightly coiled riffs of 15-minute closer “Oblivion Horizon—Null Terminus”), the payoff comes in a volcanic eruption. The band play Chicago just weeks before they head off on a European tour (knock on wood), and they’re sharing the bill with two great locals: sludgy but explosive four-piece Pale Horseman and atmospheric black-metal band Vukari, whose third full-length, last fall’s Aevum, brings all the wall-slamming fury you could want. v