ASSEMBLEIA DO METAL 2021, 18 December, Pindelo dos Milagres (Viseu)


Finally a Heavy Metal festival, almost two years after the last one, precisely the Assembleia do Metal 2019. So it was with some anxiety coming back to Pindelo dos Milagres, the heaviest Portuguese Village.

A few days before the festival, the first bad news: the revamped Gothic Metal band Black Widows could not play. To me that was one of the highlights of the show, having seen the ladies opening for King Diamond twenty years ago. The replacement was Downfall of Mankind, that plays Symphonic Deathcore.

On the 18th, me, two of the bands and several other friends, took the Milagre Metaleiro bus in Lisbon to travel to Pindelo, with two stops to have lunch and collect more metalheads. During the voyage, one more bad news, the headliners Angelus Apatrida unfortunately could not come. So, I'm not going to see my favorite Thrash masters that day. Arrived to Pindelo some hours before the shows, enough time to chat while waiting the beginning.

The last-minute addition DOWNFALL OF MANKIND opened the festival. As grindcore tells me nothing, I just had a minor curiosity in seeing a national band that includes two friends, has many supporters and is well known also outside Portugal. They delivered a very professional show, tecnically impeccable and the vocalist Lucas is impressive. A dozen people started mosh including a couple hillbillies that don't know how to do it. Just got some pics and went outside, despite the cold. Took the opportunity to know and chat with some of the Xeque-Mate members, the fathers of Portuguese Heavy Metal and a missed act in my Metal history.

The Melodic Death Thrashers from Algarve SHADOWMARE were next. Vocalist João Infante wearing a Santa Claus cap was the first and unique sign in all festival that Christmas is coming ☺ All setlist was based on their unique 2019 album Shades of the Untold and the show was excellent. After the show I got some time to photos and signing stuff.

I didn't know THE CHAPTER very well, normally I don't listen to Doom, but it turned a good live surprise. They play a Melodic Doom Gothic quite interesting and professional. Most songs were from their 2017 album but also some from a coming album next year, for sure I will look for it.

CRIMSON BRIDGE is a new Melodic Death quartet, formed in 2016, still unsigned, the first album was released this year. Their members look quite young, but the gig was quite good. Some initial technical problems reduced their setlist, the organization was quite tight with the schedule.

I saw SPEEDEMON opening for Crystal Viper a couple years ago, so no surprise at all with their addictive Speed Thrash. Also here the setlist was shorten but ending perfectly with Words of Fire

So, with the absence of Angelus Apatrida, DIABULUS IN MUSICA became the headliners. This Spanish Symphonic band was playing for the first time in Portugal and delivered a hell of a show. Zuberoa soon conquered the audience, helped by his husband Gorka on keyboards. The setlist was obviously based on the last Euphonic Entropy with the first four songs plus Otoi and One Step Higher, but the other albums, except the first one, were not forgotten. Speaking with them after the show, they liked their first show in Portugal and some time for photos and autographs.

By last TVMVLO. And the second band that tells me nothing with their Death Metal. Just saw around 10 minutes, took a few pics and went to the bus to rest.

During the gigs breaks, two news: the missing band for Ressurreição do Metal (16th April) is Ramp, one of our historical Metal bands that started in 1989, non active for many years (last album in 2009). The other news is about Angelus Apatrida. The organization book a new date for the day before Ressurreição (15th April) with Angelus Apatrida and more bands to announce. It called it Assembleia do Metal Part 2 and the Assembleia ticket holders will have free admission.

After Tvmvlo, Downfall of Mankind made a last minute encore, I could hear from the bus. I don't know the reason, didn't seem to me their set was shorter.

Missed the bands order, had to ask all the time the organization or the bands.
Compared with other events on the same venue, it seemed to me that the sound has improved, but lights stll revealed some strange decisions. Also I didn't understand why there was a screen behind the first three bands showing what everybody is seeing, with some delay. Glad someone corrected that.

Despite the minor faults, it was an excellent event, kudos for the organization in maintaining the flame, specially with all the current health issues. The 15th and 16th April we'll be back, it's forbidden to miss Angelus Apatrida, Aephanemer and many others!

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