Sweden’s Sacramentum Brings Everflaming Northern Darkness, Crossspitter, and Organ Trail to Boggs

Written by Scott Belzer | August 16th, 2023

The Kingdom of Sweden. A Nordic and scenic land of mountains, forests, and lakes. Home to 10.5 million souls. Stockholm. Zlatan Ibrahimović

It’s also home to some of the biggest names in heavy music (or music in general if you’re an ABBA fan (and who isn’t)). Sweden’s output is so impressive that it’s garnered academic attention. At least one great metal band has emerged from Sweden since the late 70s and early 80s, spanning every genre of metal and every “wave” that has hit our shore.

ABBA who are not at all Sacramentum, Credit Wolfgang "Bubi" Helleman
ABBA, who are not at all Sacramentum. Photo Credit Wolfgang “Bubi” Helleman

Sacramentum is one of those bands. Blasting listeners with atmospheric, melodic riffs amid chaotic blast beats and a flowy foundation, Sacramentum scratches that nasty itch between “black metal” and “melodic death metal.” The band released three near-perfect examples of the sub-sub-genre in the mid-90s, including the masterpiece Far Away from the Sun, alongside such giants as Dissection and At the Gates (who also happen to be fellow Swedes!). 

Fans of those bands and Sacramentum will know just how much of a journey this music can be. It’s dark yet beautiful. It’s well-orchestrated yet brutal. It takes cues from both Bathory and Iron Maiden, combining the best elements from both (extreme atmosphere and virtuosic musicianship) into one cohesive package. Sacramentum’s lyrics match the overall flow and narrative of the music; while soaring melodies and ever-changing drumbeats guide you through a wide array of tempos, emotions, and moods, vocalist Nisse Karlén describes void-like dreamscapes, dark nights, divine dimensions, and oceans of blackness. It ain’t called Close to the Sun, damn it, and the music sounds exactly like this amazing Sacramentum album cover

I saved you a click but go listen to it anyway

Just guessing here, but it seems like those Swedes really think their country is quite pretty—but they still wanna rock and be brutal. So they make music expressing just that (ABBA being an exception, obviously—they just want to dance). 

As part of the Everflaming Northern Darkness Tour across the United States, Sacramentum is playing Bogg’s Social & Supply on Wednesday, August 23 with support from Crossspitter and Organ Trail.

Crossspitter at Mass Destruction Metal Fest, Photo Credit Alix Vallecillo, LVTHN SGHT

Crossspitter offers something a bit more extreme but no less brutal. The three-piece features members from such heavy hitters as Sonja, Woe, and Battlemaster, who come together to deliver some quick-and-dirty death metal. Quick in the sense that it’s faster than your blind grandma driving a Corvette with reckless abandon. Dirty in the sense that Crossspitter’s lyrics are filled with such visuals as “Pastures of piss,” a “Dry and grinding mouth,” and bodily fluids all over religious relics. They ain’t called Crosskisser, damn it, and it’s high time Atlanta metalheads come to revel in their blasphemous reveries.

Joining the fun will be Organ Trail. This four-piece slings sludge-filled grindcore tinged with death metal, providing those nasty, grimy, straight-outta-some-monster’s-guts riffs that make you want to run head-first through a brick wall. The band’s latest album, Appetite for Dissection, provides 14 killer tracks sporting such names as “Torrential Meat Shower,” “The Don’t Wipe Type,” and “Gutter Serpents,” in just under 25 minutes, so you know these grinders also have a penchant for quick-and-dirty. Word of advice, however, if you ever, for some reason, happen to see these guys around George Soros, turn and run

Tickets to see Sacramtum, Crossspitter, and Organ Trail in Atlanta are on sale here.