Santa Maria Summer Fest (SMSF) is an extreme music festival located in Beja, Southern Portugal. It’s been happening since 2010. To promote this year’s edition, a ”warm-up” event took place at Cave 45, Porto with the bands Humanart, Psychonaut 4 and Nocturnal Depression.
Portuguese black metallers Humanart opened the evening with only a few people on the venue, but more people entered while they were playing. The show started with ”Embracing The Fire”, followed by ”Seeds of Destruction”. The venue was starting to get more and more crowd and for those who didn’t knew the band until then, seemed very pleased by the discovery. Soundwise, Humanart mixes the traditional black metal sound with some technical elements listenable here and there. The set quickly ended with ”Years of Revelations with Sorrow Voices” leaving the public with the right mood and energy for the rest of the night. A perfect start!
Next, hailing from Georgia, was the depressive black metal act Psychonaut 4. Playing for the first time in Portugal, a lot of fans were anxiously awaiting for this gig. Graf von Baphomet, Drifter, Glixxx & Co opened the set with ”Parasite” after a loud welcoming applause. Graf and Drifter were the most expressive members during the performance putting everything they had into it. Lord Lokhraed (Nocturnal Depression) joined them in the middle of the concert to perform a song resulting in a powerful ingredient to the band’s stage presence. ”Serial Lier”, ”Moldy” and ”La Deca[Dance] II” were some of the songs in the setlist. The fans seemed to know all of them. Lastly, they finished with ”Antihuman” leaving the stage with under a cheering and loud applause. For sure a concert to remember.
To end the night, French depressive black metal band Nocturnal Depression came up last. Focused on the latest release ”Spleen Black Metal”, the band opened the set with ”Elégie”, followed by ”L’Isolement” and ”Acédie”. Lead by vocalist/guitarist Lord Lokhraed, the band continued the performance without much talking. There was time to revisit some of the oldies like ”Her Ghost Haunts These Walls” from 2008’s album “Reflections of a Sad Soul”, bringing darkness and melancholy mixed with brutal aggressiveness in the middle. Close to the end they performed ”Nostalgia”, probably the most known song of the band making the public react with synchronized headbanging. Nocturnal Depression finished the gig with ”Dead Children” and left the stage under a loud ovation.