Blackest of the Black: Day 2 @ Oak Canyon Park - 05/27/2017 -

Blackest of the Black: Day 2 @ Oak Canyon Park – 05/27/2017


Ministry @ Blackest of the Black – 05/27/2017

After a very successful Day 1, there was great anticipation for Day 2 of Blackest of the Black on Saturday May 27 as Ministry and Danzig were set to close out the festival. A beautiful sunny 70 degree day set the background for nine of the blackest bands in metal to indulge their fans in the darkside. All the attractions of Day 1 were still alive and well, the sacrifice altar, bondage stage, suspension stage, blood bath, stocks, cage dancers and much more.

Saturday’s lineup featured:

Danzig | Ministry | Vamps | Atreyu | Venom Inc | Marduk | Devildriver | Combichrist | Ghoul and Ritual

Overall the Blackest of the Black was a well-run event with two days of incredible music, the location was perfect for a mid-sized festival like this one and the weather was fantastic. Hopefully Blackest of the Black will return in 2018 and Danzig turns this into a yearly ritual.

Day 1 of Blackest of the Black coverage can be found here:

Day 2 of Blackest of the Black – 05/27/2017


In the black of the night, Danzig and band took the stage at 9:00pm and performed an epic 90 minutes of dark, moody Danzig classics. The fans somehow bolstered their second wind as the energy in the park was electrifying as the band fed off the fans and vice versa. Danzig opened with “Skin Carver” and “Twist of Cain” before playing a new song “Devil on Highway 9” live for the first time. Celebrating the 25th anniversary of Danzig III: How the Gods Kill, the band played several songs off the 1992 classic. Danzig ended the main set with “Mother” and then played a killer two song encore of “She Rides” and “Am I Demon”.

Danzig did not approve to photograph his show.


At 7:40pm Ministry took the stage and all hell broke loose for the duration of their set. Al Jorgensen is without a doubt one of the most unique and interesting frontman in metal music. The band delivered a 12 song set that pummeled those in attendance and featured the ultra-heavy song “Punch in the Face” as well as Ministry classics such as “N.W.O”, “Just One Fix” and the set closer “Thieves”. Fear Factory vocalist Burton C. Bell joined the band onstage during “Just One Fix” to sing the chorus. Ministry played a new song for the first time live “Antifa” which sounded hard and heavy and was promised to be on their new release this fall.


Japanese rockers VAMPS played an early evening set that drew a large gathering of VAMPS diehards right up close to the stage in front of the barrier that consisted primarily young Japanese females. Loud screams and shrieks could be heard as the band took the stage and delivered 60 minutes of pop induced metal. Led by vocalist Hyde and guitarist K.A.Z, VAMPS added to the diversity of the days lineup.


Maybe not quite as evil as most bands playing the festival but no less intense, Orange County’s own Atreyu played somewhat of a hometown show that gave the metalcore fans in attendance an opportunity to let loose. Vocalist Alex Varkatzas spent quite a bit of time down against the barrier allowing fans to sing along and get in his face while bass player Marc McKnight jumped off stage and went out into the middle of the mosh pit and played while the crazed fans circle him. The band played a cover of Bon Jovi’s “You Give Love a Bad Name” that actually had fans moshing in the pit.

Venom Inc

English heavy metal pioneers Venom Inc proved that age has no impact on the ability to deliver extreme metal. Spawned from the original Venom band, this version called Venom Inc (due to legal issues) features former Venom members Tony “Demolition Man” Dolan on bass/vocals with Jeffrey “Mantas” Dunn on guitar and, Anthony “Abaddon” Bray on drums, this trio delivers some intense metal representing the impact of their early recordings. Those in attendance embraced this opportunity to pay tribute to the Godfathers of early thrash/black metal.


The most blasphemous band in the world, Sweden’s black metal kings Marduk received a thunderous welcome from the Blackest of the Black crowd as they cast a spell of evil throughout their set. The band spewed 45 minutes of songs filled with Satanism, anti-Christianity and Death that had the Marduk die-hards in a complete frenzy.


Things got REAL heavy once Devildriver took the stage as Dez Fafara and company set the bar very high for those yet to play. Their groove laden heaviness filled Oak Canyon Park with songs like “I Could Care Less”, “Ruthless” and “Clouds Over California” as the large circle pit in front of the stage created a bit of a dust cloud. The band ended their onslaught with “Meet the Wretched”.


Electro-industrial blast masters Combichrist were an early highlight as they shouted out “Hey You, What the Fuck is Wrong with You”. The band delivered a high energy 40 minute set that had founding member and vocalist Andy LaPlegua prowling the stage throughout. Definitely a fan favorite early in the day.


Oakland’s mask wearing thrashers Ghoul provided some kickass metal music along with a “Gwar-like” stage show that had blood spewing outlaws and giant transformer like characters battling it out on stage. Those fans right up front knew what they were in for and loved every minute of getting blood soaked by Ghouls “ghouls”.


Los Angeles’ own black metal veterans Ritual kicked off day two of Blackest of the Black on Saturday at 1:30pm to a small crowd of early-birds. But the early set time did not deter Ritual from putting on a killer performance that had their white corpse paint shining in the mid-day sun. Samhain drummer London May was behind the kit for Ritual for this performance.