Friday, Dec. 5 Metallomusikum hosts a Krampusnacht concert of black metal blasphemy at The Sidebar. Bands include Dweller in the Valley (Frederick, MD); Ravn (Richmond, VA); Death Shroud (Radford, VA), Archael (Fredericksburg, VA) and Athame (Hagerstown, MD/Falling Waters WV). Check out the event page here.
Don’t know what a Krampus is? Perhaps you don’t really want to know.
Krampus is a pre-Xian era concept of a goat-like beast that has become known as an entity that punishes bad children. When the Xians came along, they turned him into the sidekick of St. Nicholas. Children who were good got presents. Bad children were beaten with a birch branch and stuffed into a sack and taken off to who-knows-where. In heathen times the Krampus may have been a symbol for an initiation rite. Perhaps today’s youth could use a good dose of Krampus fear in their lives.
The legend of Krampus pervades in many forms throughout Europe, and it is starting to catch on in the US, which of course turned it into an excuse to drink and run through the streets. There are some more pagan-style Krampus celebrations, such as the Krampuslauf in Philadelphia. For the most part though, I think Americans see it as a chance for second-Halloween.
Either way, the bands playing Krampusnacht are the best at what they do or I would not have booked them for my little Xmas Devil gathering. Check out some tunes below and make your way to 218 E. Lexington St. Baltimore by 8 p.m. on Friday. If you don’t, you-know-who will be waiting in the alley with a sack to carry you off.