Alcatraz Line up: 2019
Formed in 1999 right here in Kortrijk, these doom/sludge/post-metal masters are one of the main exponents of the Belgian extreme metal scene. Amenra are known for their fierce live shows, creating a soundscape that is as crushing as it is emotionally demanding. Steeped in darkness, misery, suffering and mental torment, yet… with a glimmer of hope through empathy, togetherness and spirituality. With the Church of Ra, a collective of kindred souls and like-minded artists, they also like to perform in unusual locations such as abandoned churches, chapels or even caves. All of their albums carry the prefix ‘Mass’ (I through VI), referencing a gathering of people with the aim of offering mutual support in dealing with life’s adversities rather than an actual religious experience. Five years separate ‘Mass VI’ (2017) from its predecessor but it’s also their most intense production yet. Let’s just hope the swan on the album cover isn’t the band’s tongue-in-cheek way of announcing the band’s swansong. Meanwhile it’s high time to enter the Church of Ra!