At Blæst, Trondheim, Norway, February 22, 2008

Photo by Kristian Singh-Nergård

All photos by Kristian Singh-Nergård.

On a Friday in February, it was a good day for some Progressive Metal in Trondheim, Norway. The venue was Blæst; a small place that can hold up to approximately 350 people. The place got crowded eventually, but it seemed like most people stayed home due to the heavy rain showers on this faithful Progressive Metal night. The bands that were to deliver the goods were two bands from Skien in Norway: newcomers Supremacy, and veterans Pagan’s Mind.


Photo by Kristian Singh-Nergård

First on the stage were the relatively fresh band called Supremacy. Supremacy was formed back in 2004 and recorded their only demo to date in 2006. The band consists of talented musicians with years of experience from the Norwegian Metal scene. They play a more Symphony X-inspired style of Progressive Metal than Pagan’s Mind, but they clearly knew what they were doing and seemed really tight on stage.

Approximately one week before the concert the band announced the addition of Atle Pettersen on keyboards. This was not a bad choice because Pettersen really showed dedication, improvisation, and all in all really solid playing on stage. Supremacy consists of Kenneth Mori (vocals), Tommy Lorentzen (guitar), Frank Andre Iberg (bass), Jan Arne Iberg (drums), and Atle Pettersen (keyboards).

“Criminal Mind” and “Pain” are probably their strongest songs, and the band showed a great potential with these and also with the other songs. Let’s hope these guys get a record deal soon, because this band is certainly something fans want to hear more from.


  1. DAN (Death Angels Night) (off Criminal Mind – Demo)
  2. Criminal Mind (off Criminal Mind – Demo)
  3. Zero Places
  4. Pain (off Criminal Mind – Demo)
  5. Another Abstract Generation

Pagan’s Mind

Photo by Kristian Singh-Nergård

Next was the “veterans” of Norwegian Progressive Metal, and yes, apparently you can be a veteran after only eight years of existence and four full-length releases. It was obvious when they entered the stage that they’re a band with more than a few gigs behind them … they seemed very comfortable onstage and it really looked like they belonged there.

It’s been a couple of years since they last visited Norway’s capital of Rock, so it was about high time to make amends and show the Metal fans of Trondheim what Progressive Metal is all about. They made their entrance as the intro from their latest record, God’s Equation (2007), “The Conception” played over the speakers. Then they went right into the title track from the already mentioned record.

Photo by Kristian Singh-Nergård

Naturally, the set list was dominated by songs from God’s Equation, and next on the list was “United Alliance.” A great part of Pagan’s Mind’s sound comes from Ronny Tegner’s keyboard play, and “United Alliance” is as much driven from his efforts as from Jørn Viggo Lofstad’s guitar play. It’s also great to see a keyboard player that connects with the crowd, and though vocalist Nils K. Rue and the already mentioned guitarist Lofstad tend to get most of the attention, the rest of the band was in no way “out staged.” This is a band that really keeps the team spirit and they interacted well with each other, and seemed to have a lot of fun playing.

“Hallo Spaceboy,” their David Bowie cover from God’s Equation, is a song that has got mixed comments in reviews online, but it functioned great at this concert, and the crowd also seemed to know the words to this song. It served as a good transcendence between the slower and more laid back “Prophecy Of The Pleiades” from 2002’s Celestial Entrance, and the more extreme and more Progressive “Atomic Firelight” from God’s Equation. These three songs have three widely different expressions and this allowed vocalist Rue to show different ranges of his voice. Rue must really be one of the finest vocalists within the genre; he seemed as steady live as on record and there was not a sour note to trace at any point.

Photo by Kristian Singh-Nergård

There was also a place in the set for an instrumental medley consisting of excerpts from the instrumental tracks of Celestial Entrance and Enigmatic: Calling (2005). This was a true display of a variety of time signatures, polyrhythms, tempo changes, and extremely technical playing from all instruments. Rue came back on stage for “New World Order” from Enigmatic: Calling and left the stage with the rest of the band after dedicating the next tune to the late guitarist Thorstein Aaby. This was a beautiful, almost ballad-like, instrumental from God’s Equation called “Farewell.” This instrumental is a keyboard/guitar tune that truly showed that Lofstad not only is a fast guitarist, but that he also has a taste for the slow and melodic.

Photo by Kristian Singh-Nergård

Last before the obligatory encores was “Aegan Shores” from Celestial Entrance. The crowd was really into the old stuff and seemed to want more from this album. The band went off stage for no longer than half a minute and entered again to perform two more tracks. The first was “Alien Kamikaze,” an upbeat Hard Rocker (with a twist of Prog in the middle) from God’s Equation. And finally, closing the set was the crowd-pleaser “Through Osiris Eyes” from Celestial Entrance. The crowd was really up for this one and most of the people at Blæst seemed to know the words to this one as well.

All in all, it must be said that the Norwegian Metal scene is getting stronger and stronger. Bands like Pagan’s Mind release great music and inspire young and fresh bands like this night’s opening act Supremacy. Pagan’s Mind is definitely a band you need to see live this year. They are tight as hell and perform with such assiduousness that it’ll light a spark in every Metal heart in the venue. Next for these Progressive Metallers is a short European tour as opening act for Brainstorm in March. Go see them if you can!


  1. God’s Equation (off God’s Equation)
  2. United Alliance (off God’s Equation)
  3. Supremacy, Our Kind (off Enigmatic: Calling)
  4. The Prophecy of Pleiades (off Celestial Entrance)
  5. Hallo Spaceboy (David Bowie cover, off God’s Equation)
  6. Atomic Firelight (off God’s Equation)
  7. Search For Life (off Enigmatic: Calling)
  8. Instrumental medley
  9. New World Order (off Enigmatic: Calling)
  10. Farewell (Instrumental, off God’s Equation)
  11. Aegean Shores (off Celestial Entrance)
  12. Alien Kamikaze (off God’s Equation)
  13. Through Osiris’ Eyes (off Celestial Entrance)


  • Kristian Singh-Nergård

    Kristian is one of the partners at Metal Express Radio. He is Metal Express Radio's Marketing and Communications Manager, and on occasions also reviewer and photographer. Based out of Oslo, Norway, Kristian is a bass player and owner of the independent record label Pug-Nose Records. He has been a proud member of the Metal Express Radio crew since 2006.

    View all posts

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.


This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

The reCAPTCHA verification period has expired. Please reload the page.