Tribulation rose from the depths below to bring Lee’s Palace a stadium-worthy performance

Swedish heavy metal band Tribulation returned to Toronto last week alongside co-headlining doom metallers Pallbearer.

Tribulation has been on an upward trajectory after releasing one of the best metal albums of 2018 thus far. If you haven’t had a chance to listen to their fourth studio record Down Below (via Century Media) then you’ve fucked up BIG TIME. It’s dark, catchy, and epic on so many levels (stream it ASAP). Same goes to say for their show at Lee’s Palace. Aside from it being a small stage with zero production dollars, it was a stadium-worthy gig.

Their stage presence and collective musicianship spoke volumes to their talent and what they have to offer the music world. Lead guitarist Jonathan Hultén was beyond captivating. Fans (myself included) couldn’t keep their eyes off him with his intricate and wistful movements swirling across the stage. But don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t just his frolicking or ass-branded skeleton tights that got everyone’s attention. His guitar chops were uncanny and the way he worked his fretboard sucked me into every shredded lick.

Guitarist Adam Zaars solo’d his way to hell and back himself, but for the most part kept the set in check rhythmically. Vocalist and bassist Johannes Andersson was rock solid and stood out the most in my opinion. His vocals sounded great, but the bass grooves he constructed and unleashed upon us had me hypnotized. I’m a guitar player myself, but after seeing him play he made me rethink my instrument of choice. Lemmy would be proud that he’s slaying sets with the same axe.

Tribulation played for over an hour and I wish it never ended. I should start practising dark magic and learn how to cast a spell forcing the world to endlessly loop in a series of Tribulation gigs (that’d be metal AF). I’m gonna go listen to The Formulas of Death (2013) while you check out my photos from their set below. Hope you dig em' (drop dead if you don’t).

Tribulation’s Setlist:

Lady Death
The Lament
The Motherhood of God
Crise From The Underworld
Cauda Pavonis
The World
Strange Gateways Beckon

Words / Photography by: Steve St. Jean
**All photos © Beyond The Watch. Do not use or reproduce w/o permission**