Worm Ouroboros In Concert

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Photos: Samantha Marble for NPR

"This is an epic song I would like to dedicate to Daniel Menche, Aerial Ruin and Worm Ouroboros for supporting us tonight — all great friends of ours from the Pacific Northwest. We like to keep it local," John Haughm said, moments before closing Agalloch's encore with the appropriately epic "In the Shadow of Our Pale Companion."

As the night unfolded, not only was Agalloch's local allegiance on display, but also the elements that make the band Agalloch. A bearded and burly Erik Moggridge reflected Agalloch's folk beginnings as Aerial Ruin, with a loner '70s bummer vibe raised on dark metal, perhaps akin to Man's Gin. You can watch him perform "Amends" below, as filmed by the New York City underground metal and noise documentarians in Unartig. Noise musician (and Worm Ouroboros driver) Daniel Menche was a last-minute addition to the bill, manipulating the vibration of his throat on a wooden stick connected to a contact mic and run through a swarm of effects pedals. It was a gloriously loud transition (not taped, unfortunately) to the dynamic Worm Ouroboros.

Dreamy and haunting, Worm Ouroboro's set at Le Poisson Rouge felt like a processional. Led by two vocalists — bassist Lorraine Rath and guitarist Jessica Way — the band's quiet, almost medieval melodies led to a torrent of heavy doom metal in "Winter" (due to technical difficulties, opener "Riverbed" does not appear here). New member Aesop Dekker, pulling double duty on this tour with Agalloch, showed his dexterity with light, atmospheric percussion until giving the drums a proper pummeling when needed. The highlight of every song, though, was when Rath and Way harmonized siren-like soprano and alto voices, intertwining like garlands.

Set List

  • "Winter"
  • "Further Out"
  • "Pearls"

Mixed by Bill Bowen.

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