Imperial Triumphant

Live at 1720

Los Angeles, CA

March 1st, 2022

Review and photos by Travis Baumann

Imperial Triumphant are an experimental extreme metal project out of New York City. Donning metallic masks that conjure feelings of the art-deco movement and Greek theater, they invoke a mysterious and dark ambiance that enhances their musical output.

Falling somewhere between black and death metal, they put a unique spin on the extreme metal genre with the use of horns, strings, sax, piano, and synths to build the backdrop for whatever the story and message of the song may be.

Their latest release, "Alphaville" came out during the great pandemic in 2020 and sports guest musicians the likes of Tomas Haake of Meshuggah and Tray Spruance of Mr. Bungle which is a great indicator of how far from the typical metal band they are.

The band consists of founder Zachary Ilya Ezrin on vocals and guitar with Kenny Grohowski on drums and Steve Blanco on bass guitar, lending backing vocals at key moments.

Touring with Immolation, the venue on the outskirts of downtown Los Angeles was packed with fans anxious to see some live metal music. The mosh pit was raging and at one point the bassist went down into the middle of it to play the last portion of one of their songs right in the fray.

They compounded on the theatrical robes and masks with atmospheric interludes and voice over samples of dialogue. At one point the lead singer popped a huge magnum of champaign and started pouring it into fans' open mouths.

A good portion of the set came from "Alphaville" along with some fan favorites from "Vile Luxury" as well. I am fairly new to the band so only recognized the newer material. They had a solid amount of time so got quite a few songs in there that I was not familiar with as well.

I look forward to seeing these guys again when they can make it back to this side of the country. The atmosphere they conjure with their masks and robes combined with the use of unconventional instruments and song structures really sets them apart from other bands and makes for a great live experience.

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