Pictures Worth a Thousand Growls

Remember when you saw the cover of our issue with Watain and thought, “Holy shit that photo rules.” Or maybe it wasn’t Watain but Amon Amarth or when Varg was ready for his controversial close-up. While us writers would love to take all the credit for luring in readers, incredible photographers like Ester Segarra (who snapped all of the above mentioned) are due much of the credit.

This is why we’re so stoked to mention her photography exhibition Beyond the Road at Roadburn this year. The Londonite (is that what you call them?) is showing off some of her work from Decibel and much, much more. But here’s the more erudite press release:

Over the past 16 years, Tilburg’s Roadburn Festival has become an acclaimed meeting ground for a broad, international community of bands determined to honour the roots of rock ’n’ roll by continuing to push at its boundaries, for whom the most personal and resonant paths lie beyond the stock mannerisms and desperate pastiches that continue to congest the mainstream. This is a culture founded on diversity and the vision to create kaleidoscopic new worlds, yet it’s one that encompasses the traditional and the experimental, the psychedelic and the doom-laden. All are bound by a spirit of open-ended exploration and personal expression, for whom rock is a continuity to tap into rather than a series of set pieces to re-enact.

To not only capture visually both the scope and the unity of this culture, but to bring such distinctive worlds to light takes a rare level of insight and artistic sensitivity, qualities that renowned, Barcelona-born photographer Ester Segarra has brought to the underground rock scene for the past decade. Based in London, she has continually sought out subjects whose creative vision extends into the extra-ordinary. Through both her unflinching live shots and meticulously composed portraits, she has fleshed those out visions into some of the most striking and definitive images of artists whose reputations have spread across the world. Beyond The Road is a unique opportunity to view a world that defies easy categorisation brought into vivid relief. Featuring acts across the ages, including two of the most seminal figures in heavy metal, Ozzy Osbourne and Tom G Warrior, as well as carriers of doom lore across the ages – from legendary Pentagram frontman Bobby Libelling to British torchbearers Cathedral and Electric Wizard – and groundbreaking sound-sculptors such as Michael Gira, Neurosis and Jarboe alongside many more, this unmissable exhibition offers an empathetic, enlightening lens on the true carriers and fanners of rock’n’roll’s flame, and one that brings them out in full, prismatic wonder.

See, it’s pure, unalloyed ruling. Now after looking at our analytics it turns out the majority of our blog readers live in J. Bennett’s apartment building and therefore may not be able to make it out to this incredible show. But for that sliver of you who’ll be out that way to perform or just mosh like glorious maniacs, please stop by and see this stunning, brutal work.