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In Flames // Live @ House of Blues Houston // 5.25.24

Article and Photos by: Ommar Ortuvia


Houston, TX — Growling vocals. Low-tuned guitars. Fast riffs. Double bass pedals. Black…lots of black. These are the main ingredients that any death metal band requires, along with the typical visual elements that invoke the darkest parts of our imagination. All this and more were present inside Houston’s House of Blues venue on the very muggy night of May 25th, 2024. That night Houston was the penultimate stateside stop by Swedish death metal band In Flames, supported by the Texan band Creeping Death, and Gatecreeper from Arizona.

In Flames has been around for a while….a looong while. They were formed in 1990 in Gothenburg, Sweden and during the 30 plus years that they have been in existence have become one of the most influential and lauded death metal bands in the world. In their native country they have won numerous awards, and have cemented themselves all over the world as one of the founders of the melodic death metal sub-genre.

The last time In Flames was touring the US they came as an opener for Meshuggah, and it has been a couple of years since they have toured as headliners. The expectant crowd inside the venue were looking forward to a full set this time, with a concertgoer exclaiming “last night’s show had 17 songs! This one should be the same! Woooo!” while pulling on his In Flames shirt with the iconic Jester Head printed on it.

When the lights were cut, a playback of “The Beginning of All Things That Will End” began, with the drummer, Tanner Wayne, stepping out on stage and drawing cheers from the public. The other members set up shop in their usual locations  and began their set with “Foregone Pt. 1,” from their latest studio release of the same name. During the instrumental intro, vocalist Anders Fridén entered the stage and began belting out his familiar growl, reminding us immediately how In Flames packs a mean punch. With hardly any break, they followed up with “Deliver Us.”  Afterwards Fridén addressed the crowd and asked them to sing along for the next tune “Meet Your Maker,” a treat for the audience since this tune has not really been played live much before. The setlist continued, blending up tracks from most of their studio albums, giving the fans a good mix of their old and new stuff. Their 2023 release Foregone received the most play, which in itself is an album that has more of their classic sound compared to their prior recent releases. All the tunes were played with a fierce energy that made it impossible to stand still if you were in the venue, with minimal breaks taken between songs.

Unfortunately all things must come to an end, and after about an hour and a half In Flames closed things off with “Take This Life,” the opening track from their 2006 album Come Clarity. Throughout the night Fridén interacted with the crowd with lighthearted banter, but also with biting remarks like inquiring why the crowd was so quiet. The guitarists also did their share and gave many smiles, glances, and finger points to people in the crowd. At the end of the set, picks were flicked and the printed setlists were handed out to some very lucky fans. In this manner In Flames let everyone know that they wouldn’t be where they are without the undying support from their fans. At this time they are finishing up their tour in the states, and they will soon head to Europe for the summer festival circuit. If you can catch them live, you’ll experience the brutal and aggressive drive that have made them legendary in not only the Swedish melodic metal genre, but the entire heavy metal scene.


Ommar Ortuvia
Merging my love of music and photography, I ended up here. No soy ni chicha, ni limonada.