Over the past several years, the band Graverobber has become one of the most popular bands at the festival. I caught a few songs last year and was intrigued. This year I was determined to make it to a full show.
If you don’t know who they are, they play old school thrash/punk music while dressed as skeletons and monsters in bloody outfits. The lead singer, Wretched, also has a very scary voice. While it is spooky and schticky, it all has symbolism and a purpose. I am not going to get into all the details here of why they do what they do; if you want to know more, check out a show here at the festival this week or look them up on the internet to read about them. The basic idea is that of dying to sin, hence the reason they dress like the living dead. They also have song titles like “Army of the Dead,” and “I Wanna Kill You (Over and Over Again).” A couple times throughout the show, they douse the audience in blood colored water. If you don’t get that, then you’ve never heard the hymn “Washed in the Blood.” Graverobber just provides a visual aid to go with the idea. They also use terms like The Reanimator for Jesus (get it: he came back to life; he raises you from sin to new life?) and The Adversary for Satan, that one should be self explanatory.
I went in expecting to hear some creative lyrics and see some cool symbolism. I came away with a thought that I can’t get off my mind. Near the end of the show, Wretched preaches a sermon in which he discusses the two choices we have: dying from sin or dying to sin. He then encourages the Christians in the audience by saying, “Why can’t we realize what we are in Christ and just be that?” Wow. I can’t fully get my mind around that. It sounds so simple. What are we in Christ? Why can’t we just be that? I wish I was at a place where I could just be that. Seems like life would be so much simpler. I went in expecting to be entertained, and I was, but came away with something more valuable- I was challenged. At this point I don’t have all the answers, but I think the verse from Phillipians encouraging us to work out our salvation with fear and trembling definitely applies here. It’s a little easier to do when you are faced with the members of Graverobber in full costume.