Last year’s raid of Swedish Vikings AMON AMARTH was utterly successful. While the band’s latest record, Jomsviking, still reigns the charts, the Swedes top it all and announced another extended foray in spring. And yeah, we loved to follow the call and joined again. The (sold out) show last year in Tilburg was spectacular, even without the pyros, so, why not doing it again? :)
It actually were the support bands on this new trek that made my mouth watering. I haven’t seen DARK TRANQUILLITY for ages and also OMNIUM GATHERUM are known for excellent performances. Good reasons to hit the road towards Cologne to the :: Palladium ::. Much more, as pyros were allowed. Thankfully, the highways appeared to be merciful on this sunny Saturday – it was the distributor road inside Cologne and the following search for parking that killed my buffer time. Argh. Anyway, made it on time ;)
:: pics :: OMNIUM GATHERUM ::
When I arrived, the Palladium was already packed and crowded but still with long lines outside. The show wasn’t sold out but I’m sure that were not many tickets left. Perhaps 10, 20? However, when the clock struck 7 lights went out and Finnish death metallers :: OMNIUM GATHERUM :: entered the stage kicking off the evening with tracks from their current record Grey Heavens. The audience was still somewhat reserved but was easy to enthuse. OMNIUM GATHERUM played with such delight and energy and thus inevitably infected the crowd. At the end of a short but entertaining show, the band got a well-deserved applause and, I’m sure, gained new fans.
Setlist: The Pit, Skyline, Frontiers, The Sonic Sign, New World Shadows, New Dynamic
:: pics :: DARK TRANQUILLITY ::
I was really much looking forward to see :: DARK TRANQUILLITY ::. They are one of the longest-standing bands from the Gothenburg metal scene, one of the bands that invented the so-called Gothenburg sound and changed the metal world. End of last year the Swedes have released their 11. full-length, entitled Atoma, which differs from preview releases and reminds of the band’s earlier work like The Gallery and Projector (yeah, they played ThereIn :)), my favorite albums from this band. And I didn’t stand alone with my fan-heart. The hall was full of DARK TRANQUILLITY fans, giving them a thunderous welcome when they jumped onto stage. The band was in marvelous mood, seeing singer Mikael Stanne laughing and grinning like a Cheshire cat. He truly lives for this job. The audience was ecstatic from the opening notes of Force Of Hand to the last one of Misery's Crown, waving Swedish flags and singing along almost every song. Mikael Stanne, known for his closeness with the audience, always performed on the edge of the stage and tried to reach out to the crowd over the photo pit.
Such a fantastic show! Couldn’t stand still. Sound and lights were brilliant and I sang along too. Full-throated. DARK TRANQUILLITY focused on their new album Atoma, added a song from the predecessor Character and otherwise dwelled in Fiction. Geez… This show was way too short! I just hope that the guys will return for a headlining club tour. Did I already mention how stunning this show was? Totally stoked…
Setlist: Force Of Hand, The Lesser Faith, Atoma, The Science Of Noise, Forward Momentum, Terminus (Where Death Is Most Alive), The Pitiless, ThereIn, Clearing Skies, Misery's Crown
:: pics :: AMON AMARTH ::
Puh… still blown I calmly looked towards the :: AMON AMARTH :: show. After Tilburg I knew what to expect. A short fire briefing followed, because no one wanted to be burnt or kill the equipment. Oh yes, it became hot! This was indeed a fierily show!
Stage setting and setlist have been the same on this second tour. Only one track was exchanged (Tattered Banners And Bloody Flags instead of On A Sea Of Blood). Ok, it’s a conceptual show and many elements are intrinsically tied to special songs. Of course, the sword fighting appeared (The Way Of Vikings) as well as the changing backdrops and the glowing eyes of the huge Viking helmet where the drums were put on. Once again new drummer Jocke Wallgren shown his talents with a great solo. And finally we got a lot of fires and CO2 jets ;)
At the end and after vociferous encore screams AMON AMARTH returned onto stage with huge drinking horns (Raise Your Horns) and frontman Johann Hegg swung a huge Thor’s hammer at the final Twilight Of The Thunder God, while the Midgard Serpent sneaked up from the background, accompanied by a firestorm. What a grand final! This was awesome!
AMON AMARTH have found their special way for spectacular shows and sold out venues. It is pure fun and pleasure to see them performing live. To see the Swedes is a great experience. The crowd was highly satisfied and was released into the night sweaty and with raspy voices. I left with a smiling face too. Homewards…
Setlist: The Pursuit Of Vikings, As Loke Falls, First Kill, The Way Of Vikings, At Dawn's First Light, Cry Of The Black Birds, Deceiver Of The Gods, Tattered Banners And Bloody Flags, Destroyer Of The Universe, Death In Fire, One Thousand Burning Arrows, Father Of The Wolf, Runes To My Memory, War Of The Gods // Raise Your Horns, Guardians Of Asgaard, Twilight Of The Thunder God