Morpheus Rising w/Support [Live Review]

Bands: Morpheus Rising, Lost Effect & Cryptic Age
Location: The Duchess, York
Date: 8th October 2011

Morpheus Rising have established a strong fan base with their NWOBHM styling, so with them on the bill, any show is guaranteed to be a good night. The only thing to make it better would be to add fellow York-based bands to the bill in the form of Lost Effect [This was their first gig with their new vocalist] and Cryptic Age.

The night began with the female-fronted folk metal quartet, Cryptic Age, opening up. The crowd was small to begin with though that didn’t stop the band from being in their element up on stage. Cryptic Age’s sound sounded massive as it echoed throughout the venue, as they performed songs such as “No Folkin’ Way” and “On The Bare, Cold Ground”, both of which are from their EP “Homeland”. The bassist’s spoken part in “The Aftermath” created a very epic atmosphere. They also performed for the first time ever “Eternity Beckons”, part two of “Sounds Of Infinity”, which will be featured on their album [Sounds Of Infinity]. The song had a short yet majestic, symphonic sound before turning into a heavy assault of metal – Probably the heaviest song Cryptic Age have ever written and performed. They received a brilliant reaction from the crowd after each song.

Lost Effect were the main support for the night and as mentioned above, this was their first gig with their new vocalist, Emily. Lost Effect’s set was a brilliant mix of mellow and brutal music, sort of like a less symphonic, more Yorkshire styled version of Epica. The new vocalist, with all due respect to her predecessor, seemed to gel with the band superbly – Stronger vocals and great stage presence, though she did seem nervous throughout parts of Lost effect’s set, though this didn’t affect the overall performance. “Whispers” was certainly a highlight of the set.

Morpheus Rising took to the stage shortly after putting on an immense show in true NWOBHM fashion. The vocals of the frontman were nothing short of amazing while the twin guitar work kept the crowd on wanting more from the band. they had a very 80s kind of sound with a modern twist mixed in there as well. “The Gypsy King” – Which caused a slight wave of giggles from some of the audience when it was announced – and “Shades Of Grey” were definitely crowd favourites performed by Morpheus Rising. The only thing that was off-putting about their set was the lack of a crowd, which was both shocking and concerning considering the sheer brilliance of the band.

The overall verdict: Definitely a gig that could easily secure a spot in the top ten gigs of 2011. Both support acts [Cryptic Age & Lost Effect] put on simply amazing performances and there was no better choice for a headlining act than Morpheus Rising. Any promoter with half a brain cell would want to book a show of this calibre for sometime in the future.

Nico Davidson

Photos of the gig are available on the Valkyrian Music Facebook page.

4 Responses to “Morpheus Rising w/Support [Live Review]”

  1. One of the reasons for the apparently small crowd may have been that York, a small city which traditionally (and worryingly) has small turnouts for most bands, was practically inundated with metal/rock that evening. I’ve seen MR prety much every time they have played York but this time chose to see the newish Vega (melodic rock) at another venue (thinking there would be hardly anybody there but finding a surprising large attendance). Elsewhere the heavier The Fallen and Beyond All Reason, both bands with a core following, were playing. I can’t help but think that there must have been a crossover in audience potential. It’s maybe time that the promoters/venues worked together rather than seemingly to compete against each other.

    • I agree whole heartedly that the promoters should work together. I wasn’t aware there were other gigs happening Saturday night, as I’m not from York, so I never have a clue to as what’s happening over there until I receive an event invite on Facebook but it’s no surprise that the other events would have drawn away the potential audience – Plus the ticket prices might have been a bit steep for some people.

      • I believe that the ticket price was set when MR were due to be supporting Welsh proggers The Reasoning, who almost certainly would have dragged in a bigger crowd. The last time they played York people travelled miles to see them. Unfortunately, The Reasoning had to postpone this gig, so MR stepped up to headline. It’s not my place to speculate whether the price should have been dropped but I will say that it wasn’t a factor in my decision to miss this gig.

      • I know that some can be picking about paying anything more than £5 for a gig if they’ve never heard of the headliner. I travelled from Bridlington to see MR play, though I was more interested in seeing Cryptic Age and Lost Effect – Mainly the latter as it was their first gig with the new vocalist.

        It was a good gig though, it would have been better for the bands if there was a bigger crowd.

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