Archive for Firewind

King Diamond to play Bloodstock 2013

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , on 12th October 2012 by Nico Solheim-Davidson

Minutes ago, the Bloodstock announced over Facebook that King Diamond has been confirmed as the Friday night headliner for an exclusive UK show. The metal legend himself will be performing a number of Mercyful Fate classics as well as several numbers from his solo career.

King Diamond joins the likes of Anthrax, Accept, Firewind and Fozzy for next year’s festival, which takes place from August 8-11 2013 at Catton Hall, Derby. Tickets for Bloodstock can be purchased here.

 

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Doro–Raise Your Fist

Posted in CD, Metal with tags , , , , , , , on 11th October 2012 by Nico Solheim-Davidson

Doro
Raise Your Fist
Released: 19th October 2012
Metal
Released via Nuclear Blast

Since the beginning of her career, Doro has gone fought and won every battle in the metal scene, eventually gaining her the unofficial title of the Queen of Metal, as well as influencing several bands in the process. With a vast and extensive discography already under her belt, Raise Your Fist, which features the likes of Lemmy (Motorhead) and Gus G (Firewind), is the latest chapter in the German singer’s legendary career.

Raise Your Fist In The Air starts the album with a powerful sound and take no shit attitude. Belting out punchy riffs and domineering vocals, the track is unrelenting from beginning to end while Coldhearted Lover lashes out with a slow, more frozen sound (pun not intended). Unsurprisingly, Doro’s vocals adapt well to the lyrical change of sound, still belting out powerful vocal sections that are really emphasised by the guitar stylings of Bas and the subtle keyboards of Luca. Some of the lines that Doro belts out are more than memorable.

Rock Til Death thrashes about with the hard rockin’ party feel while still blasting out the hard-hitting sound that has become associated with Doro’s music. I’m left with mixed feelings about the ballad track It Still Hurts. While being an enchantingly performed piece, Lemmy’s vocals just don’t seem to sound right with the soft, emotive sound of the song om the first few listens but after a while, Lemmy’s vocals really do grow on you during this track. Moving on from the slower, softer sounds, Take No Prisoner bursts in, wielding around an old-fashioned, antagonised sound which will no doubt go down a treat with fans of NWOBHM bands such as Judas Priest. The use of sirens in the song add that a certain prison-break feel and mysticism to the song as well.

Grab the Bull (Last Man Standing), which features Gus G, carries on the aggressive tone of the previous track but at a slower pace – And it still packs more punch than a leather belt across the face. Gus’ part on the album throws in a crisp, clean bit of metal, contrasting well with the raw, callous sound of the song. Engel (German for “Angel”) has all the makings for an instant classic ballad, soothing and seductive vocals and a magical piano medley. The use of German lyrics add a touch of untamed power to the sound, echoing well throughout the song. The contrasting use of keyboards and guitars do a lot to enchanting the listener as well, throwing in a certain despair that add the emotion to the lyrics and really make the vocals stand out.

Freiheit (Human Rights) continues the use of German lyrics – The track overall requires a couple of listens before you can really appreciate the composition and beauty of the song though it may be a little soft for those that are wanting something heavier like Little Headbanger (Nackenbrecher) which unleashes a fury of guitars and violent drums topped with belting vocals and face-melting basslines. Doro’s vocals morph into something more furious sounding for Revenge, dancing well with the storming guitars and raging drums. It certainly is one of the stand-out tracks on the album, crashing back and forth like a vehement ocean.

Free My Heart is a drastic change in pace and sound from the previous song, calling back the docile elements while still echoing its own grand, majestic sound complete with with powerful, grandiose keyboards and vocals that really pack a good walloping. Victory sounds like a good ol’ fashioned anthem of victory, really displaying some of Doro’s vocal talents before the album ends with the acoustic whisperings of Hero, another powerful and emotive track that is a fitting tribute to the late, great Ronnie James Dio. The guitars and keyboards call out beautifully, reflecting the emotions in the lyrics while at the same time screaming out with an epic sound.

It’s not hard to deny Doro’s title as the Queen of Metal and by the sounds of Raise Your Fist, she’ll be holding onto her crown for a long time to come. The album is one to write about about, with some memorable anthems and more emotion invoking tracks, so get ready to Raise Your Fist!

4.8/5

Nico Davidson

Leaves’ Eyes confirm Russian shows

Posted in News with tags , , , , , on 21st September 2012 by Nico Solheim-Davidson

Leaves’ Eyes frontwoman Liv Kristine recently announce that the band have booked a pair of gigs in Russia.

October
31st – Vladivostok, Russia – Arena

November
2nd – Yuzhno-Sahalinsk, Russia – Rock & Jazz Club

Leaves’ Eyes are currently on tour with Firewind. Their next show is tonight in Southampton, UK at Talking Heads. A complete live itinerary can be viewed at this location.

Firewind & Leaves’ Eyes @ Moho, Manchester

Posted in Gig, Live with tags , , , , , , on 17th September 2012 by Nico Solheim-Davidson

Firewind & Leaves’ Eyes
Moho, Manchester
14th September 2012

Originally, the doors were meant to open at 6:30pm but had been pushed back to 7pm for reasons unknown to me. Once the doors had opened, I trudged my way in, followed shortly by several groups of people in Leaves’ Eyes shirts, Firewind shirts and other band shirts.

After a lengthy wait, and several smoked cigarettes, Leaves’ Eyes took to the stage, led by frontwoman Liv Kristine, who looked like  a modern-day visage of Freya. Opening up with the captivating song Spirits Masquerade before moving into the more harmonic sounding Velvet Heart. Liv’s vocals echoed throughout the venue, like some sort of angelic chorus while the fierce screaming of guitars and bass came crashing down like the waves, during the band’s mystifying performance of Ocean’s Way. Alexander’s vocals really proved to be stronger than ever during My Destiny. The band’s set took on a more folky sound later on with songs like Kråkevisa – the beautifully metalified version of a traditional Norwegian folk song – and a heavier, more enchanting version of Mike Oldfield’s To France. However, the real highlights of Leaves’ Eyes’ set, for me, were the romantically played track Frøya’s Theme and the bewitching, almost haunting soundings of Elegy which really emphasised the strength of her vocals, as well as the aforementioned traditional song that is Kråkevisa.

One thing I noticed when Firewind were ready to play was that all the Leaves’ Eyes fans had moved to the back of the venue while the ones there for Firewind moved to the front rather hastily, readying themselves for a bombardment of energetic and fast-paced riffs and technical styled drumming. When Firewind began, I soon found myself a bit disinterested for the first few songs due to the vocals of frontman Apollo becoming very strained when he went to hit the high notes. When they played the powerful Destination Forever, I was use interested in the band’s performance and their mighty use of guitars and bonecrushing drums, whilst some members of the crowd jammed along on their air guitars. Few Against Many proved to be a crowd favourite with the behemoth drumming and slow, melodic and somewhat epic guitar solo. I found myself bored when Firewind performed Mercenary Man, due to it sounding like a typical power metal anthem – complete with cheesey lyrics. Glorious proved to be a well-executed track, with its subtle introduction and loud roaring of guitars. As the band finished up their set, the crowd demanded more and more – I’d already been tipped off that they were going to perform Breaking The Silence with Liv Kristine at the end, so I was suitably pleased when it was one of their encore songs and certainly a track that really displayed the strength of her vocal style, especially when combined with Apollo’s hard-hitting voice. The other two encore songs I never caught the name of but I found them to be rather weak, compared to some of the other stuff Firewind played.

Nico Davidson