Archive for HateSphere

Finntroll w/ support – Porto, Portugal

Posted in Gig, Live with tags , , , , , , on 24th March 2015 by Pieni

Profane Omen, HateSphere, Finntroll
Hard Club, Porto (PT)
20th March 2015
Promoted by SWR Inc

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With “Nattfödd” celebrating its 10th anniversary last year, Finntroll embarked on an intense European tour where they’ve been playing the album in full. The second leg of the tour included an one-off show in Portugal that was almost a no-show – there were some problems during the trip between Madrid and Porto (“you wouldn’t believe it if I told you” were Vreth’s words), but they made it, about forty minutes later. And since half of the gigs in my country run late, we didn’t even realize how serious the situation was.

 photo _DSC0152_zpsqiqqhhvt.jpgProfane Omen stormed the stage with wide smiles on their faces. They had never played in Portugal before and that was something they’d been wanting to fix for a long time, which singer Jules Näveri told us in a perfect Brazilian-accented Portuguese! I later learned he’s married to a Brazilian lady, explaining why he is so fluent in this difficult language. But even if it was quite easy for him, it was something highly appreciated by everyone in the room and helped breaking the ice, since it was obvious that Profane Omen weren’t exactly famous among the crowd. Well, they are now. And not just because the singer could speak Portuguese (and even make funny remarks). I’m pretty sure their music and adrenaline-driven performance would eventually win the audience over. I’d heard of them before, but not the music, and for some reason I was convinced they were a death metal band. Wrong! Their sound is just as heavy but with lot of groove and a punk-rock irreverence that made my first expression – “stormed the stage” – quite literal. Around since 1999, the Lahti-based band has released four full-lengths so far and played a little bit from every one (well, almost every one – they left “Inherit The Void” out), kicking off with “Wastehead” and finishing with “Painbox”. It was my first time seeing them and hopefully not the last. And a longer setlist next time would be even better! (5/5)

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https://www.facebook.com/pages/Profane-Omen/42711203429

 photo _DSC0634_zpsjdpsfvlx.jpgNow HateSphere didn’t need any introduction to the Portuguese audience. Last time the Danish played here, in support of Hypocrisy, “Murderlust” had just been released – three days before – and we were hoping that they would return to promote it as headliners. That didn’t happen but it didn’t make the reaction of the fans less enthusiastic – some of them were there that night exclusively to see them perform.

Because of the delay, they had to cut their set shorter, beginning with “Reaper Of Life” instead of “Lies And Deceit”, as apparently was the original idea (I took a peak at the setlist, where “Lies…” was at the top, crossed all over by a black marker).  Still, as in any other HateSphere gig, they made the best of their available time, totally owning the place.

Since Trevor Strnad wasn’t there, it was the crowd that helped Esse singing “Iconoclast”, doing the same gesture of repeatedly raising the arms in the air, as it’s typical of The Black Dahlia Murder singer. “Oh, so you know the guy? Good!”, said Esse with a grin. He would also say we looked beautiful, even if he admitted he couldn’t see a thing, thanks to the smoke machine.

And speaking of helping singing… At some point, Esse turned the mic into someone in the crowd, and later he would actually pass it into someone else’s hands. Not sure if those “someones” were random as the first was Afonso Ribeiro, drummer in local band Gates Of Hell, and the second was Raça, former singer in that same band – a band who plays this cool little song called “Abusive Resolution”, where Esse did some guest vocals on its recording.

“Oceans” and “Sickness” were the two final songs, the latter entitled to the already traditional wall of death. The moshing that followed suit was even more intense than what had been until then and trust me – that says a lot. Once again we wish next time we’ll see them as headliners, like we did back in 2010, when still promoting “To The Nines”. One can always hope, right? (5/5)

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https://www.facebook.com/hatesphere666

 photo _DSC0935_zpsjo2fv883.jpgI know some people left after HateSphere, but still the room was more crowded for Finntroll than at the opening of the doors. That’s the downside of having a bill of so distinct genres – it reaches a wider range of public, more tickets are sold, but it doesn’t mean all the people will watch all the bands.

Between gigs there’s always background music playing, but this time we had… frogs. And crickets. A very nocturnal sound. I know that trolls live in swamps and “nattfödd” means “born at night”, but listening to that during the whole intermission was a bit too much. Or maybe it was my eagerness to see Finntroll after six years.

Without surprise, “Nattfödd” was performed in its entirety and then came the promotion of the latest “Blodsvept” (that’s actually two years old already – damn, time flies!) mixed with a bunch of classics. All drenched in beer and happy dancing.

Vreth was quite chatty, to which the crowd responded loud and cheerful. At some point he asked who had been at their last gig there and I was surprised that not many hands were raised. But then again, there were lots of kids at the venue, I suppose they weren’t old enough to attend a festival back in 2009… (I was there, took a few cool pics too: http://frontrowforever.net/2011/05/28/revisited-finntroll-caos-emergente-20090913/)

I believe it was after “Jaktens Tid” that they left the stage and the damn frogs echoed again until Finntroll returned for the encore. But by this time I was too pleased to be bothered by the croaking – these trolls don’t belong in the forest but definitely on stage. (5/5)

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https://www.facebook.com/officialfinntroll

Photos & text by Renata “Pieni” Lino

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Epica release second part of The Quantum Enigma documentary online

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , , on 7th March 2014 by Nico Solheim-Davidson

Dutch symphonic metal titans Epica have released the second part of their documentary online, which shows the behind the scenes aspects of the recording process for their new album The Quantum Enigma. Like the first part, the video includes music from the new album, allowing fans to have a sneak peek of the album ahead of its release in May. The trailer can be viewed down below.

The Quantum Enigma will be the turning point in a new decade for Epica, taking on a new sound: One that is modern, heavier and without compromises and will show why Epica are one of the leading bands in the symphonic metal genre. Keyboardist Coen Janssen comments:

We believe that The Quantum Enigma is the album that will take us to the next level! The reactions from the fans on the first part of this documentary strengthens this belief even more!

Epica recorded The Quantum Enigma with producer Joost van den Broek (ReVamp, After Forever) at the Sandlane Recording Facilities in The Netherlands. The album has been mixed by Jacob Hansen (Volbeat, Hatesphere) and features artwork by longtime collaborator Stephan Heilemann.

Epica online:

http://epica.nl
http://facebook.com/epica
http://twitter.com/_epica

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Epica launch studio documentary, first episode online

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , on 3rd March 2014 by Nico Solheim-Davidson

Dutch symphonic metal titans Epica, who are fronted by the stunningly talented Simone Simons, have launched the first episode of their studio documentary online. The documentary gives a behind the scenes look at the recording process for the band’s sixth studio album The Quantum Enigma. It also gives fans a preview of the album ahead of its release. The first episode can be viewed down below.

The band recorded The Quantum Enigma together with upcoming producer Joost van den Broek at the Sandlane Recording Facilities in the Netherlands. The album has been mixed by Jacob Hansen (Volbeat, Hatesphere).

Whereas the 2013 Retrospect performance reflected on a decade of Epica as one of the leading bands in the symphonic metal scene, the upcoming sixth studio album The Quantum Enigma marks the beginning of a new Epica: modern, heavy and without compromises. Guitar player Isaac Delahaye commented:

The whole process of writing and recording TQE was extremely refreshing for us. Instead of preparing the album in our home studios separately, we rehearsed the songs together in the studio. Just like any other band, you could say, but as Epica is located in 3 different countries this is a little more complicated for us. The direct interaction between us has certainly lifted up the quality of the songs, as no detail was left unspoken. Definitely worth taking some time off from touring! As far as songwriting goes, the main focus was groove and melody.

The Quantum Enigma will be released on 2nd May (Europe), 5th May (UK) and 13th May (USA) through Nuclear Blast.

Epica online:

http://epica.nl
http://facebook.com/epica

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Interview: Pepe [2011]

Posted in Interview with tags , , , , , on 9th November 2011 by Nico Solheim-Davidson

Danish thrash-death metal outfit Hatesphere have been a big part of the European metal scene for several years now. Nico has a chat with lead guitarist, Peter “Pepe” Lyse Hansen.

hatesphere07122011
Nico: Do you feel that the new album, The Great Bludgeoning, differs from your previous albums? If so, how?

Pepe: We still sound like HateSphere no doubt about it. But as on all of our other albums it’s the small details that make the difference. I think we have returned a bit to more old school sounds on the new album, both musically and lyrically.

N: Do you have any plans for a UK or European tour in support of the new album?

P: As we speak we are touring on the first of two small headliner runs around Europe in the fall of 2011. The tour should take us to the UK in December on a couple of dates. Furthermore we have plans on a European tour in the spring of 2012 as well, before concentrating on Scandinavia in April and May of 2012. During the summer we will play festivals before returning to the US in the fall of 2012. So, we should have enough to do.

N: Since 2010, there have been two line-up changes in terms of bass and vocals, do you feel these line-up changes have helped develop a new sound for the band?

P: Absolutely. Not only sound-wise but also internally in the band we feel better than ever. The members fit way better in HateSphere. They have tried lots of stuff before, they therefore know what to expect and what not to expect. They are both HateSphere fans, so they also know the music and how they want it to sound. Furthermore we know them from before, so they also fit personally in the band. We are all about the same age, we have tried some of the same things, and this make us stronger as a unit for sure.

N: [Reader’s question] What made you want to play music and how did you come to play metal?

P: I went to school with this guy who played guitar in a band. I got drawn towards it, started listening to hard rock and metal and then finally got my own guitar and started playing. I never dreamed of ever doing albums and touring but having achieved that is just fantastic. The first couple of years I just played by myself but then got into the band that actually later became HateSphere. That was in 1993, so I have been in the band for almost 20 years! It took us 7 years to finally record and album and get good enough to get a record deal but since then things have just developed.

N: As a band, what has been the highlight of your career so far?

P: Touring the US, Japan and China… And to play at some of the biggest festivals in Europe for sure!

N: Are there any bands in Denmark that you would recommend that our readers check out?

P: No new bands have really caught my attention. But check out the older brigade of Danish quality bands like Raunchy, Mercenary, Mnemic, Illdisposed, etc.