Hi this is Heidi from Austria, I am doing a guest post here, gig review of Kamelot / Xandria / Triosphere / Blackguard
First off, this was the first time ever Kamelot came to Vienna and also the first time ever I saw them live. I was half afraid that Tommy would be a disappointment – don’t get me wrong, I loved what he did for Seventh Wonder! But Roy Khan has always been bringing out the beauty of the darker sides of life to me. Tommy is such a positive person … I just cannot imagine him ever writing a song like Memento Mori, my Kamelot all time fav.
But I am off the point. When I came to ((szene)) – the venue – people were still waiting outside on the pavement for doors to open and we could hear soundchecking going on inside. ((szene)) is rather a small venue, maybe 400 or 500 people fit in there, and as Thomas Youngblood announced from the stage the show was sold out. Doors opened late and I had just time to check out the merch tables when the first band Blackguard started playing, announcing that they had a lot of technical difficulties, oh wow. Sound was indeed rather awful at the beginning and the microphone was on overload all the time. But it got better thank god.
Their set was only four songs and they played to about 25 people at the start and maybe 50 at the end. I guess their next album will be called something like ‘uhm I was late, didn’t actually make it to your show’ … Their vocalist was outside afterwards talking to people and that was the sentence he heard most often … I didn’t stay all through their show because Death Metal shouts and screaming never cut any ice with me. The crowd seemed to like it though, and the band was good really, they got a kickass lady on drums too.
Instead I went outside to the backyard where the supportbands’ merch tables had been regaled to (it was freezing cold) and got a copy of Triosphere’s ‘Road Less Traveled’. They were very surprised I bought it before the show 🙂 Triosphere is a band I learned to like just from their youtube videos, about the only female fronted power metal band I can stand at all. They were up on stage next and I thoroughly enjoyed their performance. Such a small thin lady, Ida Haukland has a surprisingly powerful voice that cut through the awesome guitar walls easily, and the energy that emanated from the whole band was amazing. The room soon filled up, I guess they made a lot of new fans that night. I could hear people talk about them afterwards. They even came outside to the cold to sign CDs, that was cool (literally).
Xandria I didn’t know before, but most of the people there obviously did, the room was getting rather full. Xandria is a Nightwish-style operatic metal band and I didn’t like them. Their singer is cool, a charming Bavarian (all Austrians have a sneaking liking for Bavarians), but the band was smug and showed a blase attitude that didn’t impress me. The singer also kept fiddling with her in-ear plug and her wireless transmitter that was located beneath her right shoulder (at first I thought she was losing her dress). This was most irritating to me, maybe because for the past five years at most of the gigs I attended I was the one responsible for fixing these things 🙂
They had about two songs on their setlist that I liked a little. The singing was off key in lots of places and the songs sometimes lost all tightness and structure.
At last Kamelot were up. The room was more than crammed now and it got fucking hot and loud in there. Hails and horns up! They started off with Rule The World, the band members came on stage one by one and were greeted by enthusiastic cheers and shouts. In the beginning the sound was really awful, keyboards and drums were too loud and I couldn’t hear Thomas Youngblood’s guitars at all until the guitar solo in ‘The Great Pandemonium’, that was third on the setlist I believe. It got better to a point that I could enjoy the show very much, but the crowd was actually so loud that it sometimes drowned out the finer parts of the music. The second song was Ghost Opera and by then the whole room was screaming, shouting, jumping and singing along. It was an awesome show and an amazing audience. I wouldn’t have missed this for anything. I think even the band themselves were amazed.
The only thing that was strange was the way they went off stage, I didn’t even realize the regular set was over. The crowd cheered like hell and then the encores started off with a bass solo. This was the only part that I could give a miss, I mean, bass is a groovy instrument. Soloing without drums? No way. He tried to play guitar on his bass, it didn’t thrill me.
The keyboard solo did though, this was earlier on, and on the vid you can hear us all singing along to ‘Forever’.
I am bad at names 🙂 the female vocalist was not introduced, she was totally great as well and the stage show and the energy between her and Tommy were awesome. Last on the list was March of Mephisto and this was really impressive. Two girls hitting the marching drums, and another male vocalist came on stage as Mephisto for some growls and he was acting well and playing with Tommy too.
Well as I hadn’t realized we were already hearing the encores I was totally disappointed when after the song was over the stage technicians started to dismantle the drum set immediately 🙂 Lol, I was the only one in there who didn’t realize it. The band didn’t come out for signing CDs, also a slight disappointment, I had very much hoped they would.
They updated their facebook status only minutes after the show though and it said: Roof of the szene now blown into oblivion. Vienna you are amazing!
It was a great great night and Tommy didn’t disappoint at all, he is very likely the best man they could have found to replace Khan. So Kamelot remains the exceptional band to me that they were ever since Khan took the vocals.
If they had played a second night I would have been there.
I also got my copy of ‘Silverthorn’ that night of course and it has been running on my car stereo ever since 🙂