Mentally Damaged Scandinavia Tour
Sweden 23/3 – 2008
Reviewed by: Anders Sandvall
Pictures by: Anders Sandvall
The Swedish crowned kings of glam/sleaze honored Malmoe’s rock palace Kulturbolaget with a show in late March. Last year they released the brilliant album DREAMIN IN A CASKET which has won several awards and has been highly praised by both fans and media and critics. And even if I was convinced by the band quite early on in their career they took me off guard with DREAMIN IN A CASKET. The tour began last year in Europe and early this year it continued on to Japan and Australia. Guitarist Silver left the band in the middle of the tour but the tour kept on rolling with replacement Vic Zino from Crazy Lixx who are based in Malmoe. He is now a solid member of Hardcore Superstar and not only a stand in.
Well, I was pretty excited to see the band again and I was also very interested in seeing Zino in a live situation with his new band. It must be hard to replace Silver as he was one of the bands front men on stage and I was anxious to see if Zino was capable of handling his task. Crazy Lixx was also supporting Hardcore Superstar this evening so Zino was gonna do a double gig tonight.
Crazy Lixx made the most of the 35 minutes they were on stage. In the past I have never paid the band any attention so it was hard for me to say if they did a show out of the ordinary. When Crazy Lixx’s gear was tucked away I was able to see the mighty Hardcore Superstar back drop that hung behind the drum-kit and the two back drops that were hung besides the drums. The number of people had increased drastically in front of the stage as the time approached for HCSS to play and I could see that many were ecstatic and really anticipated the show to start. I’m sure that many of the Crazy Lixx fans were eager to see Zino on stage with HCSS in his hometown. Suddenly the music went silent and on the stage came
Adde – drums, b-vox
Martin Sandvik – bass, b-vox
Vic Zino – guitar, b-vox
Jocke Berg – lead vocals
The magical evening kicked off with the excellent “Need No Company” and the audience catches on instantly and sings and screams along with Berg. The show moved on with another new and brilliant track “Medicate Me” and the teamwork between Sandvik, Berg and Adde was really tight and intense. It shows that the guys are used to being on stage and that they love it. Berg has become even more secure as a lead singer and front man and his jacket flew off in the second song when the temperature had gone tropical in the venue.
“Silence For The Peacefully” from the new album was introduced and after that came the first old song of the evening “She’s Offbeat” and Berg ordered everyone to scream and to scream louder than Jonkoping which was the city they visited the day before they came to Malmoe. Berg didn’t talk much instead he focused on the songs. “Hateful”, “Wild Boys”, “My Good Reputation”, “Bag On Your Head”, “Kick On The Upperclass” and “We Don’t Celebrate Sundays” were rowed up and it was fun to see bass player Sandvik taking a leap forward and taking more contact with the audience than before.
The show felt more powerful and had more tempo than earlier shows with the band. Maybe Zino was a well needed fuel injection for the band? “Dreamin In A Casket” was fired off before another older track came. That song was dedicated to a famous Swedish singer songwriter Håkan Hellström and it was the song “Sophisticated Ladies” if it was ironic or not it’s up to you to decide. Berg introduced Zino as the bands new guitarist and the audience went bezerk and screamed “Zino, Zino, Zino”. And how did Zino managed to pull of his task as the new axe-man in HCSS? I thought he did a good job even though he looked a bit nervous. His effort mostly was to stand solid on his side of the stage and throwing out guitar riffs. It also seemed like he had problems with some of the songs but that maybe was the nerves talking. Despite the age difference it was Sandvik and Berg that took most places on stage and worked the hardest. Zino probably did his job but for the next time I’d like to see him more active.
Ordinary playing time ended with three tracks from the last album, “Last Forever”, “My Good Reputation” and “Bag On Your Head”. When I looked at the clock I saw that the guys had only played for 55 minutes which was a bit cheap. But the crowd screamed and cheered for more so the band came on stage again and did “Kick On The Upperclass”, “Liberation” and “We Don’t Celebrate Sundays” where everyone in the audience sang a long in. It was a worthy closure of the show but again I have to opponent against the short playing time that together with the encore was 70 minutes.
The show was too short and they did too many songs from their new album and the previous one. With thought of the horrific ticket price was it not the most ultimate HCSS show I’ve seen. The band has become much meaner, rawer, dirtier and untamed on stage and they sound much harder live compared on album. With the new album they once again proved that they are the masters of glam/sleaze party metal not only in Sweden but in Europe at the moment. It’s sad that Silver left the band and Zino weren’t anywhere near up to doing Silvers work on stage. Not during this show at least. It was a huge audience which was great for the venue and the band. HCSS didn’t disappoint me and after all it’s always fun to see and hear great glam/sleaze music like this.
Need No Company
Silence For The Peacefully
Dreamin In A Casket
Sensitive To The Light
My Good Reputation
Bag On Your Head
Kick On The Upperclass
We Don’t Celebrate Sundays
Thanks to Sanjay Larsson, tour manager of the band with help with press/photo pass.
Thanks to Markus Tagaris from Gain for the help.
Thanks to the nice staff and crew at KB
More info about the band