Steve Harris British Lion
European Tour 2013
Zico Chain – support act
Kulturbolaget, Malmo, Sweden
March 12, 2013
Reviewed and live pictures by: Anders Sandvall
At the end of last year, metal legend Steve Harris’ solo debut album BRITISH LION was unleashed. The album received a mixed response from both fans and the media and I have to say that I wasn’t convinced at all when I first heard the album. The British Lion tour began in Portugal at the end of February and ended back home in England. The band landed in Malmo Sweden in the middle of March and the band visited all of the Scandinavian countries except for Denmark. Zico Chain was the support act and had tagged along during the entire tour but needless to say, the fans in Malmo were there to see Steve Harris in action and not Zico Chain.
The doors at Kulturbolaget opened at 7 o clock and I was there when the club opened. I noticed that a lot of Danish fans were there which maybe wasn’t strange as the band didn’t do any shows in Denmark. Luckily there was a photopit so the photographers could take pictures without having a lots of arms and heads in their lenses. The club went black at 7.45 and it was time for the support act to kick of the evening.
The band was trio with the bass player and guitarist on each side of the stage and the drummer sat in the middle. It took until the second song before the singer said it was nice to be in Malmo. The small amount of people in the venue stood solid and looked at the band or hung out back by the bars waiting for British Lion to go on. Zico Chain played English rock and both the light and the sound worked in favor of the band. Nothing much happened during the show and after 30 minutes their time in the spotlight was over.
More people arrived during the time Zico Chain performed and the crowd now mostly consisted of middle aged men wearing Iron Maiden shirts. A huge backdrop with the cover art work of the BRITISH LION now hung behind the drums and two smaller backdrops were put on each side of the drums. The major part of the people in the club now stood leaning on the fence waiting to see Steve Harris on stage. It took a while before the crew was done with preparing the stage but at 8.45 it was time for Steve Harris and his British Lion to invade the stage.
Steve Harris: British Lion
“This Is My God” and “Lost Worlds” began the show and the band was welcomed on stage by the fans with applause and cheers. “Karma Killer” followed and the band consists of:
Richard Taylor – lead vocals
Grahame Leslie – guitar
David Hawkins – guitar
Simon Dawson – drums
Steve Harris – bass
Taylor continued with saying Father Lucifer which was the name of the next song and while the band played the intro continued and Taylor saying ” Come on Malmo, let me see your hands!” All fans all put their hands into the air waving along with the music. Harris stood like always with one foot on the monitor playing the bass, headbanging and singing a long in the songs. He moved around on stage which he was the only one doing. Taylor thanked the support band and wondered how the fans was doing. He thanked everyone for coming and said that this was the first time the band was in Sweden. Next song up was “The Burning” that ended with a bass solo and just as during Zico Chain, the lights and the sound were perfect.
“The Chosen Ones” followed and Taylor invited everyone to sing a long in the middle. “These Are The Hands” continued the show and Taylor sure sang really good. His voice sounded a lot better live compared to on album and he was also a really good frontman. Both guitarists complemented one other well and the drummer felt solid. As well, it wasn’t a bad thing to have one of the world’s most iconic bass players in your band! It looked like Harris had a really great time on stage and it must be fun for Harris to be playing in smaller more intimate venues again. Taylor once again thanked for the warm welcome and announced the next song “Guineas And Crowns” which was followed by “Last Chance”.
I have to admit, I wasn’t too overwhelmed by joy when I heard the British Lion album for the first time…or for the third time, but I found myself actually enjoying the live performance. The music sounded a lot more edgier and a lot more appealing. Quite good actually. The semi-boring English rock music that was featured on the album turned into a tasty dish live. It was a really nice surprise. Taylor had the audience screaming on command but wasn’t satisfied with the energy or the volume so he ordered everyone to scream even louder and then he and the band looked happier. Suddenly, fans began to sing “happy birthday” to Harris because it was his birthday (57) and after that introduced Taylor the band. Of course Harris brought down the most cheers and applause from the fans and he looked a bit embarrassed and moved by the singing and for the warm welcome he got. “World Without Heaven” and “Do You Want It” followed. On “Judas” Taylor played an acoustic guitar and invited fans to sing chorus on their own. That song ended the show that lasted for about 65 minutes but the fans wanted to hear more from British Lion and shouted for encores. The UFO cover “Let It Roll” kicked off the encores and “Eyes Of The Young” ended the session. Taylor thanked the Malmo crowd for an amazing night and the fans thanked the band for delivering 85 minutes of music.
Even though this show wasn’t the best I’ve seen, it wasn’t totally disappointing either. I thought the music worked much better live than on their album and it was nice to hear new songs. It was of course extremely fun for an old hardcore Iron Maiden fan such as me to see Steve Harris live on a more intimate stage than I’m used to. Later after the show, Harris invited the frozen autograph hunters into to Kulturbolaget where he and the band signed their stuff and took pictures with them.
This Is My God
The Chosen Ones
These Are The Hands
Guineas And Crowns
Us Against The World
World Without Heaven
Do You Want It
Let It Roll (UFO cover)
Eyes Of The Young
Thanks to Kristian Kornhag, head of press at Kulturbolaget, for help with press/photo pass to the show.
Thanks to the security/staff for nice treatment.
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