Children of Bodom with Tyr and Death Angel
House of Blues Hollywood March 1, 2014
Halo of Blood over North America tour 2014
Review and photos by Metalette
When I heard that Children of Bodom, Death Angel, and Týr were touring together, I was stoked. What a dream line-up! I saw them on a Saturday night at the House of Blues on the Sunset Strip, and the show was even more awesome that I imagined it would be. And I knew it was going to be awesome, so that’s saying quite a bit.
Wasting no time in getting to the good stuff, Týr kicked off the show with heathen fury. Yet alongside the forceful, pagan feel of their performance, there was an elegance and composure these guys have mastered, altogether making Týr a riveting act to see.
Being from the Faroe Islands, they are already extremely unique, and their music is even more so. They mix an archaic, Scandinavian sound (often including lyrics in Faroese) with metal that is hard to put any label on. It’s music you have to experience yourself, especially live.
The crowd at the House of Blues was full of Týr fans, and soon-to-be Týr fans as well – after their set I heard many people talking about their amazing performance, and saying that they would be checking their music out after the show. Also, stay tuned for my interview with Terji Skibenæs (guitar/backing vocals) and Gunnar H. Thomsen (bass/backing vocals)!
Death Angel played next with a set that brought out the brutality in the crowd. The pit for their performance was both fascinating and cringe-inducing to watch. Though I’m not as well-versed in thrash metal as many people are, I feel like Death Angel really gets what it’s all about. They have the look, the attitude, and the music – a whole thrash-package, with no frills.
Vocalist Mark Osegueda honored us LA fans with his appreciation for LA keeping the scene alive, and also gave us a history of how Death Angel has broken down musical barriers over the years; there was a time when they could only get gigs in the Valley, yet now Hollywood is thrash-friendly! And no wonder, as Death Angel’s live show is a force to be reckoned with. The band has great on-stage chemistry, and they sound impeccable with killer vocals, shredding riffs, tasty bass, and whaling drums.
Children of Bodom
The House of Blues was the most crowded I have ever seen it when Children of Bodom took the stage. Legendary vocalist and lead guitarist Alexi Laiho warmly thanked us for the fact that it was a sold-out show! Children of Bodom played a wild and lengthy set, with songs from their older albums, as well as songs from their newest, Halo of Blood. To name a just a few of the songs they played: “Scream for Silence”, “Hate Crew Deathroll”, “Living Dead Beat”, “In Your Face”, “Are You Dead Yet?”, and “Dead Man’s Hand on You” (a prevalence of a death-theme; that’s metal!).
The diversity of Children of Bodom’s fans attested to the band’s legacy and brilliant future. From bro-guys in baseball caps to long-haired metalheads, older couples to young women, Children of Bodom brought quite the crowd. The whole venue was alive with enthusiasm, from the balcony to the pit, and everywhere in between. When VIP, table-sitting members are jumping over the rail and into the mosh pit, you know the band is doing it right. My favorite audience members to “people-watch” included a girl who windmilled the whole time from her seat on a guy’s shoulders, and a bro-dude who grabbed a table-candle and waved it around like a lighter.
Children of Bodom were both a joy to hear and a joy to watch. I was especially tickled by keyboardist Janne Warman’s ability to chug a beer and play a one-handed keyboard riff at the same time. All the band members were visibly enjoying themselves, and interacting both with the audience and with each other. Warman and drummer Jaska Raatikainen played a game of fetch with a drumstick, and Alexi Laiho pulled off a flawless 360 guitar-toss, among other great things. And as would be expected, Laiho’s solos were an honor to experience. The amount of talent wrapped up in this band is a rare and amazing thing! And speaking of talent, be sure to check out my interview with guitarist Roope Latvala, coming soon!
Children of Bodom: https://www.facebook.com/childrenofbodom
Death Angel: https://www.facebook.com/deathangel