Posts Tagged ‘London’

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Iced Earth + Ensiferum + Kataklysm + Unearth @ Electric Brixton, London

December 10th, 2016

Iced Earth + Ensiferum + Kataklysm + Unearth

@ Electric Brixton, London

December 6, 2016

Review by Torbjørn ‘Toby’ Jørstad

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Posted in 2016, Concert Reviews | Comments (0)

Ensiferum – Interview with Petri Lindroos

December 7th, 2016

Ensiferum

Interview with Petri Lindroos

December 6, 2016 – Electric Brixton, London

Interview by Torbjørn ‘Toby’ Jørstad

Ensiferum One Man Army promo

Petri Lindroos, frontman of Finnish folk metal pioneers Ensiferum was kind enough to sit down with Metal-Rules prior to their show in London this Tuesday. We talked about their recent acoustic tour, the upcoming album, and pros and cons of wearing a kilt on stage.

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The Amity Affliction @ Roundhouse, London

December 7th, 2016

The Amity Affliction – This Could Be Heartbreak EU/UK Tour

Roundhouse, London – December 6, 2016

Photography and Review: Billy Edmonds

Even though winter is definitely arriving in London, the queue that day was huge, for those who know the venue. Stretching well and truly beyond the Morrisons an hour before the doors opened, it was a good indication of the popularity of that night’s show. The line-up was a rather strange one featuring a huge mix of post-melodic metalcore, and ‘proper’ hardcore. I was quite interested to see just how this one played out, and as the doors opened, people were very keen to get away from the freezing cold outside.

Wage War
These guys are another new band on the metal scene, having stormed into the world of metal after releasing their debut album Blueprints last year, featuring the hit “Twenty One”. The room stays half empty during their show, which is a shame as they delivered a strong performance. Nevertheless, the singer’s call for a  moshpit in the first few seconds of the set doesn’t stay unanswered which makes a great kick off to the evening.

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It was really easy to see that many of the people in the venue were unfamiliar with Wage War, as there wasn’t too much movement in the room but that isn’t to say that these guys don’t deserve this spot.

They played an incredibly progressive set this evening. Within this line-up, I still strongly feel that Wage War should have been second or third on the lineup as they really fit the sound of Amity. Albeit they aren’t well known at the moment, by the looks on people’s faces they are going to gain a lot of attention from now on.  You can definately expect big things from Wage War.

Stray From The Path
These guys seemed a little strange when I saw them added to the bill for this tour, as I really felt they did not fit well in the line up. Unfortunately this was reflected in the crowd’s engagement with the show. For anyone who doesn’t know SFTP, their music is strongly anti-government and they don’t shy back from saying what they feel. As they come onto the stage, it’s really evident exactly what they stand for. Straight away they call for more movement, which they don’t get, but being from a HC background  this doesn’t put them off. The energy SFTP have is something to be really admired but there just didn’t seem to be that many fans of them in the crowd. I have seen these guys support many different bands and every time they have a  great following, but sadly not tonight.

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As the set continues the energy in the room slowly picks up, but not by an incredible amount. Something which really didn’t help the mood in the room was the fact that you could barely hear the singer, and the bass was far too loud. On the upper levels though, the sound was perfect.

Overall if you enjoy hardcore and have never seen SFTP, go and see this band; If you enjoy metalcore and not so much the anti-government vibe, stick to The Amity Affliction.

Northlane
Its been a little while since Northlane graced the UK’s stages. I was expecting them to be really excited to play this immense venue, but unfortunatly the energy from the band wasn’t too great, even though they appeared to have a lot of fans in the crowd. It seemed to me that a lot of people were still standing still and not really enjoying it. Again this could be down to the sound tonight, as it really wasn’t too great on the standing level of the show.

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Throughout the entire show, only one continual circle pit opens. I feel this is the case because it seemed to be the same people inside the pit the whole time. It’s a real shame, as Northlane are normally one of the best metalcore live bands on the scene, but they really let their name and reputation down at the Roundhouse. The only song everyone seemed to know was their main hit “Quantum Flux”, also being the only song that appears to be really outstanding this evening as they put all of their effort into this. I hope for the boys in Northlane to bring more energy next time we see them embrace our stages.

The Amity Affliction
Finally, the band everyone was waiting for. This could well be the largest tour Amity have ever done, covering the entire UK and EU in one big tour as well as an upcoming American tour – the guys really have their work cut out for them. This immense project doesn’t seem to phase them down as from the second thee guys appeared on the stage, nearly everyone seemed to know their lyrics,  which was quite amazing. When playing their second song “Open Letter”,  they fired loads off lametta looking like fireworks, which hung down from the ceiling for the rest of the show.

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The lighting tonight really added to their rather emotional melodies. As the night continues, not one person seems to be giving it a rest with nearly every single person in the room screaming the lyrics at the top of their lungs. The Amity Affliction have come a long way since their first studio album in 2004, and really deserve credits for how good they sound live. As I walk up the stairs after finishing the first 3 songs for the photoshoot, I notice that the sound is immediately much better. This could be put down to the architectural layout of the Roundhouse, but the sound tech should have realised this and adjusted the sound downstairs as I could barely hear any of the bands there.

Bassist Ahren Stringe is a great example of pure talent. His live vocal skills are really something to be admired, as he sounds exactly as he does on CD, proving that his voice doesn’t need auto tune. Overall, Amity completely smashed the Roundhouse that night. If you manage to see them on any of their upcoming tour dates, definitely do so. This tour is not to be missed!

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Upcoming tour Dates:
Dec 08 – ABC, Glasgow, United Kingdom

Dec 09 – O2 Institute, Birmingham, United Kingdom

Dec 10 – Waterfront, Norwich, United Kingdom

Dec 11 – Melkweg, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Dec 13 – Fryshuset/Lubben, Stockholm, Sweden

Dec 14 – Pumpehuset, Copenhagen West, Denmark

Dec 15 – Astra, Berlin, Germany

Dec 16 – Backstage, Munchen, Germany

Dec 17 – Arena, Vienna, Austria

Dec 18 – Knockdown Festival, Karlsruhe, Germany

Dec 19 – Kofmehl, Solothurn, Switzerland

Dec 20 – CCO, Lyon, France

Dec 21 – Razzmatazz 2, Barcelona, Spain

Dec 22 – Sala Arena, Madrid, Spain

Dec 31 – Red Hill Auditorium, Red Hill, Australia

Jan 02 – HQ, Adelaide, Australia

Jan 18 – The Jack, Cairns, Australia

Jan 19 – Dalrymple Hotel, Garbutt, Australia

Jan 20 – Civic Centre, Gympie, Australia

Jan 21 – Lake Kawana, Sunshine Coast, Australia

Jan 22 – Convention Centre, Gold Coast, Australia

Jan 25 – C.ex Coffs, Coffs Harbour, Australia

Jan 26 – Bar on the Hill, Callaghan Nsw, Australia

Jan 27 – Waves, Fairy Meadow, Australia

Jan 28 – Anu Bar, Canberra, Australia

Feb 02 – Chelsea Heights Hotel, Frankston, Australia

Feb 03 – The Arena, Geelong Vic, Australia

Feb 04 – Hobart Uni, Hobart, Australia

May 05 – Carolina Rebellion, Kannapolis, NC

May 19 – Rock On The Range, Columbus, OH

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Posted in 2016, Let's Get Rocked, Rock Concert Reviews | Comments (0)

Delain + Evergrey + Kobra and the Lotus @ Koko, London

December 3rd, 2016

Delain + Evergrey + Kobra and the Lotus

@ Koko, London

13th November 2016

Review by Oliver M.

Photography by Graham Hilling

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Sirenia + Týr + Unleash The Archers + Xaon + Relicseed @ O2 Academy Islington, London

December 2nd, 2016

Sirenia + Týr + Unleash The Archers + Xaon + Relicseed

@ O2 Academy Islington, London

November 27, 2016

Review by Torbjørn ‘Toby’ Jørstad

Photography by Graham Hilling

Sirenia

Sirenia

With five bands playing a vast range of different styles of metal, including symphonic, folk, melodic death, and power metal, this evening featured one of the more diverse lineups I have seen in my concert attending career.

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Sirenia – Interview with Morten Veland

November 30th, 2016

Sirenia

Interview with Morten Veland

November 27, 2016 – O2 Academy Islington, London

Interview by Torbjørn ‘Toby’ Jørstad

Photography by Graham Hilling

Sirenia

Sirenia

 

Morten Veland, mastermind behind the Norwegian symphonic metal act Sirenia was kind enough to talk to Metal-Rules before going on stage for their final show of this years European tour in London. Morten talked about their highly anticipated new album, Dim Days of Dolor, changes in the lineup, and the glamorous touring life. Read it all below! Read the rest of this entry »

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Týr – Interview with Terji Skibenæs

November 30th, 2016

Týr

Interview with Terji Skibenæs

November 27th, 2016 – O2 Academy Islington, London

Interview by Torbjørn ‘Toby’ Jørstad

Photography by Graham Hilling

Tyr

Tyr

On the final date of their European tour supporting Norwegian symphonic metallers Sirenia, guitarist Terji Skribenæs of Týr was kind enough to talk to Metal-Rules about their upcoming album, the ongoing whaling controversy surrounding the band, and their experience touring with Sirenia, amongst other things. Read the rest of this entry »

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Alter Bridge @ 02 Arena, London

November 29th, 2016

Alter Bridge

@ O2 Arena, London

25th November, 2016

Photography + Review: Billy Edmonds

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This line up for this gig was highly anticipated. It’s such a honour too be able to see bands of this stature play a venue like this. The O2 is one of the largest venues in England and Alter Bridge have without a doubt earned the headline spot they’ve got tonight. Luckily for the crowds of people waiting, the venue is under cover, as the weather outside is grimly cold. Read the rest of this entry »

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Opeth & Anathema @ Wembley Arena, London

November 25th, 2016

Opeth &  Anathema

@ Wembley Arena, London

19th November 2016
Review by Nathan Slack

Photography by Inty Malcolm

Opeth

Opeth

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Amon Amarth + Testament + Grand Magus @ Roundhouse, London

November 19th, 2016

Amon Amarth + Testament + Grand Magus

@ Roundhouse, London

4th November 2016

Review by Torbjørn ‘Toby’ Jørstad

Photography by Inty Malcolm

Amon Amarth

Amon Amarth

Swedish Vikings Amon Amarth returned to the shores of Britannia the first Friday of November in the year of 2016. Having finished plundering and burning all relevant villages and settlements about a millennium earlier, the Swedes arrived that day with gifts rather than trouble: gifts in the form of a behemoth of a metal show, including old school thrash from the New World, rocking heavy metal from their homeland, and a good dose of hard hitting melodic death metal centered around themselves. This was of course Amon Amarth’s stop at the Roundhouse in London, as part of their headlining tour promoting Jomsviking together with Testament and Grand Magus. An eager London audience greeted all bands with what was probably more enthusiasm than the villagers of the isle a millennium earlier, when they saw the armada of longboats approaching their shores.

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Amon Amarth – Interview with Olavi Mikkonen

November 6th, 2016

Amon Amarth

Interview with Olavi Mikkonen

4th November 2016 @ Roundhouse, London

Interview by Torbjørn ‘Toby’ Jørstad

Amon Amarth Bandphoto 2016

Amon Amarth released their critically acclaimed concept album Jomsviking earlier this year. After numerous festival appearances and supporting Megadeth on tour in the US, the band recently embarked on their European headline tour. Guitarist and founding member Olavi Mikkonen was kind enough to talk to Metal-Rules.com before their sold out show in London this past Friday.

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King Diamond @ The Forum, London

July 2nd, 2016

King Diamond + Angel Witch

@ The Forum, London

21st June, 2016

Review by Jarod Lawley
Photos by Talie Rose Eigland

King Diamond - O2 Forum 2016

King Diamond – O2 Forum 2016

The King’s return to the UK after a seven year long absence at Bloodstock Open Air 2013 must have impressed a lot of metalheads, because now the band haunt London again for the first time in ten years, they are playing to a crowd that is over twice the size to the that back out the Electric Ballroom in 2006. Read the rest of this entry »

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Blind Guardian @ The Forum, London

June 7th, 2016

Blind Guardian + Gloryhammer

@ The Forum, London

22nd May 2016

Review by Oliver M.

Photography by Graham Hilling

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Lacuna Coil – Interview with Andrea Ferro and Cristina Scabbia

April 21st, 2016

Lacuna Coil

Interview with Andrea Ferro & Cristina Scabbia

6th April 2016

Interview by Jacob Ovington

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Italy’s premier metallers are back and heavier than ever. Lacuna Coil’s upcoming album, ‘Delirium’ is set for release at the end of May, and it promises to be an insight into the darkest and most tortured corners of human experience. Based around the concept of an asylum in the hills of Italy, the record explores the themes of insanity, and as the name suggests, it’s a trip into delirium. We spoke to the band’s vocalists, Andrea and Cristina, to find out more about the album’s concept, where they got the inspiration for it, what it means to them and why they’ve taken a change in musical direction.

Hello, thanks for talking to Metal-Rules. How are you both doing today?

Cristina: Really great. We have a coffee machine, that helps.

You’re set to release ‘Delirium’ on 27th May, what can you tell us about the concept and how did you come up with the idea?

Cristina: It’s a long story, but to put a long story short we were working on one of the songs, we were working on the chorus of it and the word ‘Delirium’ came up. Since that day everything opened up in front of our own eyes, and in a second. So we immediately visualised the whole idea, not only for all of the lyrics, but also for the artwork, for the image that we wanted to connect with it. So, we imagined this fictional asylum close to Milan where patients within the asylum, and also spirits and old memories of patients that lived there before would tell us stories about their past experiences or their present experiences. So, the songs came out in this way, describing insanity, different levels of insanity. Not only from a medical perspective, but also something bigger that encompasses the insanity that we’re living in nowadays with everything that’s happening to us in the world.

The asylum that you talk about, is this place entirely fictional or based on anything real at all?

Cristina: It’s based on something real.

Andrea: We’d been visiting a couple of abandoned asylums that we have in northern Italy. One is about an hour out of the city, and the other one is a but further out. But still they’re very very dangerous because they’re falling to pieces, so you’re walking and pieces of the roof will come down around you. It’s not actually legal to go inside, but we wanted to check it out. Many people use it for pictures and stuff like that. It was very impressive to see all these very tall corridors and all the rooms, and thinking about people that lived there. We’d also been watching old pictures we found on the internet about patients. Those were more scary than some horror movies about these kind of things, because these patients were real first of all. Just the look on their faces, the emptiness, the sense of abandonment, the sense of getting really lost. That was scarier than something you see in a movie. You don’t need blood or violence. Just those pictures and the positions they were taking spontaneously, it was so weird.

Cristina: It was just disturbing. You could totally feel the anxiety, the pressure. It was really uncomfortable.

Andrea: The position of them when they were outside in the open, they were sitting randomly but it looked so weird. It inspired a lot, also about the research we did for the stage clothes and stuff like that. The way that we position ourselves in the pictures for the artwork and the promotional pictures.

So you did a lot of research on the subject?

Andrea: Yes, because we thought it was a very strong concept and it was worth doing something that really gives you an idea of what we meant with the metaphor of real life problems, and more generally the big problem of mental illness.

Cristina: And also something that we felt close to talk about, something that we also experienced in a way. Some of us went through episodes, periods of depression, some of us have been visiting for family reasons, places where people with mental problems were.

It touches everyone at some point.

Andrea: And there’s a strong reality to this part of you.

Upon first listen, the album strikes me as coming across a lot heavier than anything you’ve done in a long time, what are your reasons for this change in direction?

Cristina: It’s not like we just sat round a table and decided systematically, it was more of a spontaneous evolution of the record. We knew that we wanted to go heavier just because we enjoyed playing some of the songs more, when we perform live especially. So, the overall feeling of the band was that we wanted to do something heavier. But, of course, once you start songwriting you don’t know really where you’re going to go. So we didn’t really know that some of the songs were going sound THAT heavy compared to our usual type of songwriting. But, that’s what we liked about it, we said everyone is expecting us to maybe go softer, and we’re going in the complete opposite direction. We were loving it, but we also liked the fact that it was going to be something different from usual.

Andrea: We wanted to surprise ourselves first, and then also the listeners. That’s why we chose ‘House of Shame’ as the first song, which is probably one of the heaviest of the record. We thought that it was a good idea to shake things up, to say we’re back but it’s not just another Lacuna Coil record, because we’ve done quite a few records now. We wanted to tell people that we want to say something different this time, and we still have the passion to write music and to explore some territories that are not so common for us.

There are also a lot more growled vocals than we’re used to, why have you decided to make this change and why didn’t you use them so much before?

Cristina: Well, it’s something that we did at the very beginning of Lacuna Coil but we’ve never used as much as in this record. They just fitted perfectly with the vibe of the record and they were sounding great. I honestly love the sound of his (Andrea’s) growling vocals, I think they’re really distinctive. He has a very distinctive voice, and you can immediately recognise it as his voice. It’s so different from so many others. I was really excited when we decided to put more growls in the record.

Andrea: We kind of also, when we were songwriting with Marco the bassplayer who is the main songwriter for the band, came up with these heavy riffs and double bass. We thought instead of trying to water them down and make them more as we used to be and finding a compromise, we decided instead to push on the button and go full on heavy. If you’re going heavy, go all the way. Don’t try to make it work, just go for it. This way people can realise how honest the song is, not you trying to be cool by being a little heavier or whatever.

Lacuna Coil Delirium Press Shot

When releasing a new album, do you ever anticipate the response it will get or is it something you don’t think about?

Cristina: We don’t really think about reactions to be honest. That would be contrived, that would be really weird to sit down and write for somebody else. I mean, if we were a team writing songs for others then maybe we would think in this way. But, as soon as this is our art we want do something that we feel, something that we like, something that we can relate to. We don’t really think about how the album is going to be accepted, we didn’t really think about it. I believe that as soon as you’re honest and you’re putting out something that really represents who you are, I think you have a good that a lot of people will understand and like it.

For people who haven’t heard the album yet, how would you describe its sound?

Cristina: Ooh (laughs). Well if they’ve heard our music before this, they have to expect something definitely heavier. We stretched the vocals and we took them to the next level because Andrea’s never been as aggressive, and I’ve never reached higher notes. There are a lot of layers in this record, so there’s nothing so immediate. They will have to listen to songs over and over to find out all the layers that are in it, vocally and musically.

Andrea: If I had to describe the album, I’d say that it’s a trip. It’s a trip because it takes you through different curves, up and down. All the songs kind of build a little different mood, and until the end you can always go faster, there’s parts where you slow down and then go fast again. So, I would say it’s like a trip. A lot of people that have heard it told me that it’s an emotional trip in a way.

Cristina: And it’s also very evocative, very descriptive. So you’re totally sucked in as soon as you hear it, because you just listen to the lyrics and you know exactly where you are. The lyrics are just enhancing the music and helping the listener to have a more complete vision of everything.

What were the most challenging aspects of recording the album?

Cristina: For us singers, it’s recording vocals because it doesn’t really matter if you’re tired or if you’re sick, you have to be there. You have a certain amount of days, so you have to do it in that amount of days. For me it was challenging to try and reach the super high notes. It’s not always easy because some days everything is going good, and sometimes I’m like I’m too tired, I can’t do it.

Andrea: One thing that you’ve done one day, it’s so hard to reproduce. When we did the demos, some vocals that we sang on them still sound better than the ones we did in the studio. In the studio we sang it like 20 times, and at home when we were doing the demos we sang it once, and we never got the same exact intention, the same exact energy of that take. You can’t reproduce it. Sometimes it’s just that one take… you can’t reproduce it even if it’s longer or with a better pitch, even trying 20 different techniques you still can’t reach the same result. That’s an amazing thing about recording.

In terms of music videos, have you got any on the way?

Cristina: We are going to release a lyric video in a few days, but we’re going to film a proper video in the next few weeks.

What can you tell us about it?

Cristina: We’re still talking about it.

Andrea: We’re still discussing it, because we have a very clear idea of what we want but we need to find the right person to do it. We don’t want to abuse some cheap effects. As I said before, when we saw the picture of the real patients, those are stronger than any other horror picture I’ve seen. We want the video to be just like that. We want it to be very realistic and based more on the strength of the images than on some weird effect or light or whatever. We want everything to be more about the photography and the way you capture the images. That has to be strong.

I see you have a US tour coming up, but do you know when you’ll be back in the UK?

Cristina: Hopefully in the fall, because we’re playing in The Philippines and in China for the first time at the end of the month and the beginning of May, and then we’ll be in the US for some headlining gigs and some with Halestorm. At the end of that month the album will be released, then we’ll come back to Europe for some summer festival and we’ll be planning stuff for the fall, but we don’t have a schedule yet. Hopefully we can squeeze the UK in, possible during the summer. We don’t know yet.

Andrea: It’s going to be either in the summer for maybe one festival, or we’re going to come back for sure in the fall for a full European tour.

Cristina: It will be this year or next year, I believe.

Andrea: It will be before the end of the year, I think.

We’ve got to wrap things up there, is there anything else you’d like to say?

Cristina: I hope that people will understand the record and that they will understand that there’s a lot in it, and it’s deeper than it might seem from the first look or listen. So, I hope that they will understand everything of it because it is definitely a trip worth taking.

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Posted in 2016, Interviews | Comments (0)

My Dying Bride @ Islington Assembly Hall, London

April 21st, 2016

My Dying Bride + Oceans of Slumber + 40 Watt Sun

@ Islington Assembly Hall

31st March 2016

Review by Jacob Ovington

Photography by Graham Hilling

My Dying Bride

My Dying Bride

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