Released: 2006, Metal Blade
When a band has been steadily releasing albums and EP’s for 10 years, it becomes a given that a live offering should be on the way. Not that every band that makes it 10 years should release live albums or DVD’s, there are tons of bands that have made it 10 years or more that shouldn’t even bother releasing studio albums anymore, but I digress. When you’re a bigger metal band, a live DVD or CD is pretty much mandatory by the time you’ve reached your 4th or 5th album. So for 2006 we have Amon Amarth’s deluxe DVD package, WRATH OF THE NORSEMEN. Amon Amarth certainly didn’t hold anything back with this DVD release as there are 3 DVD’s filled to the brim with live material, containing five different live sets that were played during 2004 and 2005.
The main course for the release comes from a 2005 performance in Cologne, Germany. The band playing a huge 21 song set, comprising quite possibly the longest extreme metal show I’ve probably ever heard of, spanning over 2 hours in length. The audio is top notch for sure while the video and camera work are impressive to say the least. Lots of cameras, lots of shots, and while there may be a bit too much of the quick editing going on, it’s incredibly fun to watch. The set list for this show is comprised of many fan favourites and it’s hard to say that your favourite track has been missed. The crowd is definitely into it and many times you can hear them almost as loud as the band.
The material comprising the other two DVD’s are culled from appearances at the Summer Breeze Festival 2005, Metal Blade’s RROOOOOOAAAARRR show in 2005, Wacken Open Air 2004, and the release part for FATE OF NORNS. The other shows are generally a little on the shorter side, at least compared to the main show. They aren’t recorded with as much polish as the main show either but they come off quite well and don’t fall into unbearable bootleg territory. While the set lists are somewhat similar, there are some nice variations here and there. The bonuses are almost as good as the main show in this case and more than a few times I’ve put the 2nd or 3rd DVD in instead of the 1st.
Amon Amarth’s foray into the DVD realm is a good one and it’s one that will not disappoint long time fans of the band as there’s more than enough live material to last you for quite a while, maybe even another 14 years.