The Haunted – headline act
Exit Wounds Scandinavian Tour 2014
Dead Soul – support act
Kulturbolaget, Malmo, Sweden
4/10 – 2014
Live review and pictures by: Anders Sandvall
Back in 2012 singer Peter Dolving left The Haunted for the second time. The search for a new singer began right away. At the end of the same year, drummer Per Moller Jensen and guitarist Anders Bjorler also left the band. It was hard times for The Haunted and the only remaining members Patrik Jensen and Jonas Bjorling began the search for almost an entire new line-up. The problems were solved when the previous lead singer Marco Aro announced that he agreed to rejoin the band and back behind the drums can Adrian Erlandsson now be found. The only brand new member is the guitarist Ola Englund who’s never been involved in the band before. The band began the work the EP EYE OF THE STORM which was released in January 2014. The first live show the band did with the new line-up was at the 70000 tons of Metal at the end of January and in August was the studio album EXIT WOUNDS released. I’m really happy that The Haunted despite the set backs decided to continue as a band because I have always been a huge fan on the guys. The original intent was to do a shorter Scandinavian tour at the beginning of the summer but the release date for the album got delayed and instead the tour was scheduled to take place in the fall. The tour kicked off with three shows in Finland before it continued to Sweden and Norway. For some reason didn’t the band scheduled any shows in Denmark. Along on tour with The Haunted travels the support act Dead Soul which also comes from Sweden.
The Malmo show took of course place at the best club in the city – Kulturbolaget and I met up with Jensen, Aro and Erlandsson when they arrived to the venue a few hours early. The show took place on a Saturday which means that the band had to stick to the scheduled time because after the show was the nightclub going to kick off. Quite a lot of people was already in the club when I came and most of them hung out at the bar. There was no photopit so I was a bit worried of how the pictures was going to be, the fans of The Haunted are usually quite messy and hardcore. On stage I could see both bands gear already in place and it was only to wait for the support act to kick off the evening.
“Shattered Dreams” kicked off the show and the few fans clapped their hands when the band entered the stage. “Do Your Job” followed instantly and to my surprise I saw that the band had two drummers, two guitarists, one keyboard player but no one on bass guitar. Landelius thanked for the applause and said it was nice to be in Malmo warming up for The Haunted. Dead Soul are:
Anders Landelius – lead vocals
Ludvig Kennberg – drums
Joakim Ekstrand – gutiar
Martin Hjertstedt – drums
Henric Bellinger – keyboard
Nils Nielsen – guitar
“Burn Forever” followed and to be honest not much happened on the stage during the show. Everyone pretty much stood still on their spot and played their instruments. It’s pretty hard to describe the music of Deal Soul but maybe doom influenced by blues and progressive metal could be some kind of a hint. The music went really slow and the vocals mostly was some kind of chanting. It was a really different kind of experience to see Dead Soul and I had wished for it to be good but it wasn’t. “Kill the Past” and “Find That Man” was the name of the next two songs and the people looking at the band didn’t seem too enthusiastic either. Landelius once again thanked for the support and announced “They Kill Pay” that followed next. Landelius then said that it was the first time the band was about to play the next song live in the southerns parts of Sweden and it was “Lost My Will”. The singer thanked The Haunted for letting Dead Soul follow them on tour and announced “The Fool” as the last song for the night.
Dead Soul didn’t convince at all during their 45 minutes on stage. The music was weird and nothing really happened on the stage. The members were really good musicians but that doesn’t change the fact that the music was boring. Dead Soul maybe should be experienced on album and not live.
Do Your Job
Kill the Past
Find That Man
They Will Pay
Lost My Will
So was it time for the crew to change the gear, when I looked around in the venue I thought that more people should have shown up but the truth was that the show wasn’t sold out which was strange. I thought that more people should be interested in seeing the almost brand new line-up in The Haunted. After all, the band have always drawn a quite big crowd to their shows in Malmo. My expectations were crazy high on the show and it was only to wait for one of the best thrash metal bands of all time to enter the stage. At about 9.20 the music was silenced and the stage lit up, an intro was heard and it was time for the headline act.
The members all walked out on stage, putting on their instruments and fired off “Cutting Teeth” taken from the new album EXIT WOUNDS. The fans were with the band from the very start and jumped around throwing their fists in the air. Aro dominated the stage like never before and it was like he never left the band from the first place. “99” followed and Aro asked if the crowd was ready for a furious ride. A circle pit was formed in the middle of the crowd and at the front of the stage it was really crowded because everyone wanted to stand as close as they could to their heroes. The Haunted are:
Maro Aro – lead vocals
Jensen – guitar
Ola Englund – guitar
Jonas Bjorler – bass
Adrian Erlandsson – drums
Aro thanked the fans and said it was really nice to be back in Malmo again. He took a sip of water and then kicked off “Trespass” which made the crowd go crazy. Aro ran around on the stage during the entire show and it was obvious that he had a really good time. He used the ramp standing face to face with the fans and that really ignited the crowd. “The Flood” and “The Medication” continued the mad evening and it was full speed ahead from the very start. It was amazing to see drummer Erlandsson in action and he proved why he’s considered one of the best drummers in the world. He’s drum play was tight and hard hitting and he had an amazing co-operation with bass player Bjorler. But what else could be expected after having toured and working together for several years in At The Gates. Jensen’s guitar playing was as furious as always and the new comer Englund delivered some great riffs as expected. It was nice to see Aro behind the mic screaming out the vocals in The Haunted again and even though I really liked ex-singer Peter Dolving’s efforts in the band I have missed the ruthless stage persona that Aro presents. Not many singers are as talented and fearless as Aro is and the audience followed Aro’s moves and did what he told them to.
The crowd chanted Aro, Aro, Aro and he smiled looking really happy on stage. He said that the band had longed for doing this tour for really long and that the fans had no idea how much the band had missed being on stage and he thanked everyone for coming making this night really memorable. “Hollow Ground”, “Trendkiller” and “D.O.A” then followed and I was so impressed by seeing the band live in action again. It felt like the new members were a necessary fuel injection for Jensen and Bjorler and it was a long time since I saw The Haunted this hungry. The Haunted really showed that they are back to attack and still is a force to be reckoned with. Aro thanked for the applauds and said it was so nice to be playing for the loyal fans, he said the band has got a new album out called EWIT WOUNDS and that the next song “My Enemy” was taken from the album.
The bands music has changed into a more aggressive thrash metal compared to their previous sound and it’s a change that doesn’t hurt at all. Instead I find that the band has got a clearer focus with the new album and I applaud the new musical direction the band has moved to. The music isn’t that technical as before but more rawer and distinct and it’s a sound that really fits the new version of The Haunted. Aro seemed really happy with the circle pit that had formed on the floor and now came also fans up on stage and stage dived their way back into the pit. Aro asked if the fans wanted to hear more metal and fired off the amazing “All Against All” taken from the 2004 year album REVOLVER. Aro delivered the older songs with perfection and I didn’t feel any longing to hear Dolving shout them. Aro started to announce the song that made him join the band in the first place but was stopped by Jensen that said that there was one song before Aro’s favorite one. “Eye Of The Storm” was fired off first and again came fans up on stage jumping along with the band, the song is taken from the new album and it felt like the fans had listened to and taken the EXIT WOUNDS to their hearts. So was it time for Aro to sing the song that made him join The Haunted and he said it was the best song in the entire world. Are you ready Malmoe he shouted and blasted off “In Vein” taken from the selfitled debut album from 1998 which made the audience go mental. Jensen and Aro made some circle moves with their hands and “No Compromise” followed and the circle pit was brought back to life one more time.
So was it time for the band to play Erlandsson’s favorite song and it was “Time (Will Not Heal” that followed. The evening moved along perfectly with songs like “Guilt Trap” and “Dark Intentions” and the band seemed to be really happy with the warm and huge support they got from the fans in the club. The band had two songs more to play and the first one were taken from the album THE HAUNTED MADE ME DO IT and it was “Bury Your Dead”. The last song was the monumental “Hate Song” and Aro wanted the club to sing a long with him and the fans obeyed his wish and shouted along with Aro through the entire song. A few fans took the last opportunity to be stage diving and climbed up on the stage alongside with Aro.
That ended the show that lasted for about one hour and when I looked at the clock I was surprised that the time had gone so fast. After a few minutes of shouting for encores amongst the fans the band came out on stage again to please the fans once more. It was a sweaty bunch of guys that faced the crowd again and before they was going to play Aro said they had to get a sip of alcohol in order to make it for another few songs. He said it was time to un-wind and close the evening with a slow song and fired off “Undead”. The fans all exploded in a collective sweaty but happy circle pit and they squeezed the last minutes of the show together with the band. That song ended the 70 minutes of raw, pure and honest thrash metal and the band thanked their fans for creating an amazing show together.
The Haunted gave the fans nothing but a good time and I totally loved the show they brought to Malmoe. It was an amazing set list and the band seemed to be having fun on stage. It was so nice to see Aro back as singer and Erlandsson behind the drums again. Again, the new members brought a fuel injection to the band and I can’t even guess how far the band is going to go with this line-up back together again. The only complain I have is that the show was too short, I would have like to have heard more from the kings of thrash metal from Gothenburg, Sweden! 15 minutes after the show ended came the members (except Bjorler) down on the floor and to the merchandise stand where they spoke to the fans. Aro asked what I thought about the show and what could I say but it was the best show I’ve seen with the band ever. Aro replied with that this was the best show he had ever done in Malmoe so far. The audience was amazing he said.
All Against All
Eye Of The Storm
Time (Will Not Heal)
Bury Your Dead
Thanks to the head of Kulturbolaget Totte Lundgren for help with press/photo pass to the show.
Thanks to the security/staff for a nice treatment.