Mini Tour Denmark 2019
The Sandmen – support act
12/4 – 2019
Live review and pictures by: Anders Sandvall
After a short hiatus, Danish hard rock act D.A.D has back and is out on a short tour through Denmark. During their break the band have played live but they haven’t released a studio album for several years; in fact their latest studio effort was released back in 2011, so it’s long overdue for the guys to unveil some new material. Back in October 2018 the guys announced that they were working on a new album. In March the first single called “Burning Star”, backed with “A Prayer for the Loud” arrived with the new album scheduled to hit streets at the end of May. The October announcement also included the fact that the band would be playing three Danish shows this April, back by The Sandmen. The shows sold out quickly so I swiftly booked my tickets to see the last show, at KB Hallen in the band’s hometown, Copenhagen.
The venue was built back in 1938 but sadly burnt down in September 2011. For a while it was uncertain what would become of the old sports hall. Luckily it was rebuilt and re-opened in January 2019, holding about 5,000 people for shows. Otherwise, the hall is used for badminton, basketball, tennis, and volleyball activities. A long row of iconic bands like The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Janis Joplin, Skid Row, L.A. Guns, Motley Cure, Def Leppard, and Motörhead have performed there.
The Friday show was totally sold out which was fun because it’s a really cool thing to see the D.A.D. perform in their home country; the Danish crowd is usually absolutely mad when they see them on stage. Support act The Sandmen is also a Danish band, formed back in 1985. They were active for a decade before they being initially put to rest. During 2003 the band made a comeback with some line-up changes.
The show was going to begin at 8 o’clock with doors opening at 6.30. I arrived to the venue about one hour prior to try and get around some construction on the way there. A few fans had already gathered outside and as the doors opened we got inside quickly where beverage sales greeted me in the lobby. The place felt a bit bigger than I remembered and along the sides of the concert hall balconies were added. I have to say the venue looked really nice and fresh. More and more people arrived and suddenly it was time for the support act to kick off the evening,
With only their gear on stage, the band entered from both sides and kicked off the show straight away. The members looked a bit nervous and stood solid on their spots, except for the singer who walked out on the ramp in the middle of the stage a little bit. The singer thanked for the fans for their support saying if the fans wanted to see and hear more from the band they were going to perform at Vega the upcoming Saturday. To me, the rock n’ roll show felt boring; their music didn’t do much for me. To be fair, I’d never heard their music before this show.
It also felt like not many in the crowd cared too much for the band and luckily the show ended after 35 minutes. The show was really boring but it was obvious that the band were skilled musicians. The singer had a really weak voice and was the weakest link in the band. I’m not going to cry over the fact that I missed the hay day of The Sandmen.
The back curtain was raised and unveiled D.A.D.’s gear with a large video screen in the middle and two smaller ones on each side. On both sides of stage, as well as behind the drums, were ramps for the band to run around on. The venue filled up with people and I could tell many were eager to hear which songs the band would play, as well as which of his many bass guitars Stig Pedersen would use – the excitement in the air was palpable! Luckily the crew quickly prepped the stage and after about 30 minutes we were ready to go.
The show opened with new song “Burning Star”, earning the band a really warm welcome from the fans. It was full speed ahead as all of the band members seemed happy to be on stage. “Musical Chairs” followed and it felt inspiring to hear two new songs right at the beginning. As always the line up is made of:
Jesper Binzer – lead vocals, guitar
Jacob Binzer – lead guitar
Stig “Stigge Nasty” Pedersen – bass, vocals
Laust Sonne – drums
Jesper thanked the fans for their support and fired off “Jihad” from NO FUEL LEFT FOR THE PILGRIMS, which made the fans explode. As everyone knows, this song is one of the band’s most treasured pieces and it’s always a blast to hear it live. The classic album is from 1989 and has sold 275,000 copies in Denmark alone, which is pretty impressive. Live, this song used to be extended because of the long guitar solo by Jacob, but not this time. Jesper once again thanked the fans saying it’s nice to be in Copenhagen. Jesper asked drummer Sonne if he thought they should continue on with the show, of course Sonne answered by firing off “A New Age Moving In” taken from 2011’s DIC.NII.LAN.DAFT.ERD.ARK. The sound system and lights worked brilliantly and the stage was really wide so the members had a lot of space to move around on.
“Point of View” followed and I couldn’t help but be impressed by how amazing the members work together to get the crowd going and how well-oiled a live machine they are. Pedersen used a few of his many bass guitars but he looked a little tired on stage and didn’t move around as much as the rest. He wasn’t dressed up as he used to; in the past he’s appeared as Zorro, a gladiator, and a pilot among many others, but this night he was himself.
The next song was kicked off by Sonne who took off his jacket. “Are you ready?”, Jesper asked. “Yes, now I’m ready”, Sonne said. The song that followed was “Everything Glows” which once again blew the roof off the place. “OK”, Jesper said, “we have already played a few new songs but we have a few more for you, here is “A Prayer for the Loud”. Although it’s the b-side on the vinyl version of “Burning Star”, the song is not featured on Spotify. Already a few songs into the show the band already pulled off three new songs which all sounds really promising.
The ballad “Something Good” followed in which Jesper invited the fans to sing along with him in the chorus while the screens showed the band in real time. The excellent “Grow or Pay” followed, featuring a long guitar solo by Jacob. Yes, we all know he’s great on guitar but we don’t need to hear these long solos every show. While Jacob changed guitar, Jesper said it was time for another new song in “The Sky is Made of Blues”. It felt like the fans appreciated the new songs. “Thanks!”, Jesper said and asked if the fans liked the new song. He wasn’t happy that everyone failed to answer and said to Sonne, “I think that only 2% liked the new song”. “No Jesper, a few more like the song”, Sonne answered. “Well, OK ladies and gentlemen”, Jesper continued, “Here comes a song sung by Stigge Nasty”. Everyone probably thought it was going to be “Riding With Sue” but no, Stigge took on the old piece “Jackie O” which was a great surprise. It later turned into “Riding With Sue” and the two songs became a medley. I’d have preferred to hear him sing only “Jackie O”, but I guess “Riding With Sue” is a song he has to sing otherwise the fans will get angry. It was fun to hear him sing, he’s very good, and I think he should use his voice more as it blends really well with Jesper’s.
“It’s time for another new song”, Jesper said, “here comes “Nothing Ever Changes”. The band’s most boring song, “Reconstrucdead” from the grungy 1995 album HELPYOURSELFISH followed, but it seemed like the fans liked it. Jesper encouraged everyone to sing along with him which really extended the song. Jesper wanted the fans to clap for Sonne because now it was his time to shine and he fired off an amazing drum solo in which he included some thrash metal drumming. It was followed instantly by “Monster Philosophy”. Pedersen now brought out his latest bass guitar which looked like an iphone and was really cool, it also had a touchscreen which showed the band on it. Jesper wanted to see everyone clap their hands. “You got a monster…”, he shouted and then the crowd shouted, “philosophy” back at him. That was done a few times until Jesper was satisfied, before they played yet another new song in “No Doubt About That” in which Jesper once again wanted to see everyone clap their hands.
Jesper encouraged the fans to shout “come on Laust”, a few times. Then it was time to chant a second time around where he wanted the fans to shout “Come on Laust, kill your drums!” As you can imagine it all took a while to execute and it all ended up in a really long drum solo all together. Finally the song could proceed and next up on the set list was “I Want What She’s Got” that ended the ordinary set of the show.
The fans shouted for encores and the band shortly returned and fired off “Evil Twin”. Since the song is a personal favorite of mine, I was thrilled to hear it once again. When “Bad Craziness” followed, the euphoria among the fans was palpable. Pedersen had on his rocket-bass guitar and the entire crowd sang along from beginning to the end. Jesper asked if there was anyone in the crowd that was going to go to work tomorrow. “Not that many”, he said after the crowd answered him. “Good thing tomorrow is Saturday and we can sleep our fucking days away!” Of course, the next song was another of the band’s biggest hits in “Sleeping My Day Away”. The fans took care of the first verse on their own. I can’t count how many times I’ve heard the song through the years but it doesn’t matter, it’s still just as great as ever each time I hear it. A long guitar solo by Jacob has now become the standard for the band when they do the song live for many years now and this evening wasn’t any exception.
Pedersen and Sonne walked off stage leaving the two Binzer brothers with two acoustic guitars and mic stands at the end of the ramp where the brothers stood to the delight of the fans. It was time for “Laugh n’ a 1/2”; the sing along from the fans was deafening. It wasn’t the end of the show; it’s never over until the band has played “It’s After Dark” and that was the case this night. The rest of the members came back and Pedersen took on the lead vocals as the fans sang along at the top of their lungs. That personal favorite ended another great show from D.A.D.; the band was on stage for about 2 hours.
This was yet another majestic showing in how proper rock n’ roll music ought to be played. D.A.D. has always been, and always will be, one of my favorite acts. I think it was a bold move to incorporate 6 new songs into the set list; it made the show feel fresh and full of surprises. The new songs sounded promising but it’s hard to really tell when you hear them for the first time at the show. The guys should also get credit for dusting off “Jackie O”, it has been a long time since I heard that one live.
As always the guys were amazing on stage; they know exactly how to take on a crowd and get the fans in the right mood. The only thing I foudn missing was some extra participation from Pedersen, he felt a bit lack luster and seemed tired. I also missed some of the band’s pyro; it would have been cool to see Pedersen in his helmet that bursts into flames. I also would have liked to hear more songs from albums like SIMPATICO, SOFT DOGS, CALL OF THE WILD of DAD DRAWS A CIRCLE, otherwise the set list felt perfect. This shorter tour could maybe be a warm up for the album and upcoming tour later this year. If you have a chance to catch the guys live then make sure to go and see them, you’re in for a treat. A lot of festivals shows are already booked all over Europe, just look at the band’s homepage for more info about that.
Jihad No Fuel Left For The Pilgrims
A New Age Moving In
Point Of View
A Prayer For The Loud
Grow Or Pay
The Sky Is Made Of Blues
Jackie O/Riding With Sue Medley
Nothing Ever Changes
No Doubt About It
I Want What She’s Got
Sleeping My Day Away
Laugh n a ½
It’s After Dark
Thanks to Peter Sorensen at Beat Box Booking Denmark
for help with press/photo pass to the show.