Angra, Firewind, Power Quest - French Tour 2007

Event: Angra - French Tour 2007
Written by: wrathchild
Published: 21.03.2007


Angra - French Tour 2007 by Jeff (20)

Angra performed 7 shows in France to celebrate their 15th anniversary and to promote their latest release, Aurora Consurgens. Fortunately, we could attend 3 of those concerts so this report should give you a precise idea of what happened on that tour.

Collin: Lyon (Feb 22)
wrathchild: Bordeaux (Feb 24)
Jeff: Toulouse (Feb 25)
Band profiles: Power Quest, Firewind, Angra

Power Quest

I arrived at the venue a bit late. I live right beside it and thought I could hear whether the show was about to start. As a matter of fact I could not, so I missed most of Power Quest's set. That's not really a problem since I found what I saw a bit repetitive, even if not disagreeable. Just another run-of-the-mill European power metal, nothing outstanding, nothing really bad.

You can guess it just by reading their name, Power Quest play basic power metal and nothing more. While I wouldn't listen to their albums, I must admit they were very good openers that evening. The fact their songs aren't very complex was a good way to get used to the overall sound in the venue. And their attitude was pleasant, so that was a good start.

To begin this evening, we had the opportunity to see the performance of some young British guys, Power Quest. Let's be honest, their show and their power metal were a bit cliché but actually, the band was full of energy and even if nobody probably knew them, they got a lot of positive reactions. Technical, with some good choruses and melodies, the music of Power Quest was actually a good way to begin this evening. We will see if they're able to confirm these feelings in the future…

Power Quest


Firewind then plainly kicked my ass. I had never listened to this band and was pleasantly surprised to find out that this is the type of power metal I can stand. This is still not something I would buy but, as for bands like Winterlong, I can take some of it from time to time. Their show was strangely fetching and compelling, of the type that leaves your mouth agape and asking for more. The rest of the audience seemed to think likewise since the band was summoned for an encore at the end of their set.
Firewind played for 45 minutes, mainly songs from their latest album if I'm not mistaken. The sound was excellent - unlike Angra as we shall see a bit further on - the vocalist was fine but the most amazing were the two guitarists, the famous Gus G (Dream Evil, Nightrage) Bob Katsionis (Septic Flesh, Nightfall, Imaginery). Those two were absolutely outstanding all along, fighting guitar solo duels, shredding, launching great riff after great riff. Then came the best part of the show and the only track I remember: the instrumental "The Fire & The Fury" and its thrash riff à la Annihilator. For the anecdote, Katsionis played two solos at the same time during this song, one hand on the guitar and one on the keyboards. That really made my day.

Next: Firewind. I wasn't really impressed by their new album, Allegiance, so I wasn't expecting to enjoy this show a lot. I was wrong, the band was great! And I guess I wasn't the only one to be surprised among the audience. I can't tell you a lot on the setlist but I remember they played their new hit song, "Falling To Pieces" and some more from their latest album.

Firewind was the second band to open for Angra. These guys from Greece aren't newcomers, they all already played in famous bands like Septic Flesh (Bob Katsionis), Dream Evil (Gus G) or Helloween (Mark Cross) to give a few names. And it was really impressive (I could even say that they were maybe better than Angra). With a sweet mix of power and heavy metal, and a cool but incredible attitude full of class and energy on stage, the five dudes knew how to catch the attention of the crowd and in fact, it seemed that a lot of people were there to see them. I didn't know the songs of the band but I enjoyed a lot their performance and I hope that I will be able to see them again soon.



Last time I saw Angra was two years ago in Paris for the Temple Of Shadows tour and they were absolutely great. I expected a lot. I've been utterly disappointed. Yet it started out brilliantly with "Unfinished Allegro" and "Carry On", a song I love enough to forget the crappy sound. Things kind of collapsed afterwards. The sound didn't get any better. Edu Falaschi may be a nice guy, but either he doesn't have any vocal capabilities or the sound guys still have not understood that the vocals are quite important for such a band. Thing is, we didn't hear him at all except on ballads.
The tracks of "Aurora Consurgens" are not that good live (except "Salvation: Suicide"). I must say that the setlist was not so good anyway. Call me a nostalgic prick, but how on earth can Angra not play "Carolina IV" and call that a complete show? To me, it's a bit as if Iron Maiden did not play "Number Of The Beast" for example.
The show had good moments though. The old songs such as "Z.I.T.O.", "Nothing To Say", "Wings Of Reality" were catchy as hell and with the crowd singing all along. So were "Rebirth" and "Spread Your Fire" for example. And the last encore when the band switched positions (Falaschi on the guitar, Bittencourt then Loureiro singing) and played "Smoke On the Water" and "Come Together" (The Beatles).

Angra played almost two hours, the audience was very present (though not really objective, I heard cries of "best show ever" when I left - yeah, right) and yet something was missing. Something going beyond the mere and usual setlist complaints and the sound problems. The band seemed old, tired, almost 'not there' if you see what I mean. They looked as if they had just switched on the automatic pilot, as if this was just something they wanted to get over with. The show missed this little sparkle of craziness, of communion, simply of fun that you can rightfully expect when a band is celebrating its 15 years of existence. I didn't feel any of that, which is why I am going to forget about this show as soon as I finish typing.

I have to tell you that I attended my first two metal concerts in 1999, on Angra's Fireworks tour, and it was amazing, mostly because the audience was singing every song with passion! After they toured France with "Holy Land", the band clearly converted a lot of French people into real fans. And then they split... I saw Shaaman once and I could enjoy those crazy moments again for one more night. I also attended an acoustic show of the new Angra, in 2004 (at Raismesfest), but of course, this show was special so I couldn't expect the same thing to happen.
That's why I was expecting a lot from this show in Bordeaux, especially since it was for their 15th anniversary and that they had told us in an interview: "We will play old songs that we don't play a lot in general."
Everything started perfectly, with the band playing "Carry On" after the introduction track ("Unfinished Allegro") stopped. Edu Falaschi's voice was hard to catch at first... Nevertheless, he could count on the crowd to compensate for that. As I was in front of Kiko Loureiro, I could fully appreciate his guitar playing skills: he's playing with such ease it's disconcerting. And while I was still staring at his fingers, yelling the lyrics as much as I could, they stopped the song and switch to "Nova Era". How irritating for the nostalgic fan I am... But that's excusable and it wasn't that bad musically speaking. After all, "Nova Era" is a good song, I had fun while they played it. I could notice that Felipe Andreoli is a hell of a bassist, really impressive (and more was to come, later) but unfortunately he looks bored all the time. Never a smile or a token of satisfaction, a bit as if was just here to do his job and nothing more. At least he does the job perfectly! Rafael Bittencourt was a bit distant too. On the contrary, Edu was quite active on stage, always bending backward when singing, etc. He's clearly not as charismatic as his predecessor used to be, but he's trying his best, that's good.
As the show went on, I was waiting for those old songs, since the new albums just don't do it for me (they're excellent power metal albums but I fail to enjoy them as much as the old ones). Finally, after a few songs from "Aurora Consurgens" and "Temple Of Shadows", Edu said they'd be playing a song the band never played on tour since the split. That song was "Wings Of Reality" from the Fireworks album, and I must say it was a good surprise. Edu's rendition was fine though the crowd was not participating as much as on the same song in 1999. Hopefully, the band continued with "Z.I.T.O.", one of their classic songs from the old era where Rafael and Kiko have some great and majestic soloing to do.
Then, before the encore, we had several songs from "Rebirth" ("Heroes Of Sand", "Rebirth"), Temple Of Shadows (Angels And Demons) and Aurora Consurgens ("Ego Painted Grey", "Course Of Nature") and only one old song, the mandatory "Nothing To Say."

The band returned for an encore with Spread Your Fire, a fast song that had some people in the crowd move a bit too much for a few minutes. After that we finally got something special - cause so far, that 15th anniversary looked more like a typical last album tour. Kiko took the mic and talked to the audience in French, asking for us to sing "Happy Birthday". He then introduced the band that way: Edu and Felipe: guitarists - Aquiles: bassist - Rafael: singer - Kiko: drummer. And the song was Deep Purple's classic: "Smoke On The Water."
Afterwards, new changes in the lineup: Edu and Rafael: guitarists - Aquiles: bassist - Kiko: singer - Felipe: drummer. They played "Come Together", originally written by The Beatles. Needless to say that was fun to watch, and that the musicians seemed to enjoy it a lot (especially Aquiles Priester, who even went playing the bass in the crowd, while Felipe proved to be an excellent guitarist and drummer, still without smiling).

And this is how it ended, leaving me with a bitter disappointment. Betrayed, fooled and naive, that's how I felt after the show, which was good, perhaps even very good but definitely not what I was promised. "We will play old songs that we don't play a lot in general," that's what they said... Well, only 4 old songs and only one of them isn't played on a regular basis. But the most important is that I never felt like I did in the old days. The audience wasn't as great as it was years ago, despite the show being sold out. It seems like the audience also suffered from their split: I believe many people were here to relive the past while others were happy hearing new songs. In fact, I found that the crowd was slightly older than usual, with less kids and teens, so...

Angra played a long set of two hours of music to close the chapter, and to be honest, for an anniversary party, it was a bit disappointing. First, we got (as always) some sound problems with the voice of Edu and it was extremely hard for us to hear him. It was better later but I don't know, maybe the band was a bit tired or something (it was the last date of a long tour in France) but they were a lot better two years ago for the Temple Of Shadows tour. They promised to play a lot of old songs and we got some surprises, yes, but all in all it was more oriented toward the last albums than anything else. They didn't play "Carolina IV" and yeah even if it was a nice show, it lacked a bit of joy and power.

But! We had a really cool final. During all the tour, the guys of Angra played two covers at the end of the show, "Smoke on The Water" and "Come Together." The originality of those covers came from the fact Kiko was the drummer, Edu and Felipe the guitarists, Aquiles the bassist and Rafael the singer (and damn, he was a good one!). It was really funny and the band had - for the only time in France - even invited the two other bands for a friendly and funny jam. The final was fun and also impressive (it was cool to see the other musical abilities of the guys) even if of course the guys of Angra were really good during the whole concert. It was an original way to finish this show, too bad that the first part of the concert was good but not really exceptional (I was probably expecting something too big I think…).

In the end, the show in Toulouse was pleasant. We saw three really good bands and we had a nice ambiance. Though of course, like me, a lot of people were expecting something a bit better probably. That's not a problem, Angra is a good band anyway and I'm sure that their next tour will be a bit better. So if they play in your town, you should go and see them. After all, "Carry On", "Nothing To Say" or "Spread Your Fire" and all their other hits are killers when performed live.


Unfinished Allegro
Carry On
Nova Era
Voice Commanding You
Waiting Silence
Wings Of Reality
Heroes Of Sand
Ego Painted Grey
Nothing To Say
Angels And Demons
Salvation: Suicide
Course Of Nature

Spread Your Fire
Smoke On The Water (Deep Purple)
Come Together (The Beatles)

All photos taken by Jeff in Toulouse, please don't use without permission.
Many thanks to Julien of K Productions!



Comments: 6   Visited by: 19 users
21.03.2007 - 13:45
Baz Anderson
well you know.. you've all see Angra before, I havent. they seem to like France.. the last time they came here was for one show in London back in 2004!! before that I dont know when it would have been.. years..

still.. that was enjoyable to read - especially because it was the opinions of three people from three different shows.
it seems the sound was a bad thing in all three though.. you would have thought they would have sorted it out or something. I've only experienced one show with bad sound (Savage Circus) and that was really annoying because it could have been so much better - I'm sure its the same here!

oh well.. the setlist seems decent enough to me.. I really like the 'Rebith' and 'Temple Of Shadows' albums, possibly more then the old ones (dont kill me.. hahaha) but I guess you bunch saw them with the old line-up and were expecting something different

and yeh! I've seen Power Quest before!! woo!! haha - they are fun to watch live but lacking a bit on the CDs..

nice review
21.03.2007 - 13:58
Retired Staff
The fact that we get a review from three different points of view (plus from three different shows), makes it indeed a very interesting CR.
However, I have the feeling the three of you were all in all rather disappointed with the Angra gig itself.

Anyway, great review guys!
(...Although the Firewind comments are a bit disproportionately short. I was really looking forward to their review actually)
Your favorite band sucks.
21.03.2007 - 14:33
Written by Thryce on 21.03.2007 at 13:58

(...Although the Firewind comments are a bit disproportionately short. I was really looking forward to their review actually)

Well, I really don't know what to say. It was a rather "normal" concert, with good music and musicians. The singer threw some water in the crowd, that was kind of refreshing

Oh, and speaking of water and singers, Edu has the ability to spit water in the air. He loves that actually, perhaps a bit too much
La belleza no reside en lo que puedas crear, sino en lo que eres capaz de transmitir
Beauty resides not in what you're able to create, but in what you're able to communicate

Txus, Mägo De Oz
21.03.2007 - 17:01
Fierce Deity
Come Together? Hm, that's nice!
I was wondering if I was wrong about not going in their last show here, but the reviews made even more sad/angry about Angra.

Oh, and that's a very nice CR.
24.03.2007 - 16:55
Advice Troll
Yeah, I've read somewhere that Bob Katsionis plays guitar too in the shows, but playing both guitar and keyboards at the same time must be really great. I'm looking forward to see them this summer! Wohoo!
Bitch! Please
28.06.2007 - 22:09
Account deleted
Angra and Power Quest togheter !!! ... two of my favorite bands
"I wet myself"

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