Amorphis + Orphaned Land - Aschaffenburg, Germany, 14th November 2010

Event: Amorphis: Forging Europe Tour Pt. II
Written by: Promonex
Published: 24.12.2010

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Amorphis + Orphaned Land: Forging Europe Tour Pt. II - Aschaffenburg, Germany, 14 November 2010 by Promonex (36)
About a month after attending the Epica tour in my favourite venue I was again to visit the Colos-Saal in Aschaffenburg, Germany. Today's menu was almost tastier than the Epica package (musically speaking, not optically): Amorphis were touring Europe for the second time in support of their latest album Skyforger, but this time also with their new compilation Magic & Mayhem: Tales from the Early Years under their belt - a varied setlist seemed to be guaranteed. They were supported by Israeli prog metal phenomenon Orphaned Land and Finnish up-and-comers Ghost Brigade. Considering this brilliant constellation it was no surprise that the Colos-Saal was sold out again, even though a new week would start the next day.






Ghost Brigade were the openers of the night and tried to entangle the audience in their bleak and melancholic brand of Finnish metal. Last time I had seen them, exactly 365 days earlier on their tour with Paradise Lost and Samael, they easily achieved this goal by creating an immensely dense atmosphere and made headliners Paradise Lost look like amateurs. This time however there was no atmosphere coming across at all. This might also be due to the warmth in the sold-out venue, which just wasn't the best canvas for the coldness of their music to unfold. Other members of the audience even went as far as sensing the Ghosts' performance as arrogant: almost no light, almost no movement and the grim face of guitarist Wille Naukkarinen made the impression as though the band wanted to detach itself from the audience. For many others Ghost Brigade's formula of soft clean vocals, fierce harsh vocals and profound song structures in a low-key performance seemed to work very well though and was rewarded by plenty of applause.

Setlist: Deliberately, My Heart Is a Tomb, Into the Black Light, Lost in a Loop, Suffocated, 22:22 - Nihil, A Storm Inside








Coming up next were Orphaned Land, and the crowd response made it obvious that many people were here mainly for the Israeli band. Their progressive metal meets oriental sounds hybrid might have taken some time to convince the rest of the audience as well, but after a while almost everyone was cheering and clapping along. The band also seemed to have a lot of fun, at least guitarist Yossi Saharon was grinning ALL the time and singer Kobi Farhi was interacting a lot with the crowd. Unfortunately the same old "I'm not Jesus!" joke was part of his routine, which he has been pulling at (almost?) every gig in the past few months. Seriously man, it's getting ooooold!



But apart from this little annoyance the show was top-notch. The overall sound was just perfect and a lot heavier than the last time I've seen them, so that a lot of the band's energy came across and infected everyone in the room. Especially during "Sapari", the opening track of their newest album The Neverending Way of ORwarriOR, people were jumping and singing along, at least at the beginning. After a while only three rows, one transverse and two longitudinal, kept jumping along, which looked more like a Bomberman explosion pattern than anything else. The rest of the setlist was more on the progressive side until the band finished the set with the crowd pleaser "Norra El Norra", about two hours too early for my taste. For me they were the secret headliners of the night due to the brilliant sound and the boundless enthusiasm emanated by the band.

Setlist (order?): In Thy Never Ending Way, Barakah, Sapari, Birth of the Three, Olat Ha'tamid, From Broken Vessels, Ocean Land, The Kiss of Babylon, Norra El Norra








Finally the headliners of the night took the stage. Amorphis is a band with a varied history, from their beginnings as a death metal band over folk-influenced melodic death metal to the progressively tinged melodic metal of the recent years. On stage this was displayed by the backdrop of their latest album Skyforger and two flags bearing the cover of the band's newest compilation Magic & Mayhem: Tales from the Early Years. And with five songs from Skyforger and five songs from said compilation the setlist indeed covered most of the band's history.

But let's start at the beginning. The band was euphorically welcomed by the audience and started right off with a few songs from Skyforger, namely the title track, "Sky Is Mine" and the ballad "From the Heaven of My Heart." Singer Tomi Joutsen with his hair-dryer for a mic was the star of the show with his grandiose clean vocals, but the rare growls sounded absolutely tremendous, so that one could only look forward to the songs from their back catalogue. Most people were enjoying themselves already and I was surprised to see how many people were singing along to the songs from their newest album which, despite being relatively shallow in my opinion, has been gleefully embraced by almost everybody in the room.



At this point Tomi remarked that it felt like a Finnish sauna in the sold-out venue. To the regret of the ladies in the room (and to the comfort of the other half of the attendees) he didn't get rid of his clothes though, but started the journey into the past. After "The Smoke", from the band's first release with current singer Tomi Joutsen, Amorphis finally played the first song with only growls, namely "Song of the Troubled One" from their Elegy album. And as mentioned before these growls were absolutely divine! After a short intermission (dubbed "Karelia" on the setlist) it was time for the mighty "Exile of the Sons of Uisliu" from their debut album The Karelian Isthmus. I was anxious to see how all the Skyforger worshippers in the crowd would respond to the songs from Amorphis' early days and as expected the reactions were very restrained. I however was happy with the temporary shift of music to more extreme soundscapes and rather sad when they returned to the more recent years again afterwards. After another four songs from the last decade they finally played the all-time favourite "Black Winter Day" from the Tales from a Thousand Lakes album to a happy audience and disappeared from the stage afterwards.

Setlist: Skyforger, Sky Is Mine, From the Heaven of My Heart, Better Unborn, The Smoke, Song of the Troubled One, Exile of the Sons of Uisliu, Silent Waters, Alone, My Sun, Silver Bride, Black Winter Day



Of course people were wanting more and it didn't take long before their shouts for an encore triggered the intro of the next song. The band stayed on the same side of the extremity spectrum at first with "Into Hiding", also from the Tales album. The following "House of Sleep" had everyone in the room singing again, confirming the impression I had from the crowd. But then again, it is an awesome song! And finally both parties, fans of the extreme and those of the melodic incarnation of the band were reconciled when Amorphis closed the night with the folky, yet growled "My Kantele."

Encore: Into Hiding, House of Sleep, My Kantele



So after Amorphis finished their awesome set, Orphaned Land and Ghost Brigade were still at the merch stands, talked with the fans and let them take pictures. While Ghost Brigade haven't really given their all, Amorphis and Orphaned Land profited a lot from the great sound in the venue, with Orphaned Land being the clear winners of the night. I guess it's just a matter of time until Germany will see a tour of the Israelis as actual headliners.


Text and photos by Daniel "Promonex" Pereira of Metal Storm.
All rights reserved, do not use without permission.



 



Written on 24.12.2010 by
Promonex
Daniel "Promonex" Pereira loves to enthuse people with stuff he's enthusiastic about; as writer, photographer, promoter and DJ. Metal Storm staff since 2005.
More articles by Promonex ››




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Darkside Momo - 24.12.2010 at 01:39  
Nice report, I really would have liked to see OL again, and see Amorphis as well (I've never seen them yet), but well...

I like the Bomberman comparison too

Also, Song of the Troubled One, Exile of the Sons of Uisliu, and Alone in the same setlist? Whoa, 3 of my fav Amorphis songs.
Valentin B - 24.12.2010 at 02:25  
"I however was happy with the temporary shift of music to more extreme soundscapes and rather sad when they returned to the early years again afterwards."

i didn't quite get this, but anyway good review and i agree about the dude from Amorphis' vocals. definitely one of the best vocalists out there, his growls are so fucking epic they give me goosebumps, Amorphis really need to play more old stuff.
Promonex - 24.12.2010 at 02:31  
I don't think I'd make such a stupid mistake...
Darkside Momo - 24.12.2010 at 02:34  
Written by Promonex on 24.12.2010 at 02:31

I don't think I'd make such a stupid mistake...

of course you didn't
Risto - 25.12.2010 at 01:45  
Well written report, although I did spot a mistake. "The Smoke" is not on Skyforger as you wrote, it's on "Eclipse"
corrupt - 25.12.2010 at 02:28  
Written by Valentin B on 24.12.2010 at 02:25

"I however was happy with the temporary shift of music to more extreme soundscapes and rather sad when they returned to the early years again afterwards."

i didn't quite get this, but anyway good review and i agree about the dude from Amorphis' vocals. definitely one of the best vocalists out there, his growls are so fucking epic they give me goosebumps

Absolutely! Awesome clean vocals and awesome growls as well. I've seen this show in Hamburg a couple of weeks ago. Really cool shit all of it.
Promonex - 25.12.2010 at 15:57  
Written by Risto on 25.12.2010 at 01:45

Well written report, although I did spot a mistake. "The Smoke" is not on Skyforger as you wrote, it's on "Eclipse"

Ah yes, indeed. I got confused somewhere there as I was sure that they had played just as many songs from Skyforger as from Magic & Mayhem. "The Smoke" was the odd one out, so now the numbers are correct again (5 songs from each of the two releases). Thanks for the heads up!

@Momo: I knew you'd like the comparison

@Vale: Tomi is a great vocalist indeed as I was to witness live two times before, but at this particular gig his growls were just insanely majestic!
muska - 30.12.2010 at 06:05  
I have no idea why you consider Magic & Mayhem an album...
Promonex - 30.12.2010 at 15:31  
Written by muska on 30.12.2010 at 06:05

I have no idea why you consider Magic & Mayhem an album...

Hu? I've stated each time that it's a compilation. But it's their newest release and artists often want to promote their newest releases, therefore the emphasis on my hopes for a lot of old stuff from said compilation.
muska - 11.01.2011 at 19:50  
Quote:
Quote:

Ah yes, indeed. I got confused somewhere there as I was sure that they had played just as many songs from Skyforger as from Magic & Mayhem.


need i add more? you didn't state it's an album, but the implication is quite clear, whatever let the trolling come to an end
Abattoir - 11.01.2011 at 21:48  
I've been at this concert in our local area....mostly because of Ghost Brigade. And seeing them live was definitely one of the best experiences and moments from all of live shows I've attended...eventhough too short of course, yet memorable for sure. Great atmosphere, setlist, performance....everything was just utterly perfect in those 40 minutes.
Promonex - 12.01.2011 at 02:13  
Quote:
Quote:
Written by muska on 11.01.2011 at 19:50


Ah yes, indeed. I got confused somewhere there as I was sure that they had played just as many songs from Skyforger as from Magic & Mayhem.


need i add more? you didn't state it's an album, but the implication is quite clear, whatever let the trolling come to an end


What implication are you talking about? Did you actually read the article??

Quote:
[...] in support of their latest album Skyforger, but this time also with their new compilation Magic & Mayhem: Tales from the Early Years under their belt [...]


Quote:
[...] displayed by the backdrop of their latest album Skyforger and two flags bearing the cover of the band's newest compilation Magic & Mayhem: Tales from the Early Years. And with five songs from Skyforger and five songs from said compilation the setlist indeed covered most of the band's history.

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