Review & Photography by Stephen Brophy for MPM
When this show got announced way back when it certainly brought with it a tingling of excitement. But this double Headliner bill has plenty of other stuff going for it, sharing the spotlight are the always powerful and energetic Ensiferum with support from Germany’s Nailed To Obscurity and Brunhilde.
The weather conditions meant a late Ferry today and a knock on delay to the show.
First out of the box tonight are Brunhilde, a female fronted Heavy Metal band and sadly, they just weren’t a good fit for this line-up, so that certainly didn’t help them this time around.
The riffs began to sound very samey after a few songs and to these ears it was a bit one paced, but on a different bill with a different crowd it may have worked better.
Nailed To Obscurity
Things stepped up a few gears as soon as these guys hit the stage, it was noticeable not only in the increased size of the crowd but also by the atmosphere and volume that now existed in the venue. Their brand of Doom laden Death Metal is just the thing to things moving.
Personally I would have preferred the cleaner vocals to be a bit louder in the mix tonight, but it certainly didn’t detract from the enjoyment of an excellent set.
People seem to forget that these guys have been around for 17 years, but they have a style that’s a little different to the norm and sounds great to me, 2019’s Black Frost is a top notch album and looking forward to a new release and hopefully a return to see us for a longer set.
This band have a bit an affinity with Ireland, they always have, I don’t know it it’s the Folk kindred spirits or the Guiness, but they always love playing Dublin, and the shows are always excellent, but tonight they are on another level, I think this is the best show I’ve seen them play in Ireland, the energy just exploded in the room and it was just a rollercoaster of a set from start to finish.
What’s more everything is done with a broad smile on their faces, if you ever need a pick me up this is a band I’d highly recommend. The sound, the lighting, everything was spot on and as for the set itself, great balance covering their career and showcasing the most recent release, 2020’s Thalassic.
Whether it’s Petri commanding the center of the stage or Markus (who’s grin never left his face the whole set) both making a great guitar combo, or Sami like a whirlwind around the stage, there’s something to look at all the time, tonnes of engagement with the crowd who lap it up and return waves of enegy in response, the venue may not be full, but a full floor is giving everything they have.
With the Battle Hymns flowing there was certainly a Sword or two being waved in unison, The new tracks are spot on live and fit perfectly into the set and closing with “From Afar” leaves everyone wanting more, Ensiferum will be back, but they will find it hard to top this one. This is what music fans have been missing.
This one has been a very long time coming with Dark Tranquility finally making their much awaited Irish live debut, it’s no surprise that Mikael mentions it a few times through the night, but it did need to be pointed, that were they thinking no visiting us before.
The Floor is packed and after being launched into high gear by their co-headliner the pit was getting more active as the songs progressed. All I can say is bloody hell, personally I’ve been a fan of the band for many years and this was just awesome to see them in my home town. Again the band are really into the show and the room is rocking.
The music, when you hear a track like Forward Momentum live you just step back for a moment and nod your head and smile, pure class, the band for me transcend a number of genres, but whatever style they are playing/using the songs are really well crafted and sound brilliant live.
Mikael and the guys are taking nothing for granted at this show and they dip in and out of old and new songs, the new album tracks just like Ensiferum slot perfectly into the set, and it’s great to hear them in a live arena.
Other standouts for me tonight are “Ghost Town” and the epic “Lost In Apathy”, the Swedes seem to be surprised by the reaction they have stirred, but they shouldn’t be, when it take you 33 years to visit a Country there will be a lot of pent up joy in the room.
Again, the sound is excellent and it really helps the music to reach every corner of the room. Both band and fans clearly want more and they are just going to have to come back to satisfy the hunger.
Brilliant set and a really class night overall, If you get a chance to see this package anywhere else on this Tour do yourself a favour and grab a ticket.