Date: Thursday April 22nd, 2010
Place: Metropolis in Montreal
Bands: Amon Amarth + Eluveitie + Holy Grail
Tour name: Twilight of the Thunder God Tour II
Do you ever get the feeling that some bands are just fillers for other big bands? Well that’s what happened with Holy Grail. If you’re looking for an original power metal band, don’t look here. They look like a blend of Helloween, Stratovarius and Gamma Ray but are worse than all of them. I’ll admit I don’t like power metal but they managed to give somewhat of a nice performance onstage. The singer asked during the show if we liked fast songs and played his songs in such a manner that looked a lot like “Speed of Light” from Stratovarius. I’m glad they didn’t play more than 25 minutes. (A side note, Holy Grail is formed from the leftovers of White Wizzard.)This is my second time seeing Eluveitie, they came last year for their album “Evocation I: The Arcane Dominion” (which wasn’t as good as the two first albums in my opinion). This time they were touring for their latest release “Everything Remains (As It Never Was)” (JDeathscript Review) and he was very jealous I was able to attend this blessed event). I really liked this album so I was pretty excited to see them again. It’s kind of weird to see a band with 8 musicians, including a bagpipe player and another on a hurdy gurdy. You’re might be asking yourself ‘what's a hurdy gurdy?’ Well, it’s this. Definitely not something you see everyday.
The sound was excellent and you could hear all the instruments pretty clearly. I really liked the intensity that Christian "Chrigel" Glanzmann brought to the show. They played songs mostly from their latest release but some older songs like “Inis Mona” and “Tegernakô” made the set list. I can’t say one bad thing about their performance – they exceeded all my expectations. I recommend any fan of this band to go see them (and anybody else as well). My only complaint is that they were only able to play for 45 minutes.
Now the headliner, the mighty Amon Amarth! I’ve been told by some friends that Amon Amarth are real beasts on stage so I had high hopes in regards to their performance. They started the show with the title song from their latest album and tour “Twilight of the Thunder God” and it was a great way to start their show! The moshing started immediately and continued during the rest of the show. What a great presence this band has on stage! You feel like you’re battling with a mighty Norse divinity. They played songs like “Guardians of Asgaard” from their latest release and others like “Runes to my Memory” and “The Valkyries Ride” from their previous albums. A side note, I want to mention what a nice guy singer Johan Hegg is. He said a few words in French, told us to be careful in the mosh pit, that he didn’t want anybody to get hurt and then how much he liked being in Montreal. That’s pretty unexpected from a guy who you think of as a big, mighty Viking. I’m going to give an honourable mention to the drummer who kept pummelling his double bass drum all the evening long. This show was excellent and my favourite part was the song “Cry of the Black Birds”. They made the intro an “encore” and the effects with light was simply amazing – everything was blue and you could see the shadow of Johan Hegg on the stage waiting for the song to start.
Final thoughts: I was disappointed by the opening ‘filler’ band Holy Grail, but the rest of the show was excellent. I had a lot of fun and recommend seeing the last two bands live. I would give an edge to Amon Amarth for their performance but by only a small margin because Eluveitie’s performance very good as well.