Lordi / Reverse Grip / Wild Roads

Almost exactly 10 years ago Lordi played here at Z7 for the first time at the Wacken Road Show (April 17, 2003). Since then I have watched every gig of those Finns at this venue. They have always offered a great show, although there have been many changes in those 10 years. Especially in the line-up, only Lordi and Amen are the original members. Enary, Kalma and Kita I miss the most, but also the tragic death of Otus last year and the resignation of Awa have left a void. Therefore I am curious if the new line-up – which has not played together much yet – works out and which new show elements will be built around Mana and Hella. But first it´s time for the support acts.

Wild Roads
With those 2 shows as opener for Lordi, this young band from Tuscany, Italy, has now the opportunity to win over some more fans in Switzerland and Italy. They play Hard’n‘ Heavy, basically not bad but it all sounds too much alike. Their debut album, released last year, will probably receive a follow up soon, and I hope they will put more variety on it. Singer Michael Cavallini is using the way-too-high registers for my taste, but he does it well. Unfortunately their music does not quite fit Lordi´s. I don´t mind to get introduced to new bands, but in my opinion the musical styles and bands should match.

Reverse Grip
Those guys from Toronto, Canada, are no match either. Their logo on leather is a nice promotion idea, but it somehow their coolness seems a bit too forced. Musically they also cannot quite impress me, and I have to ask myself how they ended up on tour with Lordi? It was probably very expensive. I would say that basically the music works nicely, but they should work a bit more on their songs to create a more interesting set. Way too soon you felt slightly bored, it seemed that the same song was played twice or three times. Therefore rather take your time working on your style, and then you gonna be a smash hit.

With „To Beast or not to Beast“ Lordi have once again released a great album, the previous one I found pretty weak and disappointing. Yet the new album has plenty of song material a la „Would you love a Monsterman“. They start the show with a bit of a delay, and the setlinst contains many songs of the new album, e.g. „ The Riff“, „I’m the Best“ or „Schizo Doll“. Not quite my favorites, but those tracks seem to work nicely live on stage. The stage setting has changed a bit, new side-banners that are changed during the show, with skeletons as motives, and the kit of drummer Mana offers some new elements, like rotating discs in the bass drums, yet they are only put into action during his solo. Keyboard-lady Hella has probably the best gimmick: „wrapped“ into a cardboard box which imitates Barbie´s, even showing a similar logo „Scarbie“, this horror puppet surely sticks out even from her position in the back. But also the new costumes of Ox and Mr. Lordi offer new details. There must be an incredible amount of dedicated work behind it all.

There are not many new show elements – Lordi with butcher coat and severed limbs in a bucket, Lordi with moving wings, Lordi with a chainsaw that sprays water or with a skull that spits smoke. They have used that for years and could maybe change something. Some elements of Amen, like quoting from the book of the dead in a pharao costume, have been dropped. Instead, Hella and Mana have their moments to shine. The scary priest behind the drums is rising high and starts to levitate and the puppet performs a robot dance, after which she is beheaded – a great show effect. You cannot name it all, as there are so many cool elements to be watched, it´s always a great experience. And naturally the monsters perform a great show, once again. Although the set list could have been better, I would have enjoyed songs like „Kalmageddon“ or „Candy for the Cannibal“. After about 1 hour the show ends – what a pity, I think everybody would have enjoyed to see more. Some chosen ones had a short Meet & Greet afterwards, and I met Mr. Lordi for an interview – which you can read here soon.

Sandy Mahrer

Fresh Act editor, reports, reviews, photos - - - Favorite genres? - Hard Rock, Heavy Metal and Pop-Rock etc. Less Death, Black, Grind Core