Today the rain god does not mean well for the kick-off of the Eisheiligen Nacht (English: Night of the Ice Saints) tour and gives its visitors wet feet. At least there is no snow or glazed frost! The show today is the first of nine concerts, which will be criss-crossing Germany. The only show in Switzerland at the venue Z7 is well filled with young and old metal fans. The tour, which was organized by Subway to Sally, has to break through a severe chaos at the beginning and hence, the time schedule is quite lagging behind. However, at least the major part is set up when the first people are being admitted and only here and there, the final fine-tuning during the sound check is missing.
Lord of the Lost
Being announced by Eric Fish himself, who has something to say about every band that will be performing tonight, the show starts with Lord of the Helmets… um Lost. The German band around singer Chris Harms has become one of the most popular newcomer bands of the past years, although one cannot speak of newcomers anymore when taking into account Harms’ stage experience with other bands. Musically the Goth rock band moves towards the commercial market and does not necessarily create new music but contrary to Stoneman, the Swiss representatives of this genre, Lord of the Lost was at the right place at the right time and has been quite successful right from the beginning, not least thanks to its renowned singer Chris. The band that merely consists of male members today does have good songs, which unfortunately are not being really brought to the fore tonight due to the poorly mixed sound. As a result, the singer’s voice is hardly audible and the melodies get lost, so after a playtime of thirty minutes I have to say: Thanks a lot but I’ve had enough! However, the announcement of the band’s upcoming headliner tour in Switzerland in 2014 gained much applause.
The second act of tonight’s program is Lordi, which is intelligible to me since it is a matter of fact that these little monsters have by far achieved more than their compatriots Korpiklaani. The reason behind this could be their extravagant costumes and elaborate live show. Fortunately, they are allowed to play for fifty minutes during which the Finns give everything they have. Aside from familiar songs such as “Hard Rock Hallelujah”, “Get Heavy” or “Would You Love A Monster Man?”, they also play “Blood Red Sandman”. For this song, Mr Lordi comes on stage dressed up as Evil Santa and keeps throwing the band’s tour t-shirts into the audience. This band is definitely not stingy and also numerous guitar picks find their way into the excited crowd of fans. As a feature of this tour, a new song is being introduced that hasn’t been played live yet: “Chainsaw Buffet”. During the song, Mr Lordi invites one of his diligent helpers behind and on stage for a candlelight dinner and serves her plenty of raw delicacies that cause her nausea. At the end, she is being knocked out with Lordi’s axe, which causes a copious amount of artificial blood to seep out of the young lady’s mouth. As usual, Mr Lordi plays the central character of the show. In addition to that, the mandatory stage hopping of mummy arms shall not be forgotten, during which he incurred a leg injury. Well, in old age you get little ailments, even if you are a bandaged mummy already. However, it was as always a brilliant show from the little monsters from Finland!
Since the band’s last gig at Z7, the line-up has changed again; there are two new faces on the violin and on the accordion. However, the violinist will only be playing on this tour. As usual, the guys around Jonne and Cane remain in the background and leave the show elements to these two guys, who accept this with pleasure. Jonne swirls and dances over the stage and sings in his usual way – and not as tipsily as last time. He obviously enjoys that the audience is wholeheartedly and unreservedly alongside him and sings along, may it be during “Vodka” or one of the band’s other Humppa songs. Jonne, whose dreadlocks will soon be longer than Tomi Joutsen’s, performs the songs with a big grin on his face and obviously enjoys to be celebrated by the crowd in Pratteln. He would have liked to play even more songs but the time was up far too soon and thus, the band has to leave the stage sooner than desired. The performance of tonight’s organizers is still pending.
Subway to Sally
Due to the pyrotechnic effects that were being performed right at the beginning of the show, I had to stop taking photos because my eyes do not tolerate these kind of lights and since the band is not really my cup of tea, I remain in the background and I’ll just listen to the first bars. The sound is suddenly pristine; however, that doesn’t really improve things. After Mr Fish sings “Ich bin unwiderstehlich” (English: I am irresistible), my resistance not to leave the venue before the end has been broken. During “Sieben” (English: Seven) I, like numerous other visitors, decide to take a run and therefore end the evening before its official ending.
In my mind, the Finns were definitely a nose ahead of the other bands that also performed tonight. Lord of the Lost has done better shows in the past and Subway to Sally simply isn’t everyone’s taste. Lordi and Korpiklaani, however, were awesome as usual. A ticket for this tour would definitely make a good Christmas present.