09.09.2023 Rockfact Münchenstein, Switzerland
As we already reported in the CD review , Fire Rose have finally released another album after a long hiatus. Naturally this must be celebrated with a record launch celebration at the Rockfact Club in Münchenstein near Basel. With the help of Madeleine Fuhrer, who organizes small concerts in the region with her company Jaunty Productions, the guys have put together a good line-up and Medeleine and her helpers make sure that musicians and guests have everything they need.
D’Or is the opening act, the band of singer and guitarist Andy Dormann, known to me as guitarist of Charing Cross and Kissing Black. I hadn’t managed to see a D’Or show yet and only via CD you can’t get the full picture; and what I hear live convinces me completely. Rene Meyer on guitar, Dave Lunchbury on bass and Marcel Spiga on drums and Andy Dormann open their show with “Veni Vidi Ignis”, giving full power from the first second. Songs like “Jack in the Box” or “Dancing” rock the crowd and it seems the actual stars of the evening, Fire Rose, might have a difficult time to top this performance.
Dormann sees himself more as a guitarist and not a singer, but he is developing in that direction. There’s a roughness in his voice to give a song a unique twist and he obviously has fun being on stage. During the show I keep suspecting W.A.S.P. influences and get confirmation at the end when the band performs “Animal” by W.A.S.P as an encore. If D’Or are playing near you, I can only recommend to watch the gig.
But now to Fire Rose, who today launch their new album “Blood on your Hands”. They have been working on it for a long time even though some songs were written before the first album. Probably they are a bit nervous, friends, relatives, German guests, a crowd of photographers are also in the audience.
The guys open with “Heroes” and deliver a string of hits, and when everyone’s nervousness subsides, they are fully in their element. The songs from the new album are joined by a few old ones and they make sure there are enough guitar solos for the two Giese brothers to have their moment in the spotlight. Philipp Meier is performing with heart and soul, which is very well received by the audience. In the middle of the concert several surprise guests are announced. For “Devil on High Heels”, a lady wearing those comes on stage, namely Andrea Böll, who was responsible for the vocals at Infinitas, now releases her own pop songs and also gives singing lessons.
What can I say, it’s nice that they chose a woman as first guest, but unfortunately she didn’t hit any note, maybe out of nervousness, but that really hurt one of Fire Rose’s best songs. Shortly after that they perform “Don’t need Somebody” with Andy Dormann as guest and this duet works nicely, the voices fit well together. That’s how it’s done! The new drummer Simon Sutter is given a solo as well, so he can show his skills. And what should not be missing is the album christening … album??? Fire Rose are always up for a joke, so they recorded some tapes and christened them instead. Philipp’s old band mate from Crown of Glory, Hungi Berglas, takes over the beer baptism as godfather. However, the guys forgot something for me, namely to bring the old drummer Daniel Kopp on stage for the closing picture, because he also contributed a bit to the new album. The final song was in my opinion a bad choice, as “Rain Falling Down” seems to be quite emotional for everybody in the band, possibly a commemoration of the deceased bandmate Adi, and it immediately turned the good mood. Fortunately, Fire Rose manage to turn the rudder again with their two encores.
It was a nice concert evening, although in my opinion D’Or stole the show a bit from Fire Rose, and they lost my attention occasionally during the show, which usually doesn’t happen at their concerts. But you have to be able to deliver 17 songs and give 100% all the time. Nevertheless, a great concert evening and album release party!