DragonForce/Firewind/Visions Of Atlantis/Seven Spires – April 2, 2022, at the Palladium in Worcester, MA
- Wanderer’s Prayer
- Gods Of Debauchery
- Oceans Of Time
- Lightbringer (With Herbie Langhans)
- Drowner Of Worlds
- Dare To Live
Seven Spires kicked off the festivities and really rocked the house! During the intro for “Wanderer’s Prayer,” the band members came out one by one. That’s when the madness started! This is a solid band that absolutely kills it on stage. They have presence and charisma and can engage the crowd. It helps that this was a “hometown” show. Having met at Berklee College of Music in Boston, this is what the band calls home, and you could tell there were a lot of friends in the crowd. Tons of band t-shirts and hoodies (it was a bit chilly that night) were seen walking around. The venue was almost full, which is not always the case for the openers. They took full advantage of that and rocked hard!
Seven Spires is a massive combination of symphonic, power, death, melodic, progressive, and cinematic metal. They use clean and harsh vocals, melodic and shredding guitars, outstanding bass, and a drummer who can go from 20 to 200 beats per minute in the blink of an eye. Their music is everything you want from those influences, fast and furious, slow and gloomy, melodic, powerful and moving. They tell tales and weave tapestries of sound that envelop the listener in a warm cloak. Their aesthetic is goth/pirate/vampire, and it works. You have to see them play live!
Fun facts for the show:
• Their video for Gods Of Debauchery was filmed in this exact venue.
• Band members had lots of family in attendance, including Chris Dovas’ grandfather and brother (an aspiring drummer himself!) and both Chris’ and Peter’s parents. All lovely people who are justifiably proud.
• Multiple members of local bands in the New England area showed up to rock and hang with the band, many of them as friends, not just fans.
These observations likely only happened because this was a hometown show, but it was cool to see.
Visions Of Atlantis
- Master The Hurricane
- A Life Of Our Own
- A Journey To Remember
- Heroes Of The Dawn
- Melancholy Angel
- Legion Of The Seas
Visions Of Atlantis is an Austrian power metal band with a serious pirate theme. Performing in the preferred dress of the high seas from a long-ago era, their music is a journey onboard a seafaring vessel. Their albums are epic quests, and the tales are always heroic. Live, they own the stage. They sound good live. They do not just imitate their recordings, instead letting the amplification do its’ job of piledriving the audience. The driving force behind this band is not the two lead singers. It is a powerhouse set of musicians who can support two excellent singers with seemingly effortless ease. The paired singers are the icing on the cake.
Watching this band perform, even with slightly limited space, they took full advantage of the area they had and really worked the crowd. The leads would take turns shifting from side to side and engaging the audience in a bit of banter and a lot of screaming. The crowd was totally there for it. Even better, after all the bands had played, they hung out at the merch table, signed autographs, and took pictures with fans. All five of them were very gracious with their time and energy. I really hope they come back to the US and do a headlining tour.
- Welcome To The Empire
- Head Up High
- Destination Forever
- World On Fire
- The Fire and the Fury
- Ode To Leonidas
- Break Away
- Rising Fire
- Maniac (Michael Sembello Cover)
Firewind is a Greek power metal band. Created by legendary guitarist Gus G., they are a killer live band that prowled and stalked the stage like beasts ready to pounce. And pounce they did! Their music is huge on record and even more massive live. The sound was crisp and clear. As veteran musicians, they know how to work together. They worked the crowd and their setlist with equal finesse. They played hard and fast and showcased the immense amount of talent they had. They also know how to have some fun and challenge themselves. They proved this by doing a killer cover of Michael Sembello’s song “Maniac” from the Flashdance soundtrack.
Live, these guys are epic! Power metal live is something that everyone should experience at least 100 times in their lives. These guys had the crowd going crazy, playing air guitar, moshing, and screaming along in ecstasy. I made my way to their merch table before the show ended, so I did not see if they went over there after the show. The lines were really long over there, so they would have been quite busy. Really made me glad I went early and got the two CDs they had available (plus a couple of Gus G’s material). Those are going to make the ride to work a lot more bearable. Power metal just seems to be able to calm the road rage. I’ll be too busy rocking out to worry about how the drivers around me are. I’m really looking forward to getting better acquainted with Firewind in the next few weeks.
- Highway To Oblivion
- Fury Of The Storm
- The Last Dragonborn
- Ashes Of The Dawn
- Heart Demolition
- Dracula’s Castle / Fight On!
- Banjo Solo / Guitar Solo (With Tomo Fujita and Mia Asano on Violin)
- Black Fire
- Cry Thunder
- Remembrance Day
- Valley Of The Damned
- My Heart Will Go On (Céline Dion Cover)
- Through The Fire And Flames (With Mia Asano)
How do you adequately describe a DragonForce show? I have no idea, but I’m going to give it a shot. It’s fast, frenetic, frenzied, and fun. There’s a dragon as part of the backdrop. There are video game-looking props that play a constant stream of clips. There are screens behind the dragon. There is always something on the screens. There is a lot of visual stimulation to go along with the onslaught of music you will experience. It’s a good thing I like stuff like that! When I bought this ticket two years ago (damn you, COVID), I had someone tell me that DragonForce could not do live what they did on record. I am happy to report that they were completely wrong. Was it exactly like the record? Of course not. It was BETTER!! This was live, loud, and completely over the top.
DragonForce is British power metal, but not just any power metal. They are video game-influenced and everything goes at warp speed. They have a sense of humor and show it on stage. They poke fun at other bands and themselves. Not like Chris Rock and Will Smith jokes, but… too soon? The light show, the stage show, the stage presence, everything is wild and well thought out. Herman Li wears a camera every night to stream on Twitch. This band knows what their fans want, and they give it to them.
The crowd was screaming along with the lyrics. They were completely engrossed. Some were waiting for one song, and they had to wait until the last moment to get that (you know the one, I mean). Others were there for every note. They stood and shouted, headbanged, and waved their fists/horns in the air. And it did not matter what song it was to those fans. They wanted everything DragonForce gave them and more. From the opening notes to the Celine Dion cover to the final bow after “Through The Fire And Flames,” DragonForce and their most avid fans partied their asses off. What an incredible show!
Overall, this was an epic show. There were four different bands. Sometimes you get tours that are a bit bland, the bands a bit too homogenous. Here, you had four different brands of power metal. The crowd never lost steam or enthusiasm. They rocked from start to finish. The Worcester Palladium holds over 2000 people and felt really full. I didn’t check the balcony, but downstairs was packed!
This tour was originally planned for 2020 but got stalled and rescheduled and delayed, and screw COVID! But it finally happened and was every bit as killer as I hoped it would be. And you can tell the fans were ready for live music, but even more than that, they were happy to be out and supporting their favorite bands. The merch tables had long lines and looked to be doing some pretty brisk business, which is so awesome to see.
These last two years have been tough on bands, many of whom make their best money on tour. I hope they have all had to put in extra merch orders to meet demand. After two rough years, they deserve it so much. I personally spent over $100 at the tables. I love live music and will do what I can to make sure it continues. I hope other fans are doing the same for their favorites. These bands bring joy and comfort to so many.
The key thing to take away from all of this is that this tour is fantastic, and the bands are all special in their own right. They have about three weeks left on the road. Catch them if you can. This show is definitely worth the price of admission. You get a lot more than you pay for, actually. Four incredible bands that all work hard and put on great shows. If you can’t catch them on this tour, make sure to watch for them in the future. You will not be disappointed.