CONCERT REVIEW: Dragonforce – Firewind – Visions of Atlantis – Seven Spires: Live at Worcester Palladium

October 9th, 2009. That was the last time I saw Dragonforce live, with Sonata Arctica and Taking Dawn so needless to say, I was very excited for this show… in the same venue as last time, no less! Added only to the fact that this tour has been on the minds of everyone that originally planned to see it last year when Unleash The Archers were on the bill, but we now have Firewind, Visions of Atlantis, and New England based titans Seven Spires to look forward to. Let’s stop wasting time and get into this symphonic and power-metal night of fun.

First on to the stage are hometown heroes, Seven Spires. Before the band even took the stage, damn near the whole venue was already full, this is a hometown show for them after all. In tour for their latest album, Gods of Debauchery (Frontiers Srl), Spires ran through a quick and tight set of some new and old music to give their fans a taste of what they’ve been missing from their live show over the last two years. Soaring vocals, shredding guitar solos, some of the most intricate bass playing I’ve ever seen in person outside of an Archspire show, and drumming that quite literally is part of death metal history, drummer Chris Dovas is the active touring drummer for Vital Remains. Long story short, go listen to Seven Spires. I truly can not say enough good things about them.

Next up after Seven Spires crushing set was a band that I had honestly never heard of, but based on their name I was excited, Visions of Atlantis. With a name like that you can paint yourself a picture as to what might happen. Soaring choruses, angelic and ethereal vocals, thunderous drums, and a pirate… and, that is exactly what you get. I can confidently say that Visions of Atlantis’ set was some of the most fun I’ve had photographing a band in a while. For sure a band I’m going to be listening to and talking about for quite some time.

After the pirate party that Visions of Atlantis had on stage was Gus G’s (Ozzy Osbourne) band Firewind, coming all the way from Greece. Having only heard of the band but never actually heard the band’s music, I was excited to see what would happen next. One of the other photographers at the show was bursting at the seams excited to see them, this was his 12th time seeing them live. And let me tell you something, Greece may have amazing food, but their metal… gahd DAMN! A sonic punch in the face and gut. Super high energy, ripping solos, and a cover of “Maniac”. Yes, that “Maniac”… from Flashdance. Never in my life did I think I would see waves of crowd surfers going over the barricade during a cover of Michael Sembello. All of this to say, go check out Firewind, you won’t be disappointed.

And now, the moment we’ve all been waiting for, that band from Guitar Hero III… Dragonforce! Giant arcade machines, a steel dragon drum riser, smoke and confetti canons, and a lot of blue and purple neon. So in other words, par for the course for Dragonforce. Opening with “Highway To Oblivion” and then immediately running through “Fury of the Storm” you can tell that the band was excited to be there. Fun fact for y’all, Dragonforce’s VERY FIRST show ever in America was at The Palladium on April 30th, 2006 where they headlined (alongside Gamma Ray) at the 8th New England Metal & Hardcore Festival. After the second song, we get the intros out of the way and dive straight on into the videogame aspect of the show. A song about The Elders Scrolls V: Skyrim, Sega Genesis commercials, Final Fantasy VII covers, a banjo farmyard jam… I could go on and on. Hearing “Black Fire” and “Cry Thunder” back-to-back was a power metal dream! Closing out the night with their cover of Celiene Dion’s “My Heart Will Go On” and of course… it wouldn’t be a Dragonforce show without hearing “Through the Fire and the Flames”. It was a epic, power metal vinegar stroke of show that all should be able to enjoy. Which you technically can, as Herman Li streams all of the shows on tour to his Twitch channel!

Until next time, this is Smallz, signing off… peace and chicken grease y’all!

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