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LIVE! – Amorphis

November 12, 2010 by  

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LIVE! – Amorphis

ARTIST: Amorphis
SUPPORT: Orphaned Land + Ghost Brigade
VENUE, TOWN: 02 Academy Islington, London
DATE: 11th November 2010

FIVE WORD REVIEW: Finnish Metal Heroes, Warm Tuborg.

Support act Orphaned Land are always an intriguing prospect, popular enough to draw a substantial crowd of erstwhile smokers inside. Hailing from Israel and utilizing their Jewish and Arabic influences, they fuse together a diverse concoction of contrasts in their unique take on melodic doom metal. They’ve deservedly gained success and notoriety worldwide, even opening for Metallica in their homeland.

This should have been awesome, yet somehow it just fell short of this. Technical difficulties threatened to plauge their first few songs, yet they battled valliantly through and managed to win over the many bored looking fellows at the back of the bar. However despite the majestic sight of a room full of surly metalheads waving their hands in the air like they just didn’t care, Orphaned Land just didn’t do it for me. The sound meandered between clunky and murky, and Kobi Farhi’s erthereal Middle-Eastern vocal lines were often lost among the sludge of guitars, like thick, aural treacle daubled liberally onto the ears. The choral sections were slightly abrupt and unnerving when they appeared, and equally disconcerting was the singer’s disturbingly close resemblance to my dad. Weird.


Despite their shortcomings, Orphaned Land managed to whip the crowd into a (slightly lumbering) frenzy for Finnish headliners, Amorphis. The excitement was truly palpable as the heavy duty fans whirred irritatingly overhead, doing little to cool my warm pint of Tuborg. As soon as they appeared, the room errupted into a roar, leather jackets were removed, and horn-bearing fists punched the air.

Amorphis were amazing from start to finish, never letting up for a second as they battered the crowd senseless with thudding drums and breathtaking solos. They played an impressive set of tracks from 2009’s progressive Skyforger and its epic predecessor, Silent Waters, while treating the hardcore to a few older, more doom-laden tracks from past albums. It was clear by the tight musicianship that the guys have been on their European tour for almost a year now and show no signs of flagging, giving perfect renditions of ‘Silver Bride’ and ‘From the Haven of my Heart.’ Their appreciation of the rabid London crowd was clear throughout as they gave an energetic performance to remember and a triumphant encore to close with some favourite tracks. The crowd gave the love right back, and the band exited the stage to rapturous applause. Even the smattering of angry skinheads managed to crack a brief smile or two. Result.






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