Thursday, 15 December 2011

Iced Earth - 15 Dec 2011 (Pavilion, CY)

Iced Earth and Greece has always been a well-known duet in the world of heavy metal. But what about Iced Earth and Cyprus? Well, it was finally time to find out. The American heavy metal legends, were in Cyprus for the first time of their careers for the final gig of the European leg of the Dystopia tour. However, in the fully packed Pavilion, first on stage were Cypriots death/thrash metalers Sonik Death Monkey. The Cypriots came on stage with a good energy and seemed slightly overwhelmed by the size of the crowd which definitely surpassed the crowds from any previous metal gigs held in Cyprus. Nevertheless, Sonik Death Monkey managed to overcome the situation and get on top of it by delivering a set composed from original tracks. Additionally, by being well known within the Cypriot scene, the crowd seemed to enjoy the set and really got warmed up for what was to become a memorable show. Iced Earth came on stage, with an outstanding energy despite the tiredness that follows a tour. This was not only the first time that most of the Cypriots in the crowd witnessed Iced Earth, but it was also the first time for many of those who did witness the band in the past, to hear Stu Block(Vocals) live for the first time. And what a great impression he left. With an amazing sound and the amazing range of Stu, Iced Earth drove the Cypriot crowd to be one of the loudest the band had witnessed in a while, and tracks such as Watching Over Me were sang so loudly by the public, that Stu’s voice was almost unhearable. The band performed a variety of tracks from the majority of their albums and surprised everyone when they came back for a second encore at the end of the show. The other nice surprise for the crowd, was when Stu came out holding a big Cypriot flag and started waving it around towards the end. Jon Schaffer(Guitar) was so impressed by the Cypriots that he stated the possibility that the next Iced Earth live album, could possibly be recorded in Cyprus which made the crowd go wild. All of this however isn’t planned to happen for another couple of years, so Cyprus will just have to wait and see if they get this massive honour. Until then, however, I believe that the sweet memory of the gig will reign in the minds of many.

Iced Earth: 19/20
Sound: 5/5
Ambience: 5/5
Presentation: 4/5
Performance: 5/5

Sonik Death Monkey: 17/20
Sound: 4/5
Ambience: 4/5
Presentation: 4/5
Performance: 5/5

Posted by Nick

Wednesday, 14 December 2011

Erevos Aenaon - Meden Agan (2011)

Meden Agan, and their new album Erevos Aenaon released in September 2011, are the new symphonic progressive metal band to come out of Greece. Well known for its extreme metal bands such as Septicflesh and Rotting Christ as well as power metalers Firewind, this new addition to the roster of Greek metal bands is one that shouldn’t go unnoticed. Meden Agan is a band which combines the beauty and passion of female operatic vocals with a musical virtuosity which expands the sound of the band to new limits. Erevos Aenaon, as an album, combines many different elements from different metal genres which makes it suprisingly unique. If we try to quantify the sound of the album we could say that it is a crossbreed between early Nightwish or Epica and for some reason musically it gives me a feeling of early Lacrimas Profundere (in better quality obviously). Production wise the album is very good. However, there are some points where the sound lacks the bulkiness that it needs to really give out the epicness desired. It also seems that the album gets better as it progresses, since the first tracks are not generating any particular good or bad impressions, but once the listener gets into the mood of the album the situation changes drastically by engaging the listener in the journey. On a general note a very good first album from Meden Agan, which makes their future looking promising!
Our favourite track out of the album is Dissolve Into Grey. This track has a very Amorphis-like intro which then erupts in a combination of heaviness and melody. It also features some good guitar and drum work proving once again that the Greeks know how to play!

Erevos Aenaon: 8/10 

Posted by Nick 

Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Solaris - Midnight Realm (2011)


Solaris by Midnight Realm is an impressive demonstration of how metal has to sound in the future! The mix of melody and imposing heaviness will force you to engage in some ruthless headbanging. A great teaser for the album which we're really looking forward to hear now!

Posted by Nick