Monday, 5 September 2016

Live Review: Arch Enemy/Soilwork/We The Deceiver

It's Tuesday, 23rd August 2016...and once again, Noizze finds itself in The Tramshed. Exactly one week after the industrial onslaught that was Ministry, the Welsh capital welcomes another round of hard-hitting metal but tonight, 100% recovered or not, we witness a melodic Scandinavian masterclass; yes Sweden's Arch Enemy are on the road with fellow countrymen Soilwork and luckily for us, their brief four-date run in the UK includes Cardiff. Unlike last week however, there is an opening support act...lets get warmed up.

We begin tonight with some local support, well, Newport to be specific but being the only Welsh band here tonight they represent! The band is We The Deceiver and for the past couple of years, this unsigned 4-piece have steadily made a name for themselves in and around the South Wales metal scene, slowly developing as a solid, cohesive unit. Since the release of their debut EP "The Borders Between Us" back in 2013, and follow up single "The Next Chapter" the lads have simply grown in confidence and in ability, added with new tracks like "Void", they pummel the early crowd tonight and it's good to see them getting such opportunities to shine. Their brutal blend of hardcore and heavy metalcore, utilising breakdowns, crushing riffs and some strong, aggressive vocals, they get everyone's ears ready for the rest of the night in style. With no real hits as such yet, it's a neutral slot but by no means un-enjoyable. [6]

Up next, we have tonight's guests of honour; Soilwork...and the Helsingborg-born quintet are in a celebratory mood indeed! Not only have they recently marked 20 years as a band, solidifying themselves as one of the most consistent and reliable outfits in the world of metal, but they also have a brand new album to share with everyone here tonight. Literally only released a couple of weeks ago, "Death Resonance", with tracks such as "Helsinki" prove that two decades on, the band still harness the speed, aggression and passion that's won them over so many fans over the years, and tonight proves no different. With a sound in places not too unlike Killswitch Engage, a connection is made with tonight's crowd and the set is triumphant, and with classics such as "Nerve" getting the crowd really going, plus with Björn Strid an ever commanding presence on the mic, no one can turn away dissatisfied from this, a great set! [7]

The celebrations don't stop there Tonight's headliners, Arch Enemy, are ALSO in the middle of a twenty year anniversary and as a result, not only are we treated to one of the strongest sets in any melodic death-metal repertoire, but this whole occasion feels like a family thing. The Halmstad-based 5-piece waste little time ripping the Tramshed a new one with tracks such as "War Eternal" and "Stolen Life" off of their most recent album...but there's one concern about Arch Enemy that can't be ignored; vocals. In Angela Gossow, they had one of the most ferocious female vocalists ever heard in ANY genre, and she was a selling point, doing it better than very many men, but when she left the band to focus on management, there were genuine worries nothing would be the same again...and those who doubted, can eat a fine slice of humble pie. Step in Canadian vocalist Alissa-White Gluz...and holy shit has this little lady got a set of demonic lungs on her! She more than does justice to not only the bands image, the bands legacy but all of the classics such as "Dead Eyes See No Future" "My Apocalypse" and of-course "Blood On Your Hands"...there was a slight case of technical difficulty to begin with, but as soon as that was dealt with, there was no stopping them. I said it earlier; this was a masterclass. As the song goes; "You Will Know My Name"...well Alissa, we already do, and the pleasure is all ours. Arch Enemy will rise again. [8]

Review by Gavin Griffiths

Photo Cred: Stevie Swarts

Fuel Rock Club

Fuel Rock Club
Cardiff's Only Dedicated Rock & Metal Bar and Club