|» Helloween 2013 09 29||
Helloween graced our shores in North America for a very brief, but memorable tour. Originally, Gamma Ray was supposed to join them like they did a few years ago, but fans will have to wait until they regroup in November in South America. At least they came closer than ever before, and it was a real honour to see them perform again, and play some classics.
Arctic Flame - those lords of the wasteland that is New Jersey - had very little time on stage to win over the crowd with their primeval aggression, but they definitely succeeded at shaking the foundatiions for both sides of the ballistic club. In fact, after the show I even purchased their full colour gatefold vinyl shaped 'Shake The Earth' CD for only $10, which was an excellent marketing idea on their behalf.
They chose to play just one song, give or take from their four full-length
albums. It was a real treat to see them play Columbus because they were
graced by Ohio's own Eric Moore from The Godz for a riotous rendition
of "Hey You". Overall, I was quite impressed with their artistic
Performance: 7 chalices
New York's own Cold Steel led by original member Troy Norr brought the '80s Thrash vibe back to the fold with their return performance mostly culled from their promising new (EP) 'American Idle'. If you like the early M.O.D., Faith or Fear, and of course, Anthrax then it may be worth rediscovering this band. I informed Troy that I had actually heard the band and still owned an original copy of 'Freak Boy' on J.L. America Records.
My death wish for crackdown to be played as an encore was quite fulfilled, as was their updated version of 'Dead By Dawn" both taken from their '88 Demo and now available through StormSpell Records on 'The Demo Anthology: 20 Years of NY Thrash.
I definitley felt bonded by blood as the secrets of the streets became
all to real to this geek boy.
Performance: 7 chalices
Helloween - Those savage pumpkins erupted with "Eagle Fly Free" before going right into the single "Nabataea" off their new album 'Straight Out Of Hell', for which they also played the title-track before returning to their previous work with "Where The Sinners Go".
As they dug deep into their metal jukebox of 'Time Of The Oath' tested tracks, these masters of the Power Metal offerings continued to enchant and delight. Earlier, when I spoke with "Weiki" during an abated interview, he informed me that they might play "Steel Tormentor", and "Falling Higher", if the crowd seemed receptive enough, and if it was not too hot. Well, they skipped "Falling, as I could see that the fans knew the newer shit much more than the classic pumpkin hits, but hearing "Steel Tormentor" and even "Power" sure perked me up!
They continued to represent the newer material and Andi really worked the crowd with a very heavy version of "Live Now". There are other songs from their latest that I would have liked to have heard like "Asshole" and "Wanna Be God", but "Weiki" clued me in to how they wanted to keep it family friendly, because they knew there would be kids in the audience.
He could not have been more accurate, as my own ten year old son was in attendance and he had a blast when they played their encores, even shouting "I Want Out" everytime Andi pointed to him; although, after the show I did find it mildy unsettling when Andi blew my son a kiss after the final encore. I guess my son's ridiculously long hair ala Bill Steer or Andy Sneap circa 1993 just threw him off a bit, otherwise...
My wife was with me too, and she was also in her element on the encores like "Are You Metal" or "Future World". Although, I know she was secretly hoping to hear "Perfect Gentleman", which is in no way a reference to me, except maybe sardonically. I think she also wanted to hear "Asshole" or Mr. Torture so she could openly dedicate them to me, but then again, I would have liked to have heard "Mrs. God" while thinking of her.
Either way, we all could have done without the new gaaay ballad "Hold Me In Your Arms", and Dani's deleterious drum solo, but it was fun to be serenaded by an acoustic version of "If I Can Fly", as Sascha is such a great guitarist, and accomplished songwriter. As usual Markus was quite entertaining on stage, but even he almost tipped over his mic. when he got lost watching my son go crazy Man while they played a mean version of "Dr. Stein".
If you missed this rare U.S.brief visit, then check out the footage at YouTube. Sadly none of my pictures turned out worth a shit, but this did inspire me to invest in a better camera.
Like all my reviews delayed by illness and all life dishes out, these rabbits don't come easy. So here is hoping my unarmed key words keep it true and paint an image straight out of hell, otherwise I am just gamblin' with the devil.
Performance: 8 chalices