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Reviewed by Thomas
Tourname: Once Upon A Tour 2005
Headliner: Nightwish
Special guest: Nocturnal Rites
City: Gothenburg, Sweden
Venue: Lisebergshallen
Date: 09 Sept. 2005
Nightwish set-length: 90 minutes
Nocturnal Rites set-length: 45 minutes


Nocturnal Rites

It might seem like we are doing some heavy propaganda at Metal Covenant for Nocturnal Rites with recent features like a review, an interview, a song-by-song commentary on Grand Illusion and now a live report. But that is just how it sometimes turns out and Nocturnal Rites is a band that deserve all the attention and if they are not getting a real breakthrough with their new album I would be surprised, especially when they turned out to be such a great and confident live act.

They started with Fools Never Die from their forthcoming new album Grand Illusion and what a voice he has Jonny Lindqvist. Nocturnal Rites played with a high intensity straight through and got a great response from the crowd, and why shouldn't they? The sound was really good and the delivery of the songs was even better and the forty-five minutes they had on their hands just flew away.

We are in a hell of a mode to play today, vocalist Jonny said. No kidding, the band seemed to be on fire and really thrilled to be on stage performing for the Gothenburg crowd. It was a playful and relaxed band on stage that we saw, with a great deal of confidence and positive energy surrounding them. I counted to six (or was it seven?) songs and the focus was put on their coming album Grand Illusion, tracks that work really great live as well as on album I must say. But it was the last high-speed double-keg catchy power metal tune (that I don't remember the name of) that I will remember the most from this great performance. And I bow my head in shame for not discovering this band earlier.

8 chalices of 10

(sorry, no setlist)



Nightwish is getting more and more popular as they keep going and it is obvious when you can feel the anticipation in this sold out hall, a lot of people were eagerly waiting for them to enter the stage. The hall was out of air and the temperature was high when they started with Dark Chest Of Wonders, just like when they were here last year, and there is a special feeling when Tarja enters the stage and starts to sing. She has a beauty and charisma that can light up any darkened room. The band sounded a bit un-tight with the first song and it took a little time before all the pieces fell into place, but then it was as great as always.

Planet Hell was the track that followed and it is one of those that have a great balance between the vocals from bassist Marco Hietala and Tarja. Tarja has an absolutely beautiful voice and it sounded perfectly as always this evening but the songs with shared vocals are needed to give a boost into their live performances, it can get too much of her angelic voice otherwise. The Phantom of The Opera, that brought down a deafening roar from the crowd when it started and is another one of those tracks with shared vocals that brings out a little extra from Nightwish and when they are this good they are hard to beat. Slaying The Dreamer, which is probably the most aggressive song the band has written, is yet another one and when it comes to the heavy parts and Marco's harsh voice is in focus it is great, and I found myself wondering how it would be to see him and his band Tarot live, where he does all of the vocals.

The concert slowed down a bit too much in the middle with the ballad Sleeping Sun and the cover song of the evening where Tarja gets to rest her voice. The selection this time was a bit strange as they guys did a version of Pink Floyd's High Hopes. Not that it is a bad song or that they didn't do it well, it was just that it felt out of place. It was easy to tell which songs that are the most popular when Nightwish play live, The Phantom Of The Opera, Wishmaster to some extent, Nemo and I Wish I Had An Angel bring without a doubt down the biggest cheers and make the crowd the most lively. And it is also those songs that they seem to like the most to play themselves.

According to Marco this was an exceptionally good crowd, something he proclaimed he didn't say every night (like they always say) but it was a great response they got, even better than the last time they where here. The last part of the show with the encore with Ghost Love Score and I Wish I Had An Angel ended the concert with high intensity and once again I was struck by how damn professional this band is. Even if they tended to be a bit un-tight again toward the end and the guitar was a little too low most of the time, they make you feel like they are giving it all. Once again Nightwish delivered a solid effort and yet they have not failed to please me with the times I have seen them.

8 chalices of 10


Dark Chest Of Wonders
Planet Hell
Ever Dream
The Kinslayer
Phantom Of The Opera
The Siren
Sleeping Sun
Pink Floyd / High Hopes
Bless The Child
Slaying The Dreamer
Kuolema Tekee Taiteilijan
Ghost Love Score
I Wish I Had An Angel

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