Dutch Symphonic Metal Titans Epica have just announced a full headline UK & Ireland Tour for next Spring. The sextet will take on UK venues nationwide as well as play their first ever Irish show at Dublin's Tivoli.
Guitarist Mark Jansen commented:
"We're coming back to the UK! Not for just 1 show like last time. Also Ireland for the very first time!!! We're looking very much forward to partying with you guys! See you in April!"
Epica played a sold-out show at London's Shepherd's Bush Empire earlier this year bringing their latest album 'The Holographic Principle' to life with impressive lighting and staging. Light reflecting glass prisms accompanied the cinematic soundscapes of one of metal's biggest and most bombastic live bands. Don't miss your chance to see Epica in 2018 as they take on the whole of the UK with full force on THE UNITED PRINCIPLE TOUR!
VIP bundles & General Tickets go on sale this Friday 4th August and full routing plus ticket links can be seen below:
METALHAMMER PRESENTS: EPICA + supports TBA
Fri 06.04.18 Nottingham - Rock City
Sat 07.04.18 Glasgow - ABC1
Sun 08.04.18 Bristol - O2 Academy
Tue 10.04.18 Dublin - Tivoli
Thu 12.04.18 Manchester - O2 Ritz
Fri 13.04.18 London - 02 Forum
Epica's latest album 'The Holographic Principle' was released in 2016 and was well-received worldwide, making Top 10 Chart entries in the German, Dutch and Swiss album charts. It was also #3 on the UK Rock Chart.
Epica release their new EP, The Solace System,via Nuclear Blast on September 1st, 2017.
Pre-order digitally now in i-Tunes:
Or pick up a physical copy from the NB store:
Swedish ambient black metal outfit Mist Of Misery have been confirmed for Autumn Of Souls Festival In Sofia, Bulgaria. The festival will take place between 25-26th November 2017, other bands confirmed include Swedish legends Hypothermia, and France's Nocturnal Depression. This exclusive festival appearance will be the bands first show outside Sweden.
This years festival edition marks the festival's 3rd year. Mist Of Misery is currently putting their final touches to their new double EP entitled "Shackles of Life" and "Fields of Isolation" set for release this summer.
Athens based Symphonic Metallers Fallen Arise are confirmed for the 10th Anniversary edition of Hammerfest UK!
Stated the band:
"We are proud to announce our participation at Hammerfest in Pwllheli, Wales, U.K. next March 17th, 2018! We will share the stage with Sepultura, Hellyeah, Blaze Bayley and other great bands!"
Get more information on Hammerfest, here: http://www.hammerfest.co.uk
As previously announced, Fallen Arise will join Paradise Lost, as special guests on Russian shows in May 2017, as follows:
May 18th – Moscow – at Yotaspace
May 19th – St. Petersburg – at Club Zal
May 21th – Yekaterinburg – at Tele-Club
Fallen Arise are a symphonic metal band formed in Athens in 2009. After releasing their first EP (Eternal) in 2011, the first studio album (Ethereal) was recorded and released in 2013. Following this, the second studio album (Adeline) was released in 2015 and features the collaboration of 40 acclaimed musicians from different orchestras across Greece.
Northern Symphony is the UK's premier symphonic metal event that actively supports the UK's symphonic metal talent. Starting in 2015, the festival has featured bands from all across the UK, including Winter In Eden, Old Corpse Road, Apparition and more as well as the odd band or two from Europe.
With just over a month until the third edition of the event, Birmingham based outfit Celestial Wish have been added to the billing as main support to co-headliners Dakesis and Control The Storm. The band commented: "It's amazing to be playing Northern Symphony with so many great bands!"
Celestial Wish are a Birmingham-based Symphonic Metal act currently consisting of; Frontwoman Saneeta Ram, guitarist and orchestral composer Daniel Carpenter, violist Eileen Smith and bassist Fraser Banks. Their sound is characterised by the use of powerful orchestration, enchanting synths, soaring vocals, heavy riffs and blistering solos, which all come together to form a sound that takes the listener into their own personal dreamland, where each Celestial Wish comes true, and anything is possible.
Celestial Wish are heavily influenced by bands such as Nightwish, Kamelot, Avantasia, Within Temptation, Evanescence and Sonata Arctica, however, their list of influences goes far beyond the Metal genre, including such composers as Andrew Lloyd Webber, Stephen Schwarz and Danny Elfman. All of these inspirations have come together to form a powerful sound that one might describe as majestic, or epic.
Northern Symphony Festival takes place on Saturday 15th April at The Veneu in Selby, North Yorkshire and will feature Dakesis, Control The Storm, Celestial Wish, Dead of Night, Scottish metallers The Fall of Eve, Anglo-Graeco unit Synthetic, Welsh metal band Prophecy and newcomers Sorrow's End.
Tickets for Northern Symphony Festival can be purchased at this location for £8.
Italy, Naples-based symphonic metallers Poemisia are confirmed, as main support, for Russian folk / pagan metallers Arkona on their show in Kiev, on March 12th!
"For all our beautiful Ukrainian fans, this is for you! After our very first show in Kiev just two years ago, our second one last year, we couldn't miss this year, so it's time for the third one! We're very glad to support Arkona for this show and would be very pleased to meet all of you amazing people again! See you on stage!!"
The musical style of Poemisia is focused on sounds which combine metal music to opera and symphonic elements. This duality leads to a tendency to mark the continuous conflict between darkness and light, between death and life, between Hell and Heaven, sometimes also in a peculiar grotesque way. This is fully reflected also in the lyrics which have always a refined nature. Poemisia
2017 is still young and yet one of the heaviest line-up's this year rolled into London on the back-end of a performance in Paris, Fleshgod Apocalypse were on the last few dates of their European run that saw them and their supporting buddies in Carach Angren and Nightland rack up over ten countries.
Italy's most extreme metal band has visited London endless times, 9 or 10 if you were to count and yet the expectation was riding even higher on the Classical-Death Metal outfit as this was their first ever headlining tour. Sure they had support from the Dutch Symphonic / Melodic Black Metal horde Carach Angren and their own fellow-countrymen in the form of Nightland, this did not however make them sweat one bit - despite the cold outside the didn't seem phased by the bitter English weather at all.
Who'd have thought that a band like Nightland were virtually unheard of in this part of Europe and yet with their magical combination of Symphonic Death Metal and on-stage armour-clad outfits, they came with the ferocity of a thousand stallions rampaging through the old Roman towns and cities of Italia. Here is a band who try to emulate the apocalyptic sound that Fleshgod Apocalypse have nurtured but simultaneously try to resist becoming a fad or indeed a clone, they manage to pull it off.
Sure the notable absence of a pianist helps, but truth be told Nightland dealt their cards well with this performance as the crowd bathed in their mighty, yet mesmerising performance and craft. They certainly knew how to get the party started (and this is not a P!nk reference) but more so knew how to crack the London audience, after all some of the British metalheads can be a tough crowd to arouse if not motivate to spark moshpits and related motions found within the metal music repertoire.
No doubt Nightland done themselves proud and will certainly be welcomed back to these shores with open arms in the times ahead.
[8/10] RHYS STEVENSON
Carach Angren are no strangers to the European circuit having pillaged and rampaged across the European plains for many years, blasting their infectious mix of Symphonic and Melodic Black Metal whilst adding horror and ghost stories to the fray. A perfect partner to Fleshgod Apocalypse, the Dutch horde demanded immediate attention when it came to their slaying performance.
No show is a show without some form of theatrics (lets be honest), so when Ardek's keyboard is shown to move up, down, left, right, sideways and horizontally, the crowd practically wet themselves as the motion demonstrated is one of complete amazement but more so gives the impression of being on a ship... cue The Flying Dutchman. But given their overall performance, it would be nice to see Carach Angren grace some UK festivals this year, this was deserving of a slot by far.
Ardek at one point donned a mask that was very reminiscent of The Purge artwork, so despite it's creepy nature the aesthetic was sensual and sexual simultaneously; yes there is such as a thing as a ghost orgy. As song after song came rallying out like a machine gun on endless rounds, it was time for the hauntings to cease and for the renaissance to step in... cue Fleshgod Apocalypse.
Hail to the Fleshgod Apocalypse, hail to the King! This is what was chanted by the already aroused crowd as the anthemic crescendo tune of 'Marche Royale' erupted into the venue as the Italian classical maestros made their way on stage, unfortunately Cristiano Trionfera was not in attendance but his stand-in replacement (whose name one has forgotten) done justice and would have made signor Trionfera rather proud.
In fact as the traditional quintet (with exception to the minor personnel change) and Veronica Bordacchini (live opera vocals) led the charge with 'In Aeternum', 'The Fool' and 'The Violation' as the stapled songs in their set-list, few could argue that Fleshgod Apocalypse are Italy's latest successful metal export and are ones who join the upper echelons that Lacuna Coil are perched on. Having the expected swig of wine during the performance, Tommaso looked rather stern at the media, suspecting his bottle of limoncello had been taken (of course this is not true... yet limoncello is undoubtedly nice).
This was a performance to savour and as Fleshgod Apocalypse finished their set with the epic melodic tune 'The Forsaken', it was a night that will live long in the memories of those who attended for here were three bands who despite having different styles of symphonic metal at their very foundations, all indulge in the extreme metal faculty and do so with such admirable interest. As they would say in Italy, 'tutto è bene che riesce bene'.
[8.5/10] RHYS STEVENSON
Athens based Symphonic Metallers Fallen Arise are confirmed, as special guest on Paradise Lost Russian shows in May 2017, as follows:
May 18th - Moscow - at Yotaspace
May 19th - St. Petersburg - at Club Zal
May 21th - Yekaterinburg - at Tele-Club
Watch Fallen Arise’s new vocalist Fiona Creaby making her debut on Greek soil, featuring “Never Forget Me” and “My Last Breath”: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qpa5h9LelAI
Amberian Dawn have announced two more dates on their first European headline tour, these are:-
- 10.2.2017 LONDON (UK) - Boston Music Roon
- 11.2.2017 ROESELARE (BE) - De Verlichte Geest
“Amberian Dawn is now 10 years old and we’re going to celebrate it properly by doing our first Headliner tour in Europe with our label mates Diabulus in Musica, who are also having their 10th active year happening as well. Our co-headlining tour will be named “Amberian Dawn 10th Anniversary Tour”. Opening act will be Finnish based Crimson Sun!
Be there and share the word (in Facebook, Instagram, Twitter et !! Make sure that all of your friends will find out about this tour !!
More details here:
Italian Symphonic Metallers Souls Of Diotima have proudly announced first leg of "Gold & The New Horizons" European Tour.
10 Shows in support of their latest concept album "The Sorceress Reveals - Atlantis" released in June 2016 via Rockshots Records
19.01.17 - St Georgen - Fumreif - AUS
20.01.17. - Trimmelkam - Sakog - AUS
21.01.17 - Velika Plan - Drum Club - SER
23.01.17 - Pit - Bellinzona - SWI
24.01.17 - Smile Cafè - Liege - BE
25.01.17 - Rodewisch - Ars-Vitae - GER
26.01.17 - The Cave - Amsterdam - NL
27.01.17 - B52 - Eernegem - BE
28.01.17. - L'Excalibur - Reims - FR
29.01.17 - The One - Milan - IT
It's always a special occasion when a band decides to do an album launch concert, gig, party, however you wish to term it. The truth of the matter is that not only are album launch parties great for showcasing a wide variety of bands, in this case metal bands, but also the nationalities drawn it from it. With Epica's EpicMetalFest II, people from far and wide came to the 013 Poppodium in Tilburg to witness bands from Europe and as far away as Tunisia and Canada.
(This was my first time at a concert abroad and first time flying alone having come from the UK)
Sadly despite best efforts, due to some rather annoying maintenance works going on the Dutch railway and highway between Arnhem and Tilburg, I missed Off The Cross (BE), For I Am King (NL) and Myrath (FR / TN) and so cannot really report on either band. However, by chatting to some punters who said all three bands were on the ball, I'll take their word for it and give all three bands a 7.50/10.
Dutch Modern Metal outfit Textures certainly had their A-game in check as they carried off where Tunisian Oriental Metallers Myrath had finished. By unleashing a charismatic on-stage presence with some rather tight and malicious sounding music, there was no reason why the crowd couldn't have matched the intensity radiating from Textures performance. Underrated at times, Textures have shown during this evening why they're worthy of a Bloodstock slot next year. Ballistic at all angels, Textures were simply raising the bar for the evening, was there anyone capable of stealing the show (besides Epica)?
Having only made their Napalm Records debut last year, Belgian Speed Metallers Evil Invaders showed exactly why the Austrian label snapped up the quartet without question. Blisteringly fast riffs crashed against all four walls of the Universe Stage, all whilst Textures were doing their own shindig next year on the Storm Stage. Evil Invaders have been knocking around for nearly 10 years and yet despite the age of the band as a unit, the members started off as teenagers, yet they're capable of proving that they've shed their teenage skins and morphed into a formidable, respectable force. By belting out songs as if they went out of fashion, Evil Invaders only had one thing in mind... total carnage and boy did they deliver.
One of a handful of Dutch Metal bands performing at this year's EpicMetalFest, Stream Of Passion are really no newcomers to the erotic world of female-fronted Symphonic Metal, in fact all but one band member have been in previous bands thus being no strangers to the scene. Moreover here is a band who despite their best efforts at delivering sweet music that is so sumptuously good to the ears, hasn't yet managed to reach the heights of their fellow contemporaries in Within Temptation and Epica. However their set demonstrated that they're on the path to achieve that goal and despite it still being late afternoon, had no reservations about keeping the crowd on their toes. Drinking was in full flow during their set, Stream of Passion? A Stream of alcohol more like.
Since the departure of Alissa White-Gluz (The Agonist kicked Alissa out of the band, thus enabling her to join Arch Enemy after Angela Gossow became band manager; thereabouts), The Agonist have been finding their way with their new vocalist Vicky Psarakis. Now, Vicky showed she is up to the task-in-hand by delivering a performance worthy of continuous applause if not for some of the other band members who seemed rather lost and at times not fully convincing; it's as if they haven't stepped out of the shadows of their former vocalist, resulting in a rather disappointing set. Not entirely sure what their plans were for the evening but it seemed to not involve band practise, despite this the whole set was of reasonable standard yet without a doubt, probably the most disinteresting performance of the night.
Herewith is an example of grandiose perversion of the extremely meticulous kind, and now you're probably thinking what the actual f*ck am I on about? It's certainly a technical sentence no? Perfect for Italy's Fleshgod Apocalypse who once again don the theatrics and emit such musical ferocity that earth tremors could be felt. Seriously enough they did not put a foot wrong, in fact they are so rehearsed in their dramatis personae that they would do well at Eurovision next year (are you reading this RAI?). Strobe lights abound and an air of operatic grandeur circumventing the venue was certainly the case, plenty more where those came from as walls of death came to and fro by the commands of Tommaso Riccardi; it was as if he was playing the king and the punters as the fools, either way Fleshgod Apocalypse demonstrated once again why they are still underrated.
Where Fleshgod Apocalypse managed to succeed in shitting the audience, Katatonia did not, instead they commenced the slitting. A once great and brutal institution has now turned for the dank and dismal worse; it was as if they weren't meant to be here because to be quite frank, the music did not fit in with the rest of the evenings line-up. That said, at least Katatonia trump Justin Bieber hands down and have the decency to sing, not lip sync live. But Katatonia just could not get the audience going, some just standing and watching bare-face, expressionless, it was as if they have been subjected to a public culling of animals, it was horrific. Despite all their might, Katatonia just did not deliver tonight... well they delivered, but the music was stale and too depressive.
Now whilst I interviewed Anis Jouini from Myrath, The Ocean were doing their thing (and we could hear it, so let's give them a decent 7/10). Now the time had come for the star performance of the evening, well it is Epica's show of course... joking aside, Epica are another band who know how to deliver a mesmerizing yet epic live show and they did not disappoint. Using props designed to mimic their new album's artwork (The Holographic Principle), Epica used laser deflecting pyramids to divert light beams across the stage, creating a psychedelic feeling as a result. Additionally in tow was Coen Janssen and his 'keyscooter' (let's call it that because it's a keyboard on wheels) and of course the expected pyrotechnics (which culminated in the end to a firework explosion). Epica simply were sensational, by delivering a set, performance and indeed day-concert worthy of being unleashed on DVD, all in the namesake of their new album, calling it magical is simply not enough and does not describe the overarching package that is EpicMetalFest... may the 2017 edition be as breathtaking.
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