Helloween & Gamma Ray

Onhell

Infinite Dreamer
I've only heard the singles off of it... Might pick it up one of these days, hell I own Chameleon and LOVE it hahaha, so you never know.
 

Wästed The Great

Minister Of Chicks, Metal&Beer; Cool & Froody Dude
Staff member
I have some of the music off that.  But I usually have it on shuffle, so don't always know when I hear it.

Did you hear that cover album that they did?  I kinda liked that one.  Metal Jukebox.  Dude, power metal ABBA-- one word: awesome!
 

Invader

Ancient Mariner
Helloween have a new album coming out, and they've posted a video on their website: http://www.helloween.org/hometop/170-ar ... ml#article .  Catchy song, but repetitive and not that special. 

I personally am not so excited about the new album, but I'm quite hyped about seeing Helloween live again: they are somewhat special to me because they were the first band I saw live.
 

Jonszat

Trooper
Listening to it on Spotify. I'm really digging it. The best since The Dark Ride and maybe even further back.
 

Invader

Ancient Mariner
Helloween/Stratovarius gig review below, in spoilers.

I saw Helloween last Wednesday.  It was the second time I saw them, last time was 2007.  Opening acts were Avatar (crappy local band, seen them before but skipped them this time) and Stratovarius.  IIRC Stratovarius wasn't a proper opening act, but more of a "special guest" like Gamma Ray in 2007.  Clearly, the crowd was there more to see Helloween; however, I would have expected a power metal crowd in the band's own country to be more into Stratovarius' songs.  It seemed like the only song the crowd knew/recognised properly was Hunting High and Low.  I'll admit that I'm not overly familiar with Stratovarius, but I still knew most of the songs and sang along.

@Foro: You asked about the new guitarist earlier.  He seemed good, but I can't judge that well because I don't know the solos that well and I also didn't see much of him at the gig (I was on the right side of the stage and he was to the left).

Stratovarius set list:
Phoenix
Legions
Darkest Hours
The Kiss of Judas
Against the Wind
Eagleheart
Distant Skies
Speed of Light
Paradise
Hunting High and Low
---
Black Diamond

Helloween was clearly the more anticipated band of the evening, and while there was no shouting for Stratovarius before they began, there was a moderate amount for Helloween.  The band's performance was energetic and they seemed to be into it a lot.  The set list could have been better:

Are You Metal?
Eagle Fly Free
March of Time
Guitar Solo
Where the Sinners Go
Steel Tormentor
Drum Solo
I’m Alive
You Stupid Mankind
Forever and One (Neverland)
A Handful of Pain
Medley: Keeper of the Seven Keys/The King for a 1000 Years/Halloween
I Want Out
---
Future World
---
Dr. Stein

After a rocking start (Eagle Fly Free into March of Time, wow), the setlist (though not the gig itself) fell on its face, to put it bluntly. The middle of the gig was somewhat of a disappointment.  I don't usually like to complain about set lists, but this one just had too much 90s material and the new album's material all clumped in one, and it wasn't even the better songs of the 90s.  It didn't help that I wasn't very familiar with either.  The other 2000s albums would have had excellent songs, but they were almost completely ignored.  The title track of the new album served as a good opener, but the other two new songs played didn't work as well.  Last time Helloween played only two new tracks, and both of those (As Long as I Fall, Bells of the 7 Hells) were much better received than the ones played this time.

Despite this, the ending half of the gig was again excellent.  The medley of Keeper of the Seventh Keys, King for a 1000 Years and Halloween was that gig-defining moment which you remember for years afterwards.  I Want Out and Future World are of course mandatory and great songs, but they both had overextended crowd participation parts (à la Running Free, but longer), which brought them down a bit.  Those crowd participation parts could have been replaced by 2-3 actual songs, or the medley's songs could almost have been played in full instead.  They were so long, in fact, that I found only partial versions of these, at 8 and 9 minutes respectively; the songs themselves were probably extended to over 10 minutes each.  Ridiculous.  Apparently, Tampere also got Ride the Sky but Helsinki did not.  The final encore was Dr. Stein.  They had organised a contest online to get people to come to the show dressed up as Dr. Stein, and the winners got to rock on stage during the song.  Fun, an excellent song, and a great ending to the gig.  I also managed to catch Sascha's pick, which was cool since taller people always get them.

This review came out a bit more negative than I intended, as the gig was still a very positive experience.  That being said, I've seen some truly fantastic gigs this year, e.g. Blaze, Maiden, and Gamma Ray, and they set the bar high.  Writing this review, I couldn't help but compare Helloween's show to Gamma Ray's in the spring.  Gamma Ray put out a better album, the audience was absolutely crazy there, and Gamma Ray comes across live as even more positive and energetic than Helloween.  And, Gamma Ray played Ride the Sky. :bigsmile:  
 

Forostar

Ancient Mariner
Thanks man :)

Three songs on the setlist I really like and are special classic jewels:

March of Time (they might have played it in 2007 as well)
Steel Tormentor   ( :yey: one of the most energeric and best songs from post-Kai Hansen era)
I'm Alive (wow!  :yey: )

I also have a Sascha pick, from the 2007 gig. :)
 

Jonszat

Trooper
Not really keen on the songs they picked from the new album:

World of Fantasy and If A Mountain Could Talk are better than a couple of the ones in the middle of the set list. Also drum solo/guitar solos bore me unless it's something like Walking on Glass, it'd have been another chance for another song to get on the setlist and it's not like Helloween are lacking a sufficient back catalogue.
 

Onhell

Infinite Dreamer
Great review Invader, thanks! Stratovarius' set list is awesome! I wish I could have been there and I agree with Helloween's setlist not being all that great. the '07 tour had a MUCH better one.
 

Night Prowler

Customer Deathcycle Manager
Staff member
7 Sinners is a great album with a really bad sound production. Everything sounds muddy and fuzzy, it's really awful. I hope that this album gets a full remix/remaster.
 

Onhell

Infinite Dreamer
I need to sample it more before deciding to buy it or not. I'm a huge fan, but I've grown tired with their inconsistency to make solid records.
 

Night Prowler

Customer Deathcycle Manager
Staff member
If you don't mind bad production, check it out, it's a great album.
I'm probably going to see them live on Wednesday with Stratovarius, if I find a good transport solution, since the concert is not in my country.
 

Mosh

Powerslave
Staff member
Seems to be a lot of Stratovarious talk lately. Why? I'd give them a listen but i'm afraid I'll just think about cat shit the whole time. :down:
 

Invader

Ancient Mariner
The Knife Master said:
Seems to be a lot of Stratovarious talk lately. Why? I'd give them a listen but i'm afraid I'll just think about cat shit the whole time. :down:

That gave me the laugh of the day, have a praise. :bigsmile:
 

Onhell

Infinite Dreamer
The Knife Master said:
Seems to be a lot of Stratovarious talk lately. Why? I'd give them a listen but i'm afraid I'll just think about cat shit the whole time. :down:

How familiar are you with them? As I've pointed out before, their mid 90's material (Fourth Dimension to Infinite) Is fucking amazing as far as Power Metal goes.
 
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