Infected Rain is a Moldovan nu-metal/nu metalcore band, formed in 2008 in Chișinău they are here making their debut tour in the UK. It’s a packed sell-out night at a very busy SWX on a cold wet Friday night, an atmospheric stage glows husky red and a mist crosses the stage before it erupts with the growling vocals of Elena Cataraga, although she is wearing a hood as she comes on stage this soon goes to show her vibrant flame red dreads as she takes to the stage and struts with the ferocity of a fire breathing dragon. Infected Rain are here to open for Lacuna Coil. The audience are loving them from the off, this band have a visual vibrant stage presence, Infected Rain mean business and they are taking no prisoners tonight as they kick off with “Mold” from the album 86.
Elena Cataraga welcomes the audience after the first song and says “I know it’s early but we have come a long way to play for you, let me hear you” to which the audience oblige with very vocal roars as Infected Rain rip into the next song.
Vadim Ozhog has his head down and delivers riff after riff with absolute precision, as his head bangs and dreads fly through the air as he smashes through an absolutely captivating powerful set. Bassist Sergey Babich was unable to make the UK tour so Diego Cavallotti of Lacuna Coil filled in on a few songs tonight for the band and did an absolutely cracking job. Song after song from the bands set is making an impressive impression on this packed room including the guest track with Bjonas from Eluveitie.
“Do you want some more? do you want some more?” Elena Cataraga, then shouts “Do you guys in Bristol know what a circle pit is? because we aren’t starting this song until you start the circle pit!” with a little encouragement the crowd oblige in a flash and the stage explodes like napalm and the band rampage every last ounce of energy they have across the stage before waving goodbye and taking a crowd photo with the band.
Elena “Lena Scissorhands” Cataraga. – Vocals.
Vadim “Vidick” Ozhog – Guitar.
Serghei Babici – Guitar.
Vladimir Babici – Bass.
Eugen Voluta – Drums.
For more information head to: https://www.infectedrain.com/
Eluveitie describes themselves as the new wave of folk metal. The band’s style incorporates characteristics of melodic death metal combined with the melodies of traditional Celtic music.
The roadies haven’t finished setting up the stage but the main floor has suddenly filled, people are moving from the back bars and the merch stands to pack the main floor.
Think of any metal gigs you have attended this year, or you are about to attend in the last few weeks of 2019, I can more or less promise you that Eluveitie will be the band you see with the widest variety of instruments, they have a lot of kit going out on stage, the usual guitars, drums, bass, mics etc but alongside the more familiar instruments you have violins, harps, tin whistles, bagpipes and a hurdy-gurdy is brought out into the mix.
The lights drop and the very cinematic speech that introduces “Ategnatos”, the title track from the band’s eighth studio album starts tonight’s Eluveitie set. From the outset, it proves this band are full of surprises and it’s impossible to pigeon hole them into any one specific metal genre. The vocals of Chrigel Glanzmann are delivered brutally in a style that’s often described as melodic death metal. His vocals are accompanied with the usual instruments seen at all gigs, however, this is where this band comes into its own with an impressive selection of traditional Medieval and Celtic instruments, no other band could metal up the tin whistle, harp or hurdy-gurdy like Eluveitie.
Whilst vocalist Chrigel is delivering the snarling vocals with enthusiasm these are softened with the gentle song of Fabienne Erni. Between growls, he grabs the tin whistle and joins in with Matteo Sisti who does most of the tin whistle work as well as bagpipes on the closing track of the bands set this evening.
Later on, in the set Chrigel calls for the audience to choose if the next song is to be sung “In English or our own language?” the Swiss language version of the next song is a treat the fans are loving it very much.
Throughout the evening every song has a variety of instruments introduced into every song and this works fantastically.
A few songs in is the fantastic “Deathwalker” another track from the band’s latest album Ategnatos which was released back in April this year, this certainly gets the room moving. The stage presence of this band cannot be underestimated, 9 musicians on stage all playing a variety of instruments never seen at any metal gig, with two vocalists delivering brutality and melody in the same song and a harp player helicopter headbanging is absolutely a first.
Before things turn back to the brutal vocals of Chrigel the crowd is treated to a very folk-inspired haunting solo by Fabienne Erni whilst the rest of the band take a quick break before slowly re-joining her on stage.
You can almost guarantee you’ll find no band anywhere like Eluveitie, the power, the enthusiasm, the variety and quality of musicianship is excellent. Imagine taking Enya, Carcass, Cathedral, Clannad even elements of Cradle of Filth and a good appreciation for Medieval death metal, now fuse those styles together, watch and hear them work with absolute perfection keeping a packed sell-out gig moving, Eluveitie, they nailed it…
Chrigel Glanzmann – Vocals.
Kay Brem – Bass.
Rafael Salzmann – Lead Guitar.
Matteo Sisti – Bagpipes, Tin Whistle.
Jonas Wolf – Rhythm Guitar.
Alain Ackermann – Drums.
Michalina Malisz – Hurdy Gurdy.
Nicole Ansperger – Violin, Backing Vocals.
Fabienne Erni – Vocals.
For more information head to: http://www.eluveitie.ch
The lights go down, and the deep blue spotlights cut through the darkness of the venue. Drummer Richard Meiz is first out banging on the tubs and warming the eager Lacuna Coil fans up, he is shortly joined by Marco Coti Zelati and Diego “Didi” Cavalotti all three dressed in a familiar black and white horror style costume, they are soon followed by Andrea Ferro and Cristina Scabbia they break straight into “Blood, Dust, Tears” with Andres vocals growling straight through the crowd followed by Cristina Scabbia’s haunting powerful vocals.
With a quick introduction, the band fly straight into the melodic but powerful “Trip The Darkness.”
Cristina Scabbia lets this sell-out crowd know she is pleased to be back in Bristol before shouting “We come all the way from Millane to give you Our Truth,” which is met with a massive roar from the crowd. The sell-out crowd are getting no time to catch their breath as “Layers of Time” is delivered with the powerful growls of Andrea and Cristina’s amazing dark gothic harmonies. The dark gothic theme continues throughout the setlist as they move straight into “My Demons” and the very dark and melodic “Downfall.”
“It’s time to get Reckless” shouts CS, if the audience were looking a bit comfortable Lacuna Coil quickly corrected this by breaking into “Veneficium,” accompanied by powerful drumming from Richard Meiz and deep powerful bass beats from Marco Coti Zelati, whilst Diego “Didi” Cavalotti keeps the pace and riffs going on guitar, perfectly dark for a November evening. The theme continues with “Cybersleep.”
Don’t relax, the next song would be fitting in any brutal horror film “The House of Shame” is one of Lacuna Coils tracks to stop any fan from getting too comfortable after a few heavy, melodic tracks, it delivers on all counts. One of many things Lacuna Coil do well is covering a track and adding their own signature to the tune, this is proven without a doubt when they play one of the best in their covers catalogue, Depeche Modes “Enjoy The Silence.” Cristina Scabbia gets the audience to join in “Are you tired yet? Who wants to sing this one, I am sure you’ll know it.”
No gig at this time of the year would be complete without a seasonal song, and Lacuna Coil treats the audience to their token Xmas tune, the very gothic metal and cheeky “Naughty Christmas.” Heavy and riff-laden with fantastic vocals. The room erupts for the classic tracks “Heaven’s A Lie” and “Swamped.”
It’s been an amazing evening and now to the final tune, the very funky “Nothing Stands In Our Way.” An absolutely fantastic gig.
For more information head to: https://www.lacunacoil.com/
Andrea Ferro — Male Vocals
Marco Coti Zelati — Bass, Keyboards
Cristina Scabbia — Female Vocals
Diego “Didi” Cavalotti — Guitars
Richard Meiz — Drums
Review by Metaljase
Photography by Emma Painter // Pacific Curd Photography