As I write, I still have a buzzing in my ears and the adrenaline going. I have just returned from an evening at my favorite Viennese club, the Viper Room, which is just a few meters from my home and offers an absolutely intimate atmosphere despite the popularity of the guests. This time it’s the turn of Tyr, Heidevolk and Dalriada…
When I arrive the line is stretching along Landstraßer Hauptstraße. I decide to wait instead of standing in crowds. The tour bus is placed right in front of the venue and I recognize immediately one of the Heidevolk’s singers, who is running everywhere to prepare the necessary.
People flock to descend into the meanders of the Viper. The concert is and remains sold out, someone goes out disconsolate. I go down too and sneak in the front row with my camera.
Unceremoniously, the first group takes the stage. Dalriada comes from Hungary, and although they are not exactly spring chickens, this is their first European tour. The purpose is to present their new album, “Nyárutó”. The flamboyant mix is not bad, it makes you dance.
The singer, Laura Binder, jumps and whirls, especially on the notes of “Komamaskon” and “Ígéret”. But two weird elements punch me in the face: the strong out of tune on the lyric part and the total lack of traditional instruments on the stage. I find it very bad taste, moreover, that the girl begins to imitate the movement of the violin bow – while no violin is present in reality.
Finally, it’s the turn of those I’ve been waiting for weeks. Heidevolk!
To the pleasure of their music is added the fact of having interviewed them last year and of having attended their concert at Szene – again in Vienna.
Unfortunately, I immediately notice the lack of their historical drummer, Joost. The mystery is revealed during the concert when the Rowan – the bass player – informs us that, unfortunately, he could not take part in the tour for quite serious health reasons.
For these dates, he is replaced by Kevin Van Den Heiligenberg, who had to learn the lineup in two days.
It’s pretty simple: the group is one of those that are catchy on Spotify, but live they are … real talented monsters.
Engaging, amusing, variegated. They have their classic “moves”, like the guitars’ attack on “Einde Der Zege”, with the instruments lined up and directed against the audience.
Their big hits are all present: “Wolf in my heart”, “Britannia” and “Winter Woede”.
But the central point of the whole evening is announced by a question: “What is the animal that will be discussed in the next song?”
A girl in the front row screams:”A mammoth!”
“Oh yes! You passed the test!”
And here we go: the magnificent “Vulgaris Magistralis” in all its glory. Strange as it may be, a cover (by Normaal), but a cover of extreme success.
I set the lens on Koen‘s guitar which is literally dripping sweat.
Having finished the shooting, I join my friends to dance wildly to the sound of this track and that of the closing one, “Nehalennia”.
The Dutch leave us with a bow to make room for Tyr, but I would have preferred that they could have gone on for another hour.
After all, I don’t really know what to expect from Tyr on stage… no one album convinced me previously. And my fears come true. I have only one adjective for them: boring.
Only the bassist – Gunnar Thomsen – makes the effort to incite the crowd, and moreover, he seems an extremely friendly guy. Instead, Heri Joensen, the famous singer and founder, has a diva attitude.
The tour accompanies the release of the new album “Hel”, released in March. “Sunset Shore”, “Gates Of Hel” and “Fire And Flame” are in the set list. Album of which many have rated poorly.
Nothing against their technical skills, of course, but it does not seem to me enough to warm up the spirits after the attractive aggressiveness of Heidevolk. And the too many solos at some point start to bother me.
But of course, the audience’s reaction is different from mine, as much of it came to the Viper specifically for this band. Well, I simply don’t find myself in line with the pit. As soon as the setlist ends I run towards the exit and that’s it…
But all in all, it was another great concert in a venue as wonderful as always, because it is much more intimate than Arena or Stadthalle.
I only regret not having been able to have a beer with the hilarious Joost, like last time. I’m sure the next one will not fail… I wish you all the best, big boy!