Grammy nominated British power metal band DRAGONFORCE brought their North American tour to the HOB inside Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas with supporting bands FIREWIND, VISIONS of ATLANTIS and SEVEN SPIRES. The crowd was on the small side but these were the loyal hardcore DragonForce fans who showed up to this all ages show on a
Wednesday night. The show was supposed to end at 11pm being an all ages show but they got special permission to go until 11:30pm. Being that there were four bands on this show and doors were at 7:30 we knew this was going to be a tight run show.
Starting off the show from Boston was the melodic metal band SEVEN SPIRES. This band totally blew us away as vocalist Adrienne Cowan more than lived up to everything we have seen online about her. Adrienne showcased her powerful vocals and could go from very extreme vocals a la Tatiana Shmailyuk to a more classic / symphonic vocal sound. On guitar it was Jack Kosto, bass was Peter de Reyna and drums it was Chris Dovas. The band is touring in support of their latest release Gods of Debauchery which is the 3rd installment of their concept album trilogy. I Love this band and can not wait for them to make their way back through Vegas on their next tour.
Next up was Austrian symphonic metal band VISIONS of ATLANTIS who believe it or not have been around since 2000. The band is touring in anticipation of their 8th album titled PIRATES which is to be released on May 13, 2022. Fronted by Clementine Delauney who
brought back memories of one of the best symphonic singers I have seen from Xandria - Dianne van Giersbergen. The band dressed in pirate garb performed with a huge video screen behind them with pirate battles and sunken ships on the screen. Sharing vocal duties with Clementine was male vocalist Michele Guaitoli. These two singers are a perfect combination onstage and really play off each other perfectly. On drums was Thomas Caser, on guitars was Christian Douschaand on bass it was Herbert Glos. Visions is a very visual band with a solid sound to match. A great band and perfect fit on this tour.
Next up was the band from Greece, FIREWIND with former Ozzy guitarist Gus G. Firewind
was heavier than the others on this tour, Gus G’s guitar playing blew us away. This band has an arena sound and would fit perfectly in T-Mobile arena. It was weird that all the other bands had decent lighting but Firewind went with very dark, heavy backlit red lighting which made it hard to see them at times onstage. This band has gone through numerous lineup changes but on this tour it was Gus G on guitar, Petros Christodoulidis on bass, Johan Nunez on drums and Herbie Langhans on vocals, who was sensational. The band ended their set with of all things a cover of “MANIAC” from the film Flashdance. Joining them onstage for this was Adrienne Cowan of Seven Spires. Solid band, too dark of lighting, amazing sound.
Now it was time for DRAGONFORCE led by the mighty Herman Li on guitar who took us on a video game filled odyssey inside the HOB in Las Vegas. The stage was spectacular with a huge dragon behind
the one of a kind drum kit of Gee Anzalone. On each side of the stage were two huge video games with working screens and doubled as platforms that the band members would use off and on through the show. Across the front of the stage was a battery of confetti and co2 cannons. We were warned that they would go off when we were in the photo pit and be prepared for the burst of paper shreds and co2 gasses. The band played mostly under backlighting wearing glow in the dark multi colored glasses. Twin
lead guitarists Herman Li and Sam Totman would jump on risers in the front of the stage and trade off guitar solos. On bass it was the beautiful and talented Alicia Virgil who fit in perfectly with this band. This is a band who enjoys playing live and at times would make jokes and poke fun at themselves. Even the huge dragon poked fun at them. During their set they would show commercials from old video games and about half way through they played a song from farming simulator that featured Sam dressed as a farmer playing a banjo and were also joined by Gus G and local Las Vegas based guitarist Nili Brosh who is a former guitarist for Cirque du Soleil. After taking us on a journey through the pioneer age of video games the band encored with a metal version of Celine Dion's “My Heart Will Go On” which actually was not bad. With a final blast of confetti and co2 and some string poppers it was time to end this night as it was well past the original end time. It was 11:45pm and the fans started to hit the exit as another diverse show came to an end….
DRAGONFORCE photos Harold Mountain/JustAFanPhotos
FIREWIND photos Harold Mountain/JustAFanPhotos
Visions of Atlantis photos Harold Mountain/JustAFanPhotos
Seven Spires photos Harold Mountain/JustAFanPhotos