0 6 mins 1 mth

Saturday night in Manchester means only one thing today which is a night of symphonic metal to really get your weekend started. However….

Unfortunately, first band Symphonity had a start time of 7:20 which made the first half of the set extremely quiet which felt awkward to watch. The band’s stage presence lacked in some areas at the beginning but by the 3rd song they came into their element much more and you could see the confidence get higher with the crowd getting bigger.

The vocals from the vocalist were incredible throughout with him being able to hit some incredible high notes that made your eyes go wide and take a moment to gather your thoughts before he continued. The band seemed like the most wholesome happy bunch of people on that stage and it’s unfortunate that the crowd didn’t engage much during the performance and that there was a lack of crowd from beginning to end. They started with no cheers to a crowd full of them by the end. Things to focus on would be the guitarist despite playing well didn’t know how to act on the stage and seemed lost at times when performing but the bassist looked comfortable and in his element throughout. The keyboard player also got heavily into the set more than the rest of the band. All of the songs mashed together you couldn’t tell when one ended and one began which made a 30 minute set seem way longer and often left most confused especially when you’re a photographer only being given 3 songs to photograph.

Temperance, from Italy, comes on with much higher energy with theatrical performance. For genres like Symphonic Metal I feel like having them theatrical makes way more sense and in a way makes the whole performance way better that way you can tell a story with the songs that you’re performing. These guys have a very similar vibe to Amaranthe minus the third vocalist. Kristin Starkley, is the newest member of the band and her stage presence was actually unreal, her connection with Michele Guaitoli worked so perfectly it was like it was effortless. The guitar solos were done perfectly, and the switch over from each side of the stage was amazingly done to connect with each member of the audience from both sides. At this point the venue has filled up more but this is not a sold out show which unfortunately is obvious based on the free space, but the band don’t let it get to them. They have moments where they talk about their Italian Heritage which makes the crowd’s energy turn up for some reason but it brings smiles to people’s faces and that’s what matters.

Setlist:

  1. Daruma
  2. The Last Hope in a World of Hopes
  3. No Return
  4. Start Another Round
  5. A Hero Reborn
  6. Diamanti
  7. I Am the Fire
  8. Glorious
  9. Darkness is Just a Drawing
  10. Into the Void
  11. Of Jupiter and Moons
  12. Pure Life Unfolds

The lights start to go down as Sirenia intro tape begins to play. Drummer Michael Brush creeps through the dimly lit room, as soon as he’s in position the lights get a little brighter before he urges the crowd to get their energy raised. As the rest of the band follow not far behind him, vocalist Emmanuelle Zoldan greets the crowd with a smile, and a simple question is asked if they’re ready for the show to begin. They instantly rip straight into opener “Addiction No. 1”, this song brings a room full of life, which makes a perfect set opener. A surprise aspect of their set came halfway through, when they talked about the release of their new album called 1977 which came out last year through Napalm Records, and seeing how the demographic of those in attendance, most people came to hear their older songs.

The start of “Deadlight” which is a single from the new album gets the biggest reaction of the night. The chorus works well with the setting as everyone sings along in union with Emmanuelle who is having the absolute time of her life. As it’s been just over an hour of a set, the band leaves the stage playing what i love to call “metal peek a boo” as they eventually come back on to play their final song “The Path To Decay” which is another amazing performance from the band. These guys have been around since 2001, and with this tour they show absolutely no signs of slowing down.

Setlist:

  1. Addiction No. 1
  2. Dim Days of Dolor
  3. Into the Night
  4. In Styx Embrace
  5. Deadlight
  6. Lost in Life
  7. A Thousand Scars
  8. Treasure n’ Treason
  9. Nomadic
  10. Voyage, voyage
  11. Wintry Heart
  12. My Mind’s Eye
  13. The Other Side
  14. The Path to Decay

Words & images: Lauren Allard