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Thursday, February 10, 2011

Eluveitie -- Lawrence, KS -- February 10th, 2011

That's it. It's decided: Folk metal concerts are the most fun concerts in the entire world. I've never seen a more energetic crowd throughout such a long set dancing, moshing, singing, chanting, etc. than I have for a Lawrence, KS crowd on a freezing Thursday night. It was, to say the least, epic.

But it definitely didn't start out epic.

System Divide was definitely the odd man out on this tour. If they didn't have the female vocals, I'd completely write them off as a Whitechapel-worship band, but it wasn't as bad as I expected. Lots of breakdowns and the guitars just sounded like a wall of noise at times. They had a lot of energy, though. Not my favorite openers, but they woke the crowd up.

After them was Holy Grail. I expected them to sound a lot like a younger and more aggressive Iron Maiden. I wasn't completely off the mark, but they were still fun. They had some amazing twin guitar solos and the vocalist could really hit those high notes. Some songs seemed to drag on way too long, though. I'd love to see their counter-band White Wizzard and compare the two!

The first band I came for was 3 Inches Of Blood. They have a history of cancelling shows on Lawrence (I was at one that they eventually canceled) but they definitely made up for it. I was down in the pit for most of them and they sounded great, but the closer I got to the stage, the less I could hear Cam. Other than that, they were definitely on their game. "Goatrider's Horde" and "Deadly Sinners" sounded great as always, but their new one, "Lords Of Change" sounded GREAT. I think it might win back the fans they lost from their latest album. Would've loved Wykydtron, but 3IOB was fantastic all around.

Although the sound was spotty early on, it was quickly fixed and Eluveitie worked the crowd into a frenzy. Just the combination of their woodwind instruments, violin, hurdy-gurdy and the typical metal sound is just amazing in a live setting. The crowd clapped along, the pit was very active the entire set, and the hurdy-gurdy player even successfully got an audience in a Kansas college town to sing the lyrics to an ancient Celtic song. That's impressive! I will say the sound suffered just a bit because the members switched up instruments a lot, but overall it was managed very well. The vocalist was great with interacting with the crowd. Singing along with "Inis Mona" was really, really fun. Highlights were Tegernak├┤ , Your Gaulish War, and Thousandfold. One of the all-around best performances I've ever seen! It was their first time in Kansas, but I really hope they'll be back soon!

Sets were the same all around:

System Divide

Purity in Imperfection
An Intoxicating Affair
The Apex Doctrine
Vagaries of Perception

Holy Grail

Immortal Man
Call of Valhalla
Crisis in Utopia
Hollow Ground
My Last Attack
Fight to Kill

3 Inches of Blood

The Goatrider's Horde
Destroy the Orcs
Lords of Change (new song)
Trial of Champions
Premonition of Pain
Night Marauders
Deadly Sinners
Battles and Brotherhood


Otherworld (intro)
Bloodstained Ground
Grey Sublime Archon
Your Gaulish War
Inis Mona
Slanias Song
Quoth the Raven
The Song of Life
Kingdom Come Undone


Primordial Breath
Uis Elveti

System Divide - 5/10
Holy Grail - 7.5/10
3 Inches Of Blood - 8.5/10
Eluveitie - 9.5/10

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