Archive for November, 2016

Burning Midnight Oil

Posted in Uncategorized on November 17, 2016 by Sara Hammerzmith

So… last minute you could say… we decided to head off to London. Because honestly, this is what Lordi does to you – it’s the most addictive kind of band in the world, and even though you think you are going to be good off with seeing them twice or so, that never happens. The same situation happened last year – we went to three gigs, and then despite that, last minute decided to head off for the gig finale again.

Because of this, I’m honestly starting a special savings account only for the sake of “last minute Lordi trips”. So, this gig has been booked very quickly, and I’m somewhat impressed with myself for finding cheap flights and cheap hostels with only three days notice in fairly central London. Gotta give myself some creds for that. However, I’ll be leaving literally right after work, so I’ll see how that goes, haha!

So with that said, I’ll leave you with this half hearted half inspired blog entry, because I got a bag to pack, and a plane to catch. See you in London!

// Sara

SWEET CREATURE – The Devil Knows My Name

Posted in CDs, Music, Uncategorized on November 15, 2016 by Sara Hammerzmith

Sweet Creature is the new project of previous Crashdiet guitarist and current Sister bassplayer Martin Sweet. As someone who considers Crashdiet one of the bands closest to my heart,and being an avid Sister fan, I got pretty excited when the project was announced and pledged it right away. The singles didn’t disappoint either, so, when I finally got the album, I was thrilled!

Hearing Martin Sweet on the vocals is nothing but mixed feelings. I’ve heard him sing before, but on the same time it’s a bit odd – it’s almost like hearing Crashdïet, although a bit toned down, just with yet again a new singer. I really have to remind myself it’s not them. He has a pretty good voice though – I’ll give him that!

The album opens with “Not Like Others” which are filled with the typical sleaze-attitude you’ll find on pretty much any album in this genre, and the album continues in the same venue. I’d dare to say it’s a bit toned down as compared to previous works by Crashdïet, almost giving you a demo and retro feeling to it. The material on the album is pretty good – it’s got a bit of everything – big anthems and powerballads (I really, really like “Purpose In Life”, it’s beautiful). It’s decent materials – but nothing that really stands out for me right now, despite listening to the album several times. There are some moments on it – like “Purpose in Life” which I mentioned, single “Not like Others”, “Perfect Day”, “Burning Midnight Oil” and the titletrack. So, there’s a lot of potential.

I think this is a pretty good start – I think it’s noteworthy to keep in mind that all of the production that goes into this album is done by the band themselves, which adds to the whole feeling of it, if it makes any sense.

I think this album is very good as a start, but I do feel there’s a lot more to give. If you have the chance to check it out, please do! I think you’ll enjoy this little gem.

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// Sara

REVIEW: Herman Frank – The Devil Rides Out

Posted in CDs, Music, Uncategorized with tags , , on November 13, 2016 by Sara Hammerzmith

Herman Frank, mostly known as ex-guitarist in Accept is back with his third soloalbum, following the successes on “Loyal To None” and “Right in the Guts”. What makes this album remarkable different from the others, is that the band for the first time has a permanent line up, with Rick Altzi still doing the vocals.

“The Devil Rides Out” is a fun kind of party album as far as the music goes for the tunes. It’s cheerful tunes with a high class attitude riding through the sound of Herman’s strings. Certain tracks are heavier than others – while some being all about the melody, however, what really takes place and stands out are the guitarsolos, the album is basically about the guitar solos, except that one bass-based song “I Want It All”.

Lyrically it feels pretty typical in a way – I’m not sure how to properly describe it, but it has it all – the outcast songs, the “not-being-able-to-take-it-more” songs and heartache songs. My personal favorite on the album though, is “Ballhog Zone” which quite fittingly is the single, but what really gets me with that song are the lyrics.  About these people who act like they are on top of the world, and treats you thereafter, but in reality, at the end of the day, they are really the biggest losers, because what will they do when they stand there all alone?

It’s a pretty decent album. It has got some good potential, although it hasn’t exactly stuck on me just yet. If you’re into sweet riffs and heavy tunes though, this might be an album for you!

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(Label: AFM Records)

CDON I Amazon I Ginza

// Sara

Danse Macabre

Posted in Uncategorized on November 12, 2016 by Sara Hammerzmith

Travelday Travelday. Seriously these days… Got up lazily about half an hour before my checkout began, and wandered aimlessly about in Dublin for a while before I decided on a fancy pizzeria for some lunch. My plane didn’t leave until around 18 in the evening, so you could say I had some time to spare. I spent a good two or three hours in there before I figured it was time to find and AirLink bus and get my way back to the airport.

Sadly, I had forgotten to charge my phone while on the hotel, so I was hanging on to the last straws of percentages until I very very gladly found a charging station where I could at least get the percentage up a bit.

I figured if I went to the bathroom exactly the time boarding was supposed to start, I would have plenty of time to finish. But nope. By the time I was out of the bathroom – and I swear I only spent tops three minutes in there with the line and all – Final Call was already being brought out! Turns out there were very little people actually going on this plane, which was nice. A lot of space, not very noisy, and we departed 20 minutes too early. I don’t mind at all.

The flight home was a nice one. Me, my music and the neonlight looking cities beneath me. That is what I love so much about flying night time – that you see all the lights. All these beautiful maps of life beneath you, of people driving home from work, or perhaps to work, all these apartments with people living their every day life… its crazy to think about some times.

We landed ahead of time in Sweden, and our bags were already on the belt as we got to the collection hall, which is just perfect. I love when things run smoothly, when everything goes fast and there’s no unnecessary wait times. This allowed me to pick up some real late dinner at MAX before getting on my bus home.

Once home in Karlstad, I met up with Hanna, Andreas and Adam – some co workers of mine to get a ride home. Of course, Hanna had managed to forget her carkeys at the club she was working tonight, so it was a long and cold wait catching up with Adam, but it was so great. Great to see some familiar faces from home, making the longing for my piu piu friends seem a bit less.

So, with all of this being said, thank you each and everyone of you who were included in this tour. All the way from France up til the late night ride home from downtown – Laura, Cyril, Florian, Emilie, Ambre, Elize, Maffe, Paula, Sophie, Nathan, Gavin, Kacper, Annelise, Mike, the Brazilian couple, Mr Amen, Mr L, Mr OX, Miss Hella, Mr Mana, Delain, Silver Dust, Kobra and the Lotus, Shiraz Lane, Kissin’ Dynamite, Evergrey, Sonic Syndicate, Smash into Pieces, Adam, Andreas and Hanna. I love you all, thank you for this, it was well needed.

// Sara

Delain @ The Button Factory, Dublin, Ireland 11/11 – 16

Posted in Concerts, Music, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on November 11, 2016 by Sara Hammerzmith

So, as I left off in the last entry, at 5am in the morning did my precious, beautiful, loved above all friends left me alone in our suite. I decided to stay, after all, seeing that Delain was playing in Dublin today, and five years ago I left London the same day Sabaton played, and since that day I decided to never again leave a country or city the same day a band played. So, around 6am I went back to bed to sleep about…. three hours. My train from Galway was leaving at 11, so it wasn’t a whole lot of sleep, but it was at least something, you know? The only downpart is that one of my bosses rang me up and woke me up an hour early, so I do not know quite honestly exactly how much time I actually slept in the end.

So, up I got, hurried to pack everything and get ready, and then set off to Dublin. It was probably the longest trainride I have ever experienced in my entire life, gladly, Niki made it a bit more bearable by talking to me on the phone. I seriously hate it when you leave your bestfriends and then you are on your own.

So, around 14 I arrived in Dublin and went off to check into my hotel. After this, I met up with a friend and we hung around a bit in Dublin, walking around the streets, eating a bit – we didn’t have a lot of time seeing I arrived so “late” and the doors for Delain opened so soon.

So, we got back to our hotels, got ready for the show and went down to the Button Factory. The good thing is that, while being a big town, Dublin is fairly small so pretty much everything is within walking distance. Just a little bit after we entered the venue, Kobra and the Lotus began.

Kobra and the Lotus

They delivered a very good set. Good, and energetic. I love Kobra as a front woman, she really knows how to get a crowd going. It was a very, very enjoyable set and I’m glad we made it in time to catch them. At first, when I listened to them, I was a bit unsure but you know – nothing beats a good liveperformance.

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Evergrey

Fairly quickly after Kobra, Evergrey began their set. Once again they delivered a very very good set, enjoyable as hell even though I must admit I’m not a big fan of them. But, good show nonetheless!

After Evergrey, I quickly went to the bathroom only to run into a friend of mine, Jay! Even though I met her both of the two days before, it was still nice to see her outside the band, running into her like this. Very nice.

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Arrived back, in good time for Delain to start.

Delain

The lights went out, “The Monarch” began and the band walked onstage and opened strongly with “Hands of Gold”. Goddamn what a rush it is to see them again. Like I’ve said before, I wasn’t very convinced with “The Human Contradiction” but “Moonbathers”, holy hell, easily one of my top albums this YEAR! They followed up with “Suckerpunch” and then one of my personal favorites on the album “Glory and the Scum”. Seriously, I just love this song so much.

The band delivered extremely well, and it was really good to see them now on their first run in Ireland. Next on the list was “Get The Devil Out of Me” before my personal favorite all time with Delain started – “Pendulum”. Seriously, I cannot tell you enough how much I love this song – and it’s everything about it – the arrangements, the lyrics, the heaviness in the music mixed with heavy lyrics, easily my favorite on this album.

“Army of Dolls” and “The Hurricane” followed, then “April Rain” before it was time for another personal favorite of mine – “Here Come The Vultures”. Seriously, this one still gets me as much today as it did last year. Absolutely love it.

“Fire with Fire” and “Danse Macabre” – another two of my big favorites off “Moonbathers”. Seriously, I cannot get over how amazing “Danse Macabre” is, especially not live. So amazing. It gives me chills. They followed it up with “Sleepwalkers Dream” and “Stay Forever”.

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They then proceeded to start “The Gathering”, and seriously, I get chills everytime I hear this song. And I still regret not grabbing my company to ask them to dance with me during this song. It’s so good for that.

They wrapped up the set with “Pristine” before leaving the stage, only to return as normal and finished off the whole set with “Mother Machine”, “Don’t Let Go” and finally “We are the Others”.

Seriously, this show was so amazing. I am beyond happy that I stayed to see this show as well, it was worth every single little penny from the re-booking of the flight. Delain, everytime I see you, my love for you grows even bigger. If we are going to continue in this pace, you will soon be one of my big five bands. And it’s not a long road to walk for you. I love you.

We hung around a bit after the show to let the people leave, and then headed out for some drinks later in the night for some quality time, and then parting ways.

This was a really good day, though I must admit I really really miss my little piu piu tktktktktktk friends SO MUCH. I wish they could have been there with me.

// Sara

An Intimate Night with Lordi – A tale of Spit and Ice cubes: Part Two

Posted in Concerts, Music, Uncategorized with tags , , , on November 10, 2016 by Sara Hammerzmith

**** Lordi @ Monroe’s, Galway, Ireland 10/11 -16 *****

So. The lights went out. And then the very very well recognized bass tunes from “God of Thunder” and we just… exploded. Most of the arena did. Execept the two people next to us, who had so ferociously fought for their spots… why? Bites me. And then… “SCG:VII” and they started off the set with “Let’s Go Slaughter He-Man (I Wanna be the Beast Man in the Masters of the Universe)”

And this was just so weird. All that was between us and Lordi, where a pair of monitors and all of our stuff. I have been to shows before where there have been no fence, but seeing LORDI like this, LORDI without a proper stage show, NOTHING was just pure weird.

They followed up with “Babez for Breakfast” before stopping. Stopping to tell us that, they have no stage show tonight becasue of the small stage. And that they do not have any setlist, so it was up to us to choose what songs we wanted to hear. This left me standing there confused, because I had no idea what songs I’d want to hear. So, essentially, let the mainstream crowd decide. And of course, the first song of choice was “Hard Rock Halleujah”. What else do you expect from a pub in a smaller Irish city? So, “Hard Rock Halleujah” was next, followed by “Bringing Back The Balls to Rock”.

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Next song was one of the songs that were actually cut in Dublin – “Nailed by the Hammer of Frankenstein”. I felt a little uneasy when Mr L stood and proclaimed “WANNA HEAR A SONG ABOUT RAPING?” but you know… what can you do. It was good to hear it again though!

“Hug You Hardcore” followed and… all eyes turned to Nathan. You see, on the evening of the Presidential election, Nathan made a bet. That if Donald Trump wins, he will take off his top and swing it over his head in “Hug You Hardcore”. And seeing that Donald Trump actually won, he had to own up to it. And fair enough, in the last chorus of the song we did indeed see Nathan take his shirt off and swing it over his head. I fucking loved it.

I’m going to apologize right here – I didn’t keep proper tags on the setlist, so some of the songs can be a bit out of order. Next song on the list was “Blood Red Sandman”, and I think that somewhere along here, they also threw in “Rock the Hell Outta You” and “Bite it Like a Bulldog”. And also, somewhere along here, we had ice cubes coming our way, because apparently, one bandmember thought it was time for us to “cool down” a bit. Seriously, I love this band.

After “Blood Red Sandman”… it was time for our little moment. “It Snows in Hell”. Since there were no actual fence, what happened is that we created pillows and matresses out of our stuff, and simply laid down on it, like as on the floor. And as soon as we got ourselves comfortable, we saw a very familiar face getting very close to us, having water dripping, or more like, spilling out of his mouth all over us, drenching us worse than he has ever done before. He then proceeded to dedicate the first line to us, as per usual.

And then.. “Children of the Night”. And this people. This is where it got fucking serious alright. Lordi had no stage props. Nothing. So, I guess, Mr Lordi saw an oppurtunity and he took it. He used us in the song. He showed us off to the audience, that he hid us under the floor, because us being here made him sore, and that we still gotta be there, that we are not going anywhere…. At first I thought he was just singing the first line to us as usual, but soon enough I noticed he was actually fucking USING US AS PROPS. What a rush! What an absolute rush, to be used as props, completely unexpectedly. I loved this song so much already from the start, but now the song is just closer to heart than it ever was before.

“Who’s Your Daddy?” followed, “The Riff” next before they did “Down with the Devil”. We tried out our new little trick for “Down with the Devil”, which will probably only work for this show because of the flightcase, it was funny.

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As we notice the band getting ready to wrap up their set, we start chanting “HELLA! HELLA! HELLA!” Because yes. They didn’t have any stage show. But they had one thing they could do. Or she could do. And after we chanted a bit, she indeed started stripping for us.

And I guess this is what made this show so special. Sure, it was a very special, weird and odd show to start with, but what made it even more special for us, is the fact that it felt like we were the only fans that existed for the band. So much interactions, so many “inside jokes” with the band, out of nowhere, so many things they wound up doing for, and to us. I can’t really get over this.

They wrapped the whole set up with “Devil is a Loser” and “Would you Love a Monsterman?” before they left the stage and we just stood there in awe. What an amazing show. What a fucking show. It was so good, and weird to see them like this. The only fucking minus though, is all those people who created fake mosh pits. You know, those people who think that just because they are at a metal show they can behave any way they want. It hurt us a couple of times, especially those times we almost knocked over Lordi’s monitors. Nice, huh?

After the show, we hung around a bit trying to comprehend it all, before making our way down to the merch. Myself, I picked up on the “Hug Me Hardcore” shirt, and Paula on some other things. I think Sophie also got some stuff. We had met up with a Polish guy, Kacper, before the show, so together with him, and with Mike of course (the angel brought us water bottles!!) made our way back to Lordis stage to take one last picture together, to treasure this moment forever.

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We said a last good bye to everyone in the venue, Kacper leaving early before me, Soph, Paula, Nate, Mike and Gavin made our way outside the tourbus for some more hanging out and catching up. After Mike had went to bed (hehe) we went over to Lordi’s tourbus to say good bye to everyone… but only to regret it. A stupid group of drunk people had made their way there, knocking on the tourbus, even trying to BREAK INTO the tour bus a couple of times, making us very very embarrassed to be there. Gladly, they weren’t with us.

After some time, we said good bye to Gavin and went back home to our hotel – but at this time, it was already 4 in the morning, and having a train leaving at 5 we saw no point in trying to go to bed, so we spent one last hour together, on the floor in one of the bedrooms talking about how much we love this silly little band from Finland, and how amazing this trip had been.

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paulis

Thank you guys. So fucking much. This trip was beyond amazing.

// Sara

An Intimate Night with Lordi – a tale of Spit and Ice cubes: Part 1

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , on November 10, 2016 by Sara Hammerzmith

**** Lordi @ Monroe’s, Galway, Ireland 10/11 -16 *****

So, we got up at about 8 in the morning to get ready to leave for Galway, which was easier said than done. Gladly, I had gotten a really really cute Leap card – their buscards with FROGS on them, so getting to the busstation was actually easier than it could have ended up being. We got on the train.. And you know, I got flashbacks from Clermont-Ferrand earlier this year.

It was the same group of dead-tired pathetic looking crowd that got on a train sitting there staring deadly at each other. After a while, we one by one drozed of to sleep, or well, not all at the same time but… You know, we slept like three hours, and despite that, it’s difficult to fall asleep. I don’t know if it’s the excitement or if I’m just waay too used to sleeping very little, but hard it was.

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After some time, we finally made it to Galway and the first person we run into at the trainstation is no one less than Gavin himself! Good seeing him again. We got out on the road, or well, out in the small little village that is Galway and found ourself a really cute little pub to sit down and eat in. We decided to try the Galway Hooker beer, because I swear to God – ever since I came to Ireland, I haven’t been able to NOT sing “Galway Hooookerrrrr, hot little motherfucker”

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Once done with lunch / dinner / whatever it was, we headed off to check into our hotel, or, our SUITE. Because, despite being one million stairs, there was indeed a good nice suite waiting for us at the top, and holy hell. We sort of wish this was the suite we had when we were in Dublin. The balcony alone was bigger than our room in Dublin! And this hotel was even CHEAPER than in Dublin! What are the odds.

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Anyway. We started getting ready for the show. Reluctantly. Very, very reluctantly. WE HAD A SUITE GODDAMN IT, WHY WOULD WE WANT TO LEAVE?

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But of course, we also need to be in line, because seriously, if we went this far, why would we let those front row spots get lost? So, said and done, we headed off toward the venue. After some walking, we finally made it there, and we were greeted with a small little pub. Mike came out and greeted us, and informed us that the supportbands would play on a different stage than Lordi. Which made us feel rather… uncomfortable. What do we do? We really wanted to see Silver Dust, but then what? Nathan then so graciously offered to skip out on Silver Dust, and we managed to hook up a girl, named Paula, to also help out as she was only interested in Shiraz Lane. That was super, super nice of her!

So, the queueing went on. We got to dance around to “SOWCA” a bit while the rehearsed, hung out with each other, got superkind gifts from Mike in the shape of drinks, chocolate and an album with his old band Monstersound.

After a while, Paula, Sophie and I went back to the hotel for a bathroom break, but also to collect my phone and dinner for everyone who wanted it, and then back to the venue for some more hanging out before the show, as another guy had joined us. Seriously.

I was asked, why do you go to the venue so early? What is the point? And this is the point. The point is that we are all there together, with only each other at the only company and entertainment. No TV to distract us, no computers, nothing. We do have phones, sure, but they are sooo rarely used when hanging out like this. I promise you that.

As the clock approached 21, the guards got ready to finally open the door, only to be told by the manager that they had to wait another half an hour. We were sort of taken aback from the late opening hours. 21.30. For a Lordi show? It felt so odd, but getting it really confirmed from reliable sources, it had to be it. BUT FINALLY, the clock hit 21.30 and we were let in.

So, we ran up the venue only to get very confused. I asked the merch girl that, where the hell do I go? And she showed the way. But first, we went up to Lordis stage and it was the most pathetic and adorable thing I have seen. The only thing even rescembling a fence was a flight case, on which we nailed up the flag and put our stuff before getting into the hall where Silver Dust was playing. Seriously. So cute. So intimate. And how do we do “It Snows In Hell”?

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We went into the second room, only to noticing it being completely empty. Also without any sort of fence. We went up close to the stage, where the drummer was already waiting for the show to start, and you know, it always feels so awkward. We just stood there and smallchatted with Mike before the show finally started.

Silver Dust

So, for the day, they actually got to use their magic mirror! It showed us an enchanted opening scene, that I barely dared to look at in case of surprise moments, but it was all good! So, the rest of the band joined him on stage, and they fired off yet another amazing show. Seriously, it’s so mindblowingly good, I can’t get over this band – where have they been my entire life? I’m especially fond of the finale – where everyone is playing the drums. I love it. I love this band. Holy hell. Thank you!

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After Silver Dust, we went back to Lordis arena – I didn’t really WANT to skip Shiraz Lane, but what can you do? When we came back, we noticed some very special people had tried to claim our spots. We tried arguing with them, but stupid people are stupid – and apparently, these people have never been to a metal show before, so we gave up. In the end, it doesn’t matter, because we still got good spots, and all was fine.

Once Shiraz Lane was over, the people started gathering in the Lordi section and then… Lights out…

To Be Continued

// Sara