Archive for sabaton

Sabaton @ Festhalle, Frankfurt, Germany 31/1 – 20

Posted in Concerts, Music, The Great Tour 2020, Uncategorized with tags , , , on March 23, 2020 by Sara Hammerzmith

[These blogs has been long in the making. And with everything coming to a complete halt at the moment, I’m taking the time to revive it all. Perhaps it’ll even help you all cope? Who knows. Only issue, this particular show I have no photos from as far as I know. And I apologize beforehand for the extreme lack of photos.]

So, it was time for yet another show of this amazing band, or perhaps more this amazing tour. For this day, I gently hopped on the bus in my other homecity of Antwerp to head over to Frankfurt. And the thing is… I have this kind of hate-love relationship with FlixBus. It’s like 50/50. Sometimes its fine, sometimes it’s not. And so far in this tour, I had been in no rush and everything worked smoothly.

But of course, since I was in a rush today – scheduled to arrive approx two hours before door opening, the bus was delayed. Because why not right? So, half an hour delay, I meet up with Daniel at the busstation and then pass by my hotel to check in where I ran into MORE issues because, lets face it, I have a shitty handwriting. But, at the end all was cool.

We headed over to a sushirestaurant for some dinner and light catch up before continuing on to the venue. Seeing that Amaranthe, as mentioned before, is the opening band and it’s a favorite band of both of us we had to make it in time. Which we did!

Amaranthe

Exactly on time they started, “Helix” intro rolling first shortly into “Maximize” intro and the show was a fact. For tonight, we had decided to stay back a bit so we didn’t exactly have the perfect view,or may that be exactly what we did have?

“Digital World” was next song on the list, with an evergreat energy in the crowd as well as on stage! “Hunger” followed suit and then “Amaranthine” before it was time for Henrik to have his little moment in “GG6”. This song has grown so incredibly much on me after seeing more and more live.

My own personal favorite in “Helix” – this song will never ever stop being the BOMB. Seriously. It’s massive. Anyway, this song was next, perfect executiom, what else, and then Nils comes out to ask for some audience participation and it’s time for “That Song”.

The show is later wrapped up with “Call Out My Name”, “The Nexus” and lastly “Drop Dead Cynical”.

After the show, I headed out for the bathroom and then had quite an interesting time to find my way back to Daniel, but gladly so I did!

As far as Apocalyptica goes, we only stayed for the songs where Elize sang before going outside to grab some merch as well as taking a little walk for my restless legs. Was handy as hell!

Making our way back into the venue we are at the complete end of the venue, and to be honest I don’t mind in the slightest. Sometimes, the most fun you can have is at the end. And I tend to say to people – if you are always at the front, it means you aren’t touring enough, or doing it the right way.

Sabaton

As the soundtrack version worked its way through the list and later landing in “In Flanders Fields” when the lights went out, the longawaited show was finally about to begin. The new intro for “Ghost Division” echoed and then the show was at large.

“Great War” is shouted out from stage as the pyro set the arena on fire… not literally, but almost.

A gasmask appears on the screen behind them, and the band comes out clad in gasmasks through the green smoke that has been sent out on stage and Joakim comes out in his complete costume ready to gas some Germans… Oh wait.

After we’re done with THAT part, we head over to “Seven Pillars of Wisdom” which is ever such a delight, and then “Diary of an Unknown Soldier” and then it was time yet again for “The Lost Battalion”

The little airplane was yet again rolled out on stage with Joakim singing the beautiful little IKEA song for us before letting the actual Red Baron on stage to excute “The Red Baron” for us.

“The Last Stand” followed suit together with “82nd All The Way”. If those two songs aren’t all the rage, I don’t know which songs are. The intro with the redlights and sirens started off, alerting us of the “Night Witches”.

Apocalyptica came on stage and they started off their part with “Angels Calling”. I have probably said it before, and I will say it again – the song has gotten quite a facelift with these fellas. “Fields of Verdun” was next on the list before moving onto “The Price of a Mile”.

“Dominium Maris Baltici” was executed next with the cello guys and the two songs – “Lion from the North” as well as “Carolus Rex” from the Swedish Empire era was ripped off before it was time for the band to say thanks and good night.

After a little whiles wait the storming of Normandie showed up on the screens, and “Primo Victoria” was fired off. And for the first time in my life – I have practiced my whole life for this – I jumped through the entire song. 40 shows later, I finally achieved what I’ve been training my whole.. well life as a Sabaton fan for. And I did it.

And I will never do it again.

The water started flowing on the screen and we embarked the “Bismarck” once again for the battle. “Swedish Pagans” followed suit and then the show was wrapped up with “To Hell and Back”.

Amazing show. Nothing but an amazing show. After the show, I darted toward the crowd to start collecting propaganda flyers. People even helped me, complete strangers. Daniel managed to meet up with Cyril who had apparently forgotten I was gonna be there and exclaimed excitedly “YOU ARE HERE!!!”.

As I crawled around collecting flyers around the soundguys booth, I hear someone faintly say “Hey”. As I look up, I see one of the guys working handing me a setlist. I thank him the best I can, but in hindsight I can’t decide – did he give it to me because he decided I was a dedicated fan, or did he just think I was pathetic? No matter the reason – I am so thankful.

After all was said and done, we said our good byes and retreated home. I had quite an early bus tomorrow.. And trust me, I was not excited for that.

// Sara

Sabaton @ Papp László Sportaréna, Budapest, Hungary 22/1 – 20

Posted in Concerts, Music, Uncategorized with tags , on January 30, 2020 by Sara Hammerzmith

So, on it again we were! Time for another show on this amazing tour. But this time around, I had landed in Budapest at my dear friend Szilvi’s place. For the occasion, Marci had gotten us early entrance tickets (at least me and her) so, about an hour before the doors opened with decided to go wait in line. We might have early entrance, doesn’t mean we’ll be first in unless we wait in line.

A few people were in front of us, and quite a few decided to queue jump – next time I’ll kill you just so you know – but at the end of the day, we all made it. We secured the same kind of spots infront of Tommy as I had in Zürich, so at the end of the day -all was well.

Cyril got to join us a little later and we convinced him to try to join us, because you never know once the crowd starts moving right?

And then, the lights went out and it was time for Amaranthe to start.

Amaranthe

The “Helix” intro rolled out in the crowd and the band started off with “Maximize”. Elize as regal as always entering in her large cape taking the space on top of the stage like the actual queen she is.

“Digital World” followed suit, and it was just as epic as the show before. Not much to complain about when it comes to this band, they are pro’s. “Hunger” followed suit before it was time to dial it down a bit with “Amaranthine” again. Yet again an amazing performance from Nils and Elize, true royals!

“GG6” and Henriks own little moment followed up later, and then my personal favorite once again in “Helix”. And after this, however, it was time for a little change.

Instead of doing “Endlessly”, as they did in Zürich, it was now time for “That Song” instead. Which.. was a downpoint for me. I reallt don’t like this song. But oh well, what can you do right?

“Call out my Name” was next on the list before the show was wrapped up elegantly with “The Nexus” and the party song “Drop Dead Cynical”.

Another amazing show by the band, well enjoyable and amazing. So happy to have seen them again, even though I can sometimes.. Lose it for them, it is always instantly made up once you get to a show.

After a little bit of wait, it was time for Apocalyptica. And speaking of that. The girls standing next to us actually left, giving Cyril a front row spot. Like I said, you never know right?

Apocalyptica

Again the men got on stage and started off their set. It was yet again a pleasureable set, even though I find myself hard to enjoy it to the fullest, except when Elize joins them on stage and turns everything into pure perfection. But with that said, thank you again Apocalyptica!

The mood went down once again and got a bit epic with the symphonic sountrack echoing again, and it really does set the mood, doesn’t it? And with that, “In Flanders Fields” echoed everywhere, and the show was on..

Sabaton

The intro for “Ghost Division” started and another bombastic start to a grand show was on. “Great War” followed suit as per usual, and then it was time for “Attack of the Dead Men”.

And.. It’s possible I didn’t pay attention enough in Zürich, but for this time around, ALL of the bandmembers came out on stage in gasmasks. They threw them off by the second verse, but holy hell! That was pretty wild.

“Seven Pillars of Widsom” followed suit and then “Diary of the Unknown Soldier” announced the appearance of “The Lost Battalion”. The energy in the venue was pretty good actually, a bit better than in Zürich. Maybe because I stood right next to a knucklehead who was dedicated and into it, but for some reason always held out a flag right infront of me and my friends eyesights. Sigh.

“The Red Baron” came up next and I STILL THINK THAT JOAKIM DESTROYS THIS BY TALKING. Just let Richthoven enter and let him just start the intro without so much talking. If you wanna talk about the organ, do it AFTER. Please? But still, this part is amazingly lit and it’s probably my favorite part of the shows.

The bells for “The Last Stand” appeared on the screen and another amazing execution of that was made, followed by “82nd All The Way”.

The stage went dark, and sirens and red lights appeared as “Nightwitches” was about to be played, with another amazing execution, can’t really complain here. But I will come to later…

Apocalyptica joined forces on stage, and it was time for “That part” of the show, starting off with “Angels Calling”. While, like I think I mentioned before, it has never been a major favorite for me, I’m still SO HAPPY that these older, REAL OLDER, songs are making their way back into the setlist.

They kept the boys on stage, and “Fields of Verdun” followed suit, then “Price of a Mile”.

As the Apocalyptica boys were doing “Dominium Maris Baltici”, the whole band left the stage and much to my surprise, they all came back clad in a caroleans officer jacket, and this time much more detailed than the one Jocke’s had before, and “The Lion From The North” was next.

And then, it was time for “Carolus Rex”. Normally, as a swede, this part of the show is my jam right. There might be moments where I’m like.. This part is the best or that is the best, BUT, this is my jam. And I’m unforgiving.

So when Joakim starts “Carolus Rex” by singing “Proved in battle…” I was just like… EXCUSE ME.

WHAT. ARE. YOU. FUCKING. SINGING?

And I remain unimpressed for a real long time, even though gladly he got on the right track. I’m really so unforgiving, aren’t I?

The band left the stage after this (SERVES THEM RIGHT) and the intro video for “Primo Victoria” showed its face, and the band came back to whipout the last few songs – “Bismarck”, “Swedish Pagans” and lastly “To Hell And Back”. WITH PROPAGANDA FLYERS. I was unreasonably happy when these were sent out. It’s not even okay. But I just love them okay?

After the show, we stayed by the barrier just a little longer time, and gladly we did! I got handed a setlist by one of the crewguys thanks to it. Thank you! Love you!

After the show, we hung around, caught up with some other friends and then we headed home.. for like… three hours of sleep.

Thank you everyone involved in this, Szilvi, Marci, Cyril – you are the best.

// Sara

Sabaton @ Hallenstadion, Zürich, Switzerland 17/1 – 20

Posted in Concerts, Music, Uncategorized with tags , , , on January 27, 2020 by Sara Hammerzmith

And here it is at last. The tourstart for The Great Tour. At first, I wasn’t exactly pumped for it, BUT, one day, when walking down the Promenade on deck 5 on the boat, hearing them blast “The Lost Battalion” really made me want this part of my gigantic tour to come.

And then yet, once home in Belgium I lost the will for it again, but this time I blame the jetlag for that. But, inevitably, the time was here now, and I was actually pretty excited. We headed over to the venue to start lining at 12-13 somewhere between there, and there wasn’t a lot of people, but some.

Later on, I found Cyril and met Océane, which was pleasant! Once it was time for us to be let in.. it kind of became chaos. I think people don’t really have much of respect for who was there first and not, and the venue itself was complicated too. First inside and then try to find the hall for the standings. But teaming up with Cyril and Océane helped getting into somewhat the spots we wanted, so at the end of the day, getting sick as a chyte would be worth it.

We took a bit of turns going to the bathroom and quickly checking out the merch before the wait for Amaranthe began, and precisely at 19, it started.

Amaranthe

With the intro of Helix, slowly emerging into the intro of “Maximise” Amaranthe one by one entered the stage and hit it off with aforementioned song. Elize comes out on stage like a regal goddess in her new stage attire, the biggest piece a regal cape. Absolutely stunning.

Surprisingly, the crowd didn’t seem to feel Amaranthe at all. Which.. surprises me. I always took them for being pretty popular in most places, but I guess not here? Well well, more for me!

After this rather grand opening, the band went straight into “Digital World” which is pretty much anyones headbang jam, if they really are headbangers that is, and then into “Hunger” which holds pretty much the same position.

They slowed it down a notch with the next song, “Amaranthine” and we had yet another beautiful moment with this song. This song really is grand, isn’t it? And she executes it so perfectly.  From this, straight into my own personal favorite “Helix” (I’m so happy this one made the cut, I was really worried, haha!) and it was time for Henrik to have his little moment in “GG6” as he and Elize battle it out together.

Elize is in my eyes always the winner, and she showed exactly why in the next song, “Endlessly” where she pretty much put everyone who ever tried to hate on her to shame. Time for some more upbeat following next in “Call Out My Name” before they wrapped up an amazing “tourstart” with “The Nexus” and “Drop Dead Cynical”.

Thank you so much for an amazing start. This was way too short, and I can’t wait to see them more times on this tour, and then their little headline show later.

And with that, the wait for Apocalyptica began. Which, gladly, wasn’t too long.

Apocalyptica

So, I regret to inform you all that I’m not too familiar with Apocalyptica. I’m very familiar with their concept, and saw them live before, BUT – I am not familiar with their own stuff, so it won’t be a very detailed rundown sadly on their show.

They did however play a very good show, and the few songs performed with Elize was nothing but pure perfection. The show was more enjoyable than I thought it would be, so that is also a huge plus. Thank you so much Apocalyptica!

Throughout the venue, the soundtrack to the Great War started echoing out, as per usual by now I suppose – I don’t mean to sound rude, it’s just that, if you attend one show then you just know how the routine works now, am I right?

As the stage was being set, the album continued before the volume was upped a few notches the “In Flanders Fields” echoes.

Sabaton

After this sweet serenade intro, the newmade intro for “Ghost Division” went on and off they went opening with.. “Ghost Division”. I had hopes. I had hopes. But no more. A bombastic and energetic intro as per usual, not much has changed.

“Great War” was next song on the list, and I don’t think song as well as the execution will ever stop to be as epic as it is. For the next song, Joakim briefly left the stage and let the band start off “The Attack of the Dead Men” themselves, and then he comes back out and he is clad from head to toe in a gasmask and uniform, walking around with a gas dispenser. Wow, what an upgrade! Slowly but surely, the performance is starting to live up to the songs!

He left the stage again to get “undressed” and soon came back to announce that the next song would be “Seven Pillars of Wisdom”. And if this song isn’t all the rage, I don’t know what is. The band left the stage momentarily and “Diary of an Unknown Soldier” and set off with “The Lost Battalion”.

A very interesting looking piano, or apparently organ, was brought on stage. The organ has the shape of Richthovfen’s Albatross plane, or at least some parts of it built like it. Joakim joked around a bit with “Swedish Pagans” and then introduced an organplayer dressed up as Manfred and off they went with “The Red Baron”.

And YES. I just say YES. This is a step in the right direction. This is somewhat something I actually always pictured they’d do. The only thing I personally wish they did was to cut the talking and just shut down the lights and let this dude do his thing amongst blinking red lights… Skip the talk, really!

“The Last Stand”, pretty much my personal highlight on the entire show came next, although these days I can’t really hear it the same way anymore. I’m not sure if that is a good thing or a sad thing, but oh well right?

“82nd All The Way” was next on the list, and then “Nightwitches” which actually came as a surprise for me, that it comes THIS early in the setlist. But oh well?

From here on, some familiar faces in the forms of Apocalyptica joined the stage, and the band set off to perform “Angels Calling”. While I never really enjoyed this song, ever, I’m still happy to see some old songs make their way back into their setlist, if they were ever on it from the start.

Joakim figured it’d be a great idea to keep Apocalyptica for a few more songs, and so they did “Fields of Verdun”, “The Price of a Mile” as well as “Lion from the North” and “Carolus Rex” was all performed together with Apocalyptica.

After Carolus, they left the stage and the introvideo to “Primo Victoria” started rolling, and the encores were set ablaze.. literally.

“Bismarck” followed suit and then finally “Swedish Pagans”. Although, I sense that the crowd here didn’t really ask that much for it. It’s finally dying! The whole hype is finally dying!

After this, they wrapped up the set with “To Hell and Back” and the show was over.

It was an amazing show, although sans propaganda flyers for us front rowers? What? Well, anyway. It is what it is, right? After the show I headed over to the merch and bought the posters, and I’ll look into more merch on later shows.

So, once again. An amazing tourstart. Finally things are starting to happen. It’s becoming something. Finally!

// Sara

 

Sabaton Cruise X – The Battle Ship: Part 4

Posted in Concerts, Music, Uncategorized with tags , , on December 15, 2019 by Sara Hammerzmith

And so they started rolling the intro, which again consisted of at first almost, ALMOST the entire soundtrack edition of the album before loudly presenting “In Flanders Fields”. I guess this just is the intro now.

The water started flowing on the screen and distant orchestrations started echoing as “Bismarck” opens up the entire show. Incredible opening, loving it already from the start! “Far From The Fame” came up next, and the energy was a fact!

Throwing us far back in time with the next song, as they continue on with “Attero Dominatus”. Most people who know me as a Sabaton fan knows that this song, or particularly album, holds a special place for me as it was my first. And not to mention, what a killer way to get it going, right?

“Winged Hussars”, my complete headbang jam was next on the list, not a major surprise, but still a pleasant moment. “Shiroyama” followed suit, and the danceparty was a fact, as per usual. What a shame our assigned Shiroyama wasn’t here, but maybe next time?

One of my absolute top favorites, “The Last Stand”, also known as my fucking jam, was next on the list, and there is no way to describe the complete and total euphoria that is created when this song has been sent off the rails.

Another one of my personal favorite and a pretty damn rare one came up next. “Smoking Snakes”. It shouldn’t be too much of a surprise, given they are set to play in Brazil after this cruise, but it was still an extremely, EXTREMELY pleasant surprise!

“Resist and Bite” followed suit before it was time for “The Price of a Mile” which has, since the summer and the entrance of The Great War made a nice re-entrance in the set, and I’m so happy it has.

“Screaming Eagles” was a well-needed temporise in the set, before it was time for…

…”Panzerkampf”, yet another extremely underrated song was next on the list. Why, oh why Sabaton, is this one not a fixed song in the setlist? You know extremely well that the fans love it. More than love it. Obsess it, they crave that mineral.

“White Death” came next, another one of my favorites which (for non-Finland people) is pretty uncommon – dare I assume that the “amount” of Finnish songs is due to the fact the just playing in Finland right before this boat? Yes, yes it is.

“The Red Baron” was next, and we for the first time, for me, are being introduced with this with the intro that I have since day one said they should use. The intro, and red lights, and FINALLY this is what they do. Can they read my mind, or am I just that good? Hard to tell. And this song is such a kick in the gut, ALWAYS.

Dance party in “82nd All The Way” followed, so quite a few dance parties on this set before it was time for another few workouts – one in “Primo Victoria” and one with “To Hell and Back”, two both jumping songs.

And with that, the show was over and Celine Dion’s hit single “My Heart Will Go On” as usual when ending on a cruise, echoes out. And as someone said, metalheads guilty pleasure sure is Celine Dion.

We actually remained in the venue, but waited out most of the people before retreating forward toward the stage, primarily to say hello to some friends at the front, but figured we’d stick around in this position since Civil War was due in a bit of time.

And with that, the lights went out and the band entered the stage.

Civil War

Intro rolled and they opened the show with “USS Monitor”, which isn’t exactly the biggest surprise to us who has been into the band for some time by now. It wasn’t the largest crowd that had made their way there, which is both sad and good in a way. Sad, that they aren’t attracting more of a crowd, good because this means, hopefully, that the people who were there were there for them, and not for their past.

Surprisingly, however, is the fact that the next song on the list is “Bay of Pigs”. I did not, in any way, see that one coming. So early in the set? I don’t complain, not at all. I love this song, and the mood it gets you in.

“Lucifer’s Court” followed suit, and I can’t describe the feeling of this song. It’s just something in it that just gives away, you know? “Saint Patrick’s Day” was next on the list, before “Gettysburg” and the time for the new single to be ripped off, “Dead Man’s Glory”. Nice one, for reals.

“I Will Rule The Universe” was next on the list – I think – I may not have the order completely correct I have to admit. It’s either this or “Gods and Generals” – one of them – before they wrapped up the set and left the stage for a short moment.

They returned back, and kicked off the encores with “Tombstone” which ALWAYS AND FOREVER will be my jam when it comes to this band. That. Is. One. Incredible. One.

They wrapped up the whole set with “Rome is Falling” and I had a bit of an encounter here, an incredibly humbling one. Daniel Mÿhr decided to go out in the crowd, for whatever reason, I guess to get the crowd going. He passed just by me and walked further in the crowd, and passing me again on the way out, and I motioned him to pass so I could continue clapping.

He stops. I stop. We stare at each other and in a suprised manner he just says “HI!” and looks at me and I awkwardly says hello and he hugs me and says he’s so happy to see me there, but that he has to go back to the stage. I tell him to just go go go! I never asked to interrupt his time. It’s very humbling, as the last memory of ever interacting with him personally dates 10 years back in time. I must have made an impression.

And with that, the show was over. We said good bye to some last friends before going outside, where we met up Joris. Who thought it was an excellent idea for him and Ivan to carry me back to the cabin like the queen I am. It was an extremely surprised Misa who opened the door that Joris had knocked on with the help of my foot. And with that, we retreated to the cabin, talked about what had happened and eventually drifted off to sleep…

To be Continued…

 

Sabaton Cruise X – The Battle Ship: Part 2

Posted in Concerts, Music, Uncategorized with tags , , on December 11, 2019 by Sara Hammerzmith

Once the soundtrack edition reached “Fields of Verdun” it did a gigantic leap from there onto “In Flanders Fields” which serves our intro for the night. Grand, yes it is.

And, as per usual, “Ghost Division” is the opening song. I’ll be damned with this song, I’m telling you. I’ll be damned. But great energy, right? Even for us, I’ll admit. The excitement hit the roof!

“Great War” was the grand next song on the list, and if this isn’t the perfect continuing, then I don’t know what is. The stagelights turned green, and I’ll admit I was at first a wee bit surprised at it’s arrival this early in the set, but “Attack of the Dead Men” was next on the list and the hilarity ensues.

At some point through the number of times I’ve seen Sabaton, I just kind of stopped paying 110% attention to the show, and more focused on having fun. In any sort of way possible. The set continued on with “Saboteurs”, a song I want to say I haven’t heard in quite some time which sadly is a lie, yet I’d still say it’s a rare one!

While the joke is starting to get a bit old, it seems to continuously entertain the crowd. Telling the crowd they are about to play “Swedish Pagans”, but instead start playing a different song, in this case, “40:1”. Which is a much, much better option to the aforementioned song. They followed the vein of Polish pagans by performing “Uprising” next. Seriously, I can not ever get enough of this song.

“Carolus Rex” was the next song on the list, and as you can imagine – the cruise might be international, but you can still sense it. The seriousness, and the buildup from the primary Swedish crowd… It’s amazing. “Talvisota”, another rarity (unless you are from like Finland) showed its face, much to everyone’s pleasure!

The red lights went on, the sirens out and it was time for Misa’s assigned song “Nightwitches”. Assigned songs? That’s another story. But it was the complete rage of our group! Lights out once again as the story of the unknown soldier echoes out and “The Lost Battalion” was next.

There was time for yet another “Swedish Pagans” joke, but this time they ended up performing “Seven Pillars of Widsom” instead, which is a first for all of us in the group. They originally deubted this song at the last show of the NA tour, in Silver Springs to be more exact, so despite that and possibly the Helsinki show, this is a rather new addition!

The very so familiar spoken words from an album released long ago started, and it made me so incredibly happy. “The Art of War” remains my top favorite Sabaton song ever, and everytime they decide to pop it out – it’s one of those come and go songs – my heart skips another beat and I’m in a state of total euphoria.

Which didn’t last all too long since my not so much favorite song “Fields of Verdun” followed suit, but gladly, it was just a little grounding moment as my personal assigned Sabaton song came on next. The candle, “Dominum Maris Baltici” echoing meant only one thing.

“Lejonet Från Norden”. Ah, what a pick me up this song is. Right after this, it’s time for a major singalong in “En Livstid i Krig” before they FINALLY cave in, or we all cave in and they wrap up the entire set with “Swedish Pagans”. I guess it was simply time for it, what do you say?

And with that said, the show was over. Yet another great performance, even though the setlist to my personal liking was a bit basic with a few nice surprises – but I’ve just stopped expecting too much.

Once the area had calmed and cooled down, we headed back to our cabin, got a change of clothes, grabbed our Magic Decks and found ourselves in the Starlight Palace with a drink, and playing a few rounds of Magic before retreating for sleep. Tomorrow, Tallinn!

// Sara

Sabaton – The Great War

Posted in CDs, Music, Uncategorized with tags , on September 6, 2019 by Sara Hammerzmith

So here it is people. The long awaited, tenth studioalbum from Sabaton. I do realize my review is way overdue, but better late than never right?

So, on November 11th, exactly 100 years after World War I broke out, they started the songwriting process and no less, the subject of the album is selfexplanatory – World War I. The Great War, a war so grime that it was said to end all wars. Previously in the library, Sabaton hasn’t touched this subject all too much, making it very interesting, to say the least.

So lets move on to the album?

The album opens up with a lowkey kind of intro, with distant bombs and other mechanical songs before exploding in an epic chant which sets off the album with a melody line and arrangements which brings the thoughts back to “Stalingrad” off “Primo Victoria”, dealing with the subject of the future of warfare. And with that, you can say the mood for the album had been set. If it had only stayed that way.

Already in the next song the mood is picked up with “Seven Pillars of Widsom” which carries a lot of resemblance to “White Death” off “Coat of Arms”. The song is a nice addition though, and if we weren’t getting the mood up here, it sure will bring us up in the next song, as we continue on these anthem-like songs in “82nd All The Way” which, just like the previous one, carries a resemblance, but this one to “Shiroyama” off the last album. However, I really like this one.  An incredible anthem to pay tribute to Sgt. Alvin York and what he achieved during the war.

In the next moment, we are taking a step or three down from the anthem’s, and are instead greeted with an unsettling intro of gas before being launched into a marching rhythm with accessories setting a certain mood to it. As the verse starts, I’m delighted to hear that this is actually something relatively new for being Sabaton. And I really like what I hear.

However, this break didn’t stay long until the album headed for another anthem, that is walking in some more traces of times passed. “Devil Dogs”, about the US Marines gives us an extremely powerful and cheerful anthem, bringing the thoughts slightly back to “Smoking Snakes”, but still enjoyable.

And then.. it arrives. The eerie, circus and carnival-like intro which its funny melody, giving you a funny feeling inside before setting off in a hysteric song that chugs on and on, still with the eerie organ in the background – making this song one of the top of the album. While still nodding back, still something new – like “Blood of Bannockburn” was on the preeceeder. While it may not be the most technical or difficult, this is also the guitarsolo I enjoy the most. This song as a whole – is just so god damn great.

Speaking of great, the great anthem of this album is just around the corner. The Titletrack is, not to my surprise, is a large and epic anthem, just like on many of the albums before this – and this has very quickly made its way to my personal favorite. With the quiet first verse, epic and bombastic choruses, the aggressive second verse and almost hopeful bridge, this song is the shit. And the lyrics, talking about the lyrics. This is some of the best lyrics I’ve seen from the band. While the lyrics of “Red Baron” has its charms and twists, it doesn’t come near this soldier perspective song dealing with the duality of feelings about the conflict as a whole. Yes. YES.

Two filler songs come after this – and I do want to give “A Ghost In the Trenches” A little heads up for that ending – that was real good.

Upon my first hearing of this album I hadn’t done a song count, so when this low, slow musical intro started, I assumed in my head that this was “In Flanders Fields”, and I started to slowly drift of to the serene tunes… as the song then went completely bonkers. “The End of the War to End All Wars”, starts off nicely and then launches into attack mode. I guess a bit like war. The song itself talks about the war that was supposed to be the end of all wars, and this song is an emotional rollercoaster. The verses are uneasy and hysteric, and the choruses are beautiful, epic and heartbreaking.

“In Flanders Fields” is the perfect ending to this album, mesmerizing arrangement and I’ve found myself putting this on repeat. Is there some hypnosis in this? Who knows.

So.. That’s a walkthrough. What are my feelings about the album then?

In general I think this is a pretty good album. While it may contain a little too many nod-backs that I can’t completely ignore, the gems of the album – “Red Baron” for instance – makes completely up for it. Overall, it’s a slick production that holds water, no matter what.

Favorite song: “The Great War”, followed tight by “Red Baron”. But please ask me again in six months.
Least Favorite: “Fields of Verdun”
Dance-friendliness:  4/11
Headbang-friendliness:  8/ 11
Crowd-friendliness: 7/11

// Sara

Unboxing – Sabaton: The Great Box

Posted in CDs, Uncategorized with tags , , on September 4, 2019 by Sara Hammerzmith

At last it arrived! Pre ordered some time in March or April, and delayed for a month and a half for whatever excuse they gave, it’s here at last. I am a bit unhappy with the delay – when the Tank from the Tank Edition was late, Nuclear Blast DID in fact ship out the rest of the content before it was done, and I feel they could have done that here as well. I do not understand nor know the obessession they have with always keeping everything until the last missing item is there, causing a huge dissatisfaction amongst their clients. We can only know, huh? They say production was late, but why didn’t they start already before they put it up for sale?

So on to the box. The box is a lot smaller than the prototype insisted originally – Originally it looked more like the History Version CD, and although we know that wasn’t the final box on the image, it still.. Is a little weird, don’t you think? That it differs that much. The box on the image was a full big box, and we got a pizza box size item.

I will however gice them cred for the details. I liked the fact that the recipients country is stamped on the box, as well as the metal hooks holding it together.

And when you open it, it looks like this

So, lets move onto the contents?

All in all, this is the content of the box, and my box more specifically. Three vinyls – regular vinyl, History Edition with a lot of blabber between every song and an instrumental “soundtrack” edition.

Earbook containing the same things as mentioned above, but on CD. With large artwork!

Five different photographs of the members of the band, not signed, but they look cool.

The poem “In Flanders Fields” together with a poppy+ Sabaton Logo pin. The Poppies are a memorial symbol for the people who lost their lives in the World War I.

And last but not least, one of the propaganda posters. Sabaton has since this tour started to spit out propaganda flyers about every song on their shows – and here we randomly get a poster depicting one of the flyers. My poster represent the song “The End of the War to End All Wars”

I must admit – something that makes me really unhappy with these posters is the need to slap the Sabaton + The Great War logo onto them. I have looked up what the others look like, and they all would really look so much better without the logo slapped everywhere, and just the quote.

So.. What can I say. I’m all in all pretty happy. At the end of the day, I knew, all of us, knew what we were getting. I guess I personally perhaps wish we could have gotten all the posters. Because why not?

As a bonus, I’ll throw in the propaganda flyers – so you can see what they all look like. Although, I suspect this is a misprint since the poppy has the quote from The Great War, and the Great War has the Flanders Fields quote.

These however, you collect during the gigs!

So, that was my few coins about that. In a few days, my review of the album shall be up as well.

// Sara