Here’s a live review of Firewind’s Belfast debut that ran in Metal Hammer last issue.
THE LIMELIGHT 2, BELFAST
Tonight, Greek metal quintet Firewind pop their Belfast cherry in front of a decent sized crowd filled with long-time followers and those eager to see Ozzy guitarist Gus G perform with his “other band” up close and personal. Opening with ace new single Wall Of Sound from seventh album Few Against Many, the band really get going on the decidedly Dio-esque Head Up High which features more than a few melodies indebted to the late, great legend and even sees singer Apollo Papathanasio playfully peep out from behind the pillars onstage to flash his horns. The blood-thirsty Destination Forever keeps proceedings firing on all cylinders thanks to some killer double kick drumming from Johan Nunez and seriously fast shredding courtesy of Gus (who has his own personal fan on stage to ensure his locks fly in the breeze) and the epic Losing My Mind sounds monstrous live, but soon afterwards, Firewind start to run out of puff. Instrumental The Fire And The Fury and I Am The Anger in particular suffer from a lack of original ideas and by the time they reach the tellingly titled final song Falling To Pieces the band are almost invisible thanks to the excessive dry ice and in some ways it feels apt as the crowd have seen enough. While far from a disaster, tonight’s gig lacked that spark of greatness during the second half and overall it was a flawed, occasionally fun affair.