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Road Reports

Artist: Children Of Bodom
Venue: Irving Plaza (New York, NY)
Opener: Amon Amarth, Trivium
Date: 12/14/2005
Label: Spinefarm Records


If you have been paying attention to the shirts you see at Metal shows these days you will definitely notice a large amount of them seem to be for Children Of Bodom. No matter what show I am attending I seem to find the design for this band in the dozens and given the number of bands today this is something that stands out. If you were lucky enough to catch Dimmu Borgir or Iced Earth when they last toured in the States then you are well aware of how exciting this group is in the live sense. Tonight they would be supporting their latest effort “Are You Dead Yet?” which comes to us care of Spinefarm Records. Joining them for this sold-out tour would be Metal Blade’s own Viking Warriors Amon Amarth and Roadrunners latest rising stars Trivium. I made sure to get there for everyone this time by having the correct scheduling information and I was glad I did. It was truly a night for Metal from start to finish.

Amon Amarth hit the stage to a great response which I think even took them a little bit by surprise. It’s always great to see the starter bands go over well especially in a time where the audience is so fickle and sticks to what they like and not much else. Clearly these guys had the Viking spirit in them as they performed their set that featured mostly songs from the latest release “The Fate Of Norns”. It was energetic and intense and they appeared to be having as much fun delivering their brand of Metal as the audience who was listening. I would like to see them play a little longer next time and can attest that I enjoyed them in the live sense more so than I did on record. They sounded much better than I had expected and I think for many Metal heads they should be given a listen. After their set the members of the group wandered around the club and by the merchandise booth. Lead singer Johan Hegg was drinking his beer out of a horn and if that is not Viking than I am not sure what is.

Trivium came up next and this band is one of the Roadrunner Records biggest rising stars. There is a little bit of the Metal core growling in the vocals of Matt Heafy but the music they play shows that these guys respected and were educated by the ways of the Traditional Metal greats. Intense guitars and thunderous drumming make this a very powerful group. I admit that I don’t know many of their songs as I don’t own a copy of their latest release “Ascendancy” but according to the photographed set list they performed some killer tracks. Among the songs performed were “Drowned”, “Flies”, “Suffocating Sight” and many others in their almost hour long set. The band has recently added another guitarist and this fills the band out a little more if you ask me. Their music is solid and a little more creative than that of some of their peers. As a result I am finding myself enjoying them a little more each time I get to an appearance of theirs. This tour should surely help them on their rise to the top of the Metal mountain.

The main event was on and now was the time for Children Of Bodom to show everyone in the club the reason for their popularity and impact on Metal. This would be my third time seeing them, as I seem to average one appearance of theirs per album and I am always intrigued by the chaos that ensues when leader Alexi Laiho gets on stage. While the whole band is stellar as far as the level of technical ability on their instruments, Laiho is definitely the main attraction. He is seldom in one place for more than a few seconds and only stands still to scream his lungs out during the songs. He is also a kick ass guitarist and on the new album he played most of the leads. Needless to say the club was insane during their set and it was crowd surfer after crowd surfer making their way to were the pictures get taken. The bouncers and security certainly had their hands full that night and it was so electric in the place that you could almost feel the energy like a physical thing. It’s clear that the band also felt this as they pummeled the masses with their set. They would feature about 4-5 songs from the new album as we discovered while meeting with keyboard wizard Janne Warmen before the show and then focus on their older material. While the group does sound great on the record it is most clear without any doubt that this is a band that you have to see live. The concert stage in front of ardent fans is their place and it is in this setting that they rule. I mentioned that this was a sold out show earlier but I left out that this was sold out for weeks in advance. The venue fits about 1100-1300 for a show like this and seeing a line formed around the corner on the night of the show was just incredible. The forces of Metal were totally up to the task tonight and the more this happens for bands like Children Of Bodom then the better it is for their return to play at an even larger venue. I feel if the attention to them keeps growing that they will be revered as giants in the industry and that would be a good thing since the band surely deserves it.

Set List:
1.    Living Dead Beat
2.    In Your Face
3.    Are You Dead Yet?
4.    Hate Me
5.    We’re Not Gonna Fall
6.    Jaska drum solo
7.    Alexi and Janne guitar/keyboard duel
8.    Sixpounder
9.    Angels Don’t Kill
10.    Needled 24/7
11.    Chokehold
12.    Hate Me
13.    Bodom After Midnight/Bodom Beach Terror
14.    In Your Face
15.    Roope guitar solo
16.    Follow the Reaper
17.    Everytime I Die
18.    Silent Night Bodom Night
19.    Downfall
20.    Hate Crew Deathroll

Official Web site: www.CoBHC.org
Official Web site: www.AmonAmarth.com
Official Web site: www.Trivium.com


--Ken Pierce (copyright 2005) for PiercingMetal.com


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