at The Rave - April 7th 2005 - Milwaukee (Wisconsin - USA)


live review  by Matthew "Newbreed99" Haumschild ____



           An absolutely brilliant line-up! One Danish band and three Swedish bands, what else could an American metal fanatic ask for? Well, besides a nice Italian black metal band hehe. Well, it was worth the 5 hour trip there for it! I must explain first the Rave is composed of four parts. A huge ballroom that can hold up to 7,000 people, “The Eagles Club” where it can hold up to 1000 people, The Rave Club which can hold up or around 6-900 people, and the Rave bar…no more than 100 people. I’ve been to all parts of this place with the exception of the Rave Club. This part was located on the lowest level and was supposedly haunted. Oh well, at first there was hardly anyone there. No more than 30 people, I was getting a bit worried but by the time Mnemic took the stage there was around 200 people.



           I have only heard of a few songs by them, nothing really to write home (or this website) about. Their live show wasn’t bad at all. They were working the stage like professionals who actually do give a damn. Walked around the stage, shouted at the crowd. They played very nicely! They had a really nice stage presence, now if the crowd was actually awake, no fault to the band, it would have made a funner show. Their music deserves more attention then it has been getting. Everyone was always telling me that his band sounds like Fear Factory. Being the foremost expert in the mid-west on Fear Factory I’ll reserve than judgment for myself. In my opinion, these guys didn’t really sound like them at all. Maybe the singing, but that’s it. This band has more of a melodic death-metal sound to them with a hint of modern rock to them. Now, if the singer just shaves the rest of his head…Mnemic is a band that’s worth a second look. Pick up a demo, get some mp3’s, you be the judge, I want to hear more.



Live at the No Mercy 2004

            The first time I saw Hypocrisy was 8 or 9 months ago in Minneapolis and they tore the place up! This time, it just seemed as if Peter (singer) wasn’t even trying. The band just hopped on stage, jammed, said some words, and left. Not much for showmanship unlike the first time I saw this band. To be honest though, I am only really familiar with their “Arrival” album and wasn’t as well versed in the music as I was with the other two remaining bands. The set-list was the problem in my opinion; it kept going from fast to slow, fast to slow. It got a bit tedious after awhile but the crowd seemed to like them. The songs I did know they played very well! Again, worth checking out again, maybe it was just a bad night for Peter. Their sound was on though. The drums sounded absolutely perfect, everyone anywhere could here the ringing of the ride cymbal, and every solo was felt. The vocals sounded amazing, everything was articulated quite well. The music was executed great, just the presence wasn’t there.


Hypocrisy setlist
fire in the sky
turn the page


            Dark Tranquillity

Live inUK at Electric Ballroom - London (photos)
Interview with Mikael Stanne
Exposures-  in Retrospect and Denial
Interview with Niklas Sundin
Damage Done
Dark Tranquillity live at  A Day at the Border 2003

            I am always a little worried about this band. This is the third time I have seen this band and this is the second time I have watched these guys in Milwaukee and I have seen mixed reactions both times. Personally, I love Dark Tranquillity and I always have something good to say about them. Although I did not get a set list, I can say they played a lot of songs off of “Character”. Some of the other songs they played were mostly off of “Damage Done”. However, the song that woke the crowd up was “Wonders at your feet.

That was the second or third track they played. Out of the four bands that night, DT had the best opening: the band was jamming then Stanne (singer) jumps on stage and commands the crowd! The execution was brilliant. Warning though, from personal experience I have seen hundreds of shows and out of all of the Dark Tranquillity puts on the loudest damn concert out of them all, bring ear plugs! Again, brilliant engineering work by the FOH sound man. Every drum was clear as a bell, the solos screamed in harmony, everyone could feel and hear the bass. The vocals…could have been better. I think the volume was too high on them because the sound quality seemed more distorted than it should have been. I also noticed the in between songs when Stanne would sing, he was losing his voice! Crazy! The keyboards never sounded better and he was actually playing them and not pressing play on a sequencer like some other bands. Go see this band! That’s all I am going to say.



Stabbing the Drama
Figure number Five

            I had no idea what to expect and to be honest I had no idea they were headlining. This is the first time they played a set longer than 40 minutes and they played very well! Soilwork played for 90 minutes and their set list consisted of songs from ALL of their cd’s. There are bands out there that’ll maybe play songs off their last two albums, Soilwork is not one of them. Soilwork brought their own lights and backdrops I was pleasantly surprised at this. Soilwork has never headlined in the US so I had no idea what to expect. These guys are ready! I wanted to hear more when they stopped playing. In my opinion they didn’t play long enough! Their set list was so varied and well mixed…just brings a nice smile to my face. Soilwork played songs like “Million Flame,” “Needlefest,” “Flameout,” “As We Speak,” “Figure Number Five,” and countless others. The crowd went nuts as they were playing, out of all the bands Soilwork had the best stage presence. Strid talked to the crowd in-between almost all the songs. There were some problems though. The transition between songs sometimes didn’t work at all, for example, they played a slower song, I can’t remember which one, and they transitioned into “Rejection Role” and I couldn’t tell what the song was until halfway through it. It just wasn’t clear enough. Another problem was with the vocals: When Strid would sing melodic, it sounded wonderful but when he screamed and growled, I couldn’t understand a word he was singing. It was so muffled! Everyone else sounded great though, the best part besides Strids melodic vocals, where the keyboards. I could hear everything they were doing. I highly recommend seeing this band live. These guys are going to be bigger than In Flames and Pantera someday and it won’t be too far off from now. 


Matthew Haumschild


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