Live reportage



20 years anniversary at Z7 in Pratteln














photos and review by dalia "gryphon_spirit" di giacomo ___            


           German Unrest was founded 1988 in Bremen. 1988-2008: Unrest celebrate this year their 20th anniversary with a series of concerts and with a gift to the fans: the free download of their new live album, "Back To Rock Live", (13 songs + cover art) recorded 2007 in Switzerland at the "Back To Rock Festival". And it is in Switzerland, at Z7 in Pratteln, that Unrest celebrated tonight the last of the announced Anniversary shows, one of them took place just yesterday in Bochum. I was very excited to attend Unrest again, after the unforgettable concert at the Z7 Metal Dayz in 2006.  Unrest is sincerely one of the very few bands that make me appreciate Heavy/Power Metal and melodic Hard Rock. Unrest, in particular, represent to me the best side of classic Heavy Metal. Heavy Metal like it should be: strong, determined, but not arrogant, catchy but not too easy or retro, straight to the point and not histrionic, and, above all, near to the wishes and tastes of extreme metallers. I can anticipate that this concert has kept all promises: Unrest have delivered today a first-class show, really adequate to a big celebration: stage acting of finest, extended setlist, interaction with the audience, very good sound quality. Easy to be deduced: the audience got very, very satisfied, the 6 Italian fans from Asti presumably too. The only "imperfection" of the evening was the not big affluence of the mentioned audience, not few but also not too many (probably 200 persons) especially if compared with the more crowded gigs in Germany. However the people who have attended were totally supportive, truly interested in the band; this way Unrest didn't miss another warm welcome on Hel(l)vetic ground. Before i outline more details about the show and about how much the fans enjoyed it, i would gladly speak about the 2 supporters: Zyanide and Emerald, who punctually hit the stage after the  flawless preparation, typical of Z7.





            Founded in 2005, Zyanide is an emerging Swiss band, really a young band that plays Thrash with some epic timbre, thanks to the use of keys. But don't panic!: uptempo's and percussive shredding rhythmic are included as default, together with harmonic slowdown's. Some small faults don't spoil at all the performance, on the contrary, the live is underlined with its best effect: genuinity. Zyanide work well together, with good coordination. Some loops are involving, and the presence of keys and some anthemic passages makes this thrash original, agreeable to the listeners of classic Heavy, therefore Zyanide becomes more and more interesting, fitting the atmosphere of this evening , dedicated to such veteran and titanic headliners. While greeting Unrest, the audience and the Z7, Zyanide defines itself as newcomer. This gives to me the opportunity to bring into focus what actually i have before my eyes: a generational heritage. In the audience i see not only Rockers and extreme Metallers, even more interesting is the variety in age: young and older find convergence and equally begin to have fun. The best feature of Zyanide is the dynamic songwriting. The more the concert goes on, the more fast aggressive riffs surface from melodic surfaces, the more varied influence find place in a coherent style. Even a drop of folk metal has been launched...and then solos, dry drums, classic thrash rhythm and melody influenced by Metallica and Testament, and then more modern and original ingredients. Vocals were always perfectly hearable, always able to survive the instruments. The audience remains actually still quiet and a bit far from the stage, but , as many talented young openers, Zyanide too have done their best "to open the dance". I was positively impressed, keep an eye on Zyanide, they can become big in future. A metal camp in Slovenia (2008) has been already accomplished ....





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            Swiss Emerald is quite known and respected. Now we walk on a field which is clearly more epic oriented. The experience of the band is evident, and although Emerald are often labeled as playing Power, what hits me is the pushing rock'n roll base. I read that  this band identify itself as pure Heavy Metal made in Switzerland. Well, labelling  has never been and will never be my cup of blood, however i risk to say that from the stage i feel a soft spot for Melodic Epic Power, nonetheless the exaltation of the rhythmics and the good melodic logic patterns make inspirations from Warlord hearable. Vocals are very strong, high -pitched oriented but still tolerable to me. The audience instead enjoys Emerald more than me, so the evening definitely takes off. Keys are more in foreground than those from Zyanide and appear more monumental, Among the songs, chosen throughout their career, Revenge and Hard to be true unleash a great appreciation. Very anthemic, Emerald  greet the "Steel side" of metal, with its balladesque romantic moments too. Impressive voice, good technique and solidity. Well done.








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Back to the Roots
Unrest live in Pratteln (CH) - Metal Dayz 2006







            Now Unrest! Acclaimed, although the atmosphere is familiar, unstudied, easy going. The wolves from Bremen are about to hit the stage around 22:00. They come off from the usual darkness but from that moment on the concert will have a perfect light and a vivid clarity. Unrest is no band that hides behind tons of smoke. Unrest play hard from the beginning till the end of the gig without having a single moment of weakness. Always at the top, perfused with enthusiasm (oh this magic word!) and energy, they put on the stage all the experience of 20 years of career but they appear so young, convicted, even vehement. Again i receive pleasure from the well structured attractive hooklines with incisive attitude. Unrest is supported by an excellent live sound engineering, but the gig must be done in first person, and Unrest fulfill the expectations. The setlist is opened by the track Go to Hell. Then tracks like Down on my Knees, Lost and I hate simply make my and everyone's evening. The song I hate gets a presentation apart because frontman Sönke Lau underlines that, although this song might have been composed much time ago, even before many in the audience were born, the content is unfortunately still topical today: the racism. It follows Cold Steel Whisper, with Claus' backing vocals.  The song Bang your Head is booked by the fans, but Unrest answer with Breaking the Chains, with great Claus solo. Fans can enjoy also Master of Disguise, Sadness and Darkness and finally the trademark anthem of the band, the cadenced and overwhelming Bang your Head, followed by Never Surrender and Don't X the line. Needless to say, that it's since long that the audience, dances, jumps, sings along, while the first row is headbanging like hell. Unrest even allow a participation of fans on the stage. I am very happy to realize that the  fan who has shortly sung on the stage with Sönke is the frontman of the young Death Metal band Total Annihilation (that recently played with GurD and Darkmoon in Aarau). When i told that Unrest appeal also listeners of extreme metal, i was right. 


Emerald's singer will also reach the band on the stage. 

The great performance comes not only from the 3 founder members of the Unrest : Sönke, Claus and drummer Guido, but also from the very participating Andre and the solid Marco. The interaction with the fans is very active without being excessive, Sönke simply knows well how  to handle with the audience in a sincere, uncomplicated way. Although everyone has fun and the party grows, the band is always respected and  maintains the attention focused on the music for almost 2 hours. Among very hard riffs and melodic ballades, we have celebrated a Heavy Metal (only occasionally Power-tainted) of finest: United we stand.








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review by dalia di giacomo  - photos © by dalia di giacomo

Written permission  is needed for the public use of these photos



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