Varna Mega Rock 2018 – Nightwish, Apocalyptica, Glenn Hughes, Kamelot

For two days (18-19 August), Varna Mega Rock attracted thousands and thousands of people with an unbeatable line-up of Kamelot, Glenn Hughes, Apocalyptica, and the big headliners, Nightwish. The festival is a very special one, so close to the beach, which was enjoyed by fans and bands alike. The weather was good, with a nice breeze blowing.

The first night was very exciting, starting with local acts Krossfire (who brought Romanian singer Aura on stage for a special song) and Kikimora. Then it was time for Kamelot, who absolutely killed it. They didn’t have to go so hard, and yet they did that!! They made sure the public was not standing still for a single moment. There were times I thought they were over-doing it with the Hey! Hey!, but they gave it their all and got the same from the public. Their setlist was as inspired as always, mixing the old classics with songs off their new album. Very special mention for “Here’s to the fall”, a very emotional ballad where the public joins in with their cell phone lights.

Many people were left wondering how Kamelot was not headlining the day. But they soon got the answer when Glenn Hughes got on stage. Best known for his bass and vocal work with Deep Purple, he is a legend of music and it felt like an honor to be able to see him. In a very purple hippie outfit, he impressed us all with his voice and moves, with energy, with dedication. Unlike Kamelot, he did not have to try to rile up the crowd. You just knew he came to do his thing and his many years in the music were showing, having the public eat out of his hand. He was humble and friendly in a way that made you forget just how big he was. He kept saying that it wasn’t the public who came to see him, but him who came to see the public. Of course, Smoke on The Water was the highlight of the performance.

All in all, a very strong day, great music, impeccable organisation. The latter was only true, however, for the first day. On the second day the gates were supposed to open at 4:30 and at almost 6, the stage wasn’t set up yet. The Nightwish screens and pyro were still being set up. I was allowed in the venue and got to see what was happening, but unfortunately, the hundreds and hundreds of people waiting had no idea why they were left outside for two further hours. Delays are bound to happen in the music business (not that I understand how the truck didn’t get there a good two days after their previous concert, which was 4 hours away). However, the way organizers deal with it is problem. I feel like they could have done a better job communicating with the people, both online and offline. Moreover, it would have been nice to distribute some water to the people waiting for hours outside the gates, ready to run and wait some more hours in the front of the stage.

Because of this huge delay, the first 2 bands had to be cancelled. I felt sorry for them, because they were there, dressed, prepared, ready to hit the stage, and they couldn’t. They had made plans and relied on the idea that they would share the stage with Apocalyptica and the mighty Nightwish.

However, the day started with Apocalyptica, who blew my mind. I have no idea how I hadn’t seen them before. Absolutely incredible and slightly insane show of energy for cello players. This time they were playing Metallica by Four Cellos, a fully instrumental show, but one where the public came in to fill the lyrics of the most famous Metallica songs. Huge show by them, definitely worth seeing again.

Finally, the Nightwish intro! We are doing this! What a show that was! Celebrating 20 years of activity, Nightwish are coming with Decades, a compilation album showcasing their most essential songs. While Greatest Show on Earth or Ghost Love Score were sure to be in the setlist, I loved hearing Dead Boy’s Poem, Come Cover Me, Elvenpath. Their show was a masterpiece of vocal and instrumental prowess, energy, joy, great music, and, of course, FIRE! I appreciated that the stage was high and far enough for the first row not to feel extra scared of being burned alive, even though giant flames were going on in front of them, giving off tremendous heat.

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Other highlights of the show were I Want My Tears Back – a song where the public is always invited to dance and jump – or Slaying the Dreamer, which is just pure insanity. Song after song, we were show why they are the greatest. Compared to the previous Nightwish concert, I felt the Varna crowd a bit … quiet, especially when the band “left the stage” before the encore and they were mostly followed by silence. But with Ghost Love Score as an encore, the public revived to scream and dance and marvel at how amazing Floor’s vocals are.

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All in all, I am very happy with the fest, but it is also so because I did not wait for hours in the sun. They had a decent selection of food and drinks and the queues were not bad. The line-up was absolutely incredible, so I am sure that all fans will only remember the great feelings, that they got to see Kamelot, Glenn Hughes, Apocalyptica and NIGHTWISH!

Let me know when the next edition of Varna Mega Rock is, because I am coming!


Kamelot brought their Shadow Theory to Bucharest

Kamelot! Kamelot! Kamelot! – Can you tell it was a great show already? August 16th, Quantic Open Air, Kamelot brought their latest album, The Shadow Theory, to Romania.  Photo Gallery here

The day started with Crossing Eternity with a short set, but that definitely got them many new fans. The singer said “Bună seara” and I was so impressed by his Romanian only to have him speaking Romanian afterwards because … he is Romanian. A Romanian – Swedish- German band, they worked amazing together. They only have one album out, but it’s worth checking out. Good energy on stage, worked the crowd, got them to cheer. They didn’t have an easy task, but they delivered. Hopefully we’ll get to see them many more times in Romania.

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Before Kamelot we were kind of worried because there weren’t that many people and the Golden Circle space was a bit too large, and by that I mean it was 70% empty. Luckily, by the time Kamelot came on stage, more people had joined and people got up from the tables so it didn’t look suspiciously empty.

I was happy to see just how many people came with Kamelot T-shirts. Glad to see so many fans. Kamelot are a band with such a long and complex history, it’s hard to define them exactly. I have friends who are huge fans of Kamelot because it was what they were listening to in high school. I have friends who have only come aboard the Kam train after the last album(s). That is, though, what makes the band so special. They know who their fans are and they do an amazing job of mixing the old with the new. After all, they have gone forward and forward for years (since 1991), put out 12 albums, and yet they are fresher and more exciting than ever.

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The show started with a single from the new album, Phantom Divine (Shadow Empire). They gave us more new songs (Ravenlight, Amnesiac) and some throwbacks that just cannot be left out of their setlist (Rule The World, The Great Pandemonium, When The Lights are Down, Karma). I personally think they have even better songs on The Shadow Theory that they are not playing, but this is just me being picky and wanting to hear them live.

For this show, Kamelot were joined by Lauren Hart of Once Human, who came in and out to feature on different songs. She has such an incredible and versatile voice, going from clean vocals to growl. When she gets the chance to shine, she fills the stage.

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Song after song, the crowd was going wild. A very special moment was during Here’s To The Fall, a very emotional ballad Tommy dedicated to his late grandfather. The song is so beautiful and showcases more of what he can do vocally, and the crowd had a part in it raising up their lights.

Towards the end, we got to hear Forever, one of my favourites. It is always a great moment in the setlist because the band stops the song for the crowd to chant different versions of oooOOOOoooO with them. Tommy Karevik on stage is electric and has a magnetism few people can ever dream to achieve. He can command a crowd with just a look. He told us what to do and we did it. Definitely not as well as he did it, but we cannot all be world-class singers.

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The band had such a great energy. When talking to other fans, Thomas was referred to as “the one making atmosphere on stage” and everyone loved seeing Sean and his signature braids being extra energetic. Both Thomas and Tommy were constantly coming off stage to be closer to the fans, raising thunderous roars from the crow. Oliver was, as always, the master of the keyboards (because he’s worth it). Any band that has a keyboard solo wins my heart forever. Last but not least, a very special shout-out to Alex Landenburg, who stepped behind the drums while Johan is recovering and is doing an amazing job.

All in all, a great show! I did lose my voice at the end of it, so you know I screamed. It wasn’t just me! The crowd, though not huge, was very loud and very supportive. We all cannot wait to do this all again!

Află cine cântă în deschiderea concertului Kamelot de la București

Pentru că orice concert bun merită deschis de o trupă pe măsură, iată că anunțăm și formația care va cânta alături de KAMELOT în cadrul concertului de la Quantic (open air), din data de 16 august 2018, și anume grupul româno-suedez CROSSING ETERNITY.
Event: Kamelot – lansare album „The Shadow Theory”/ Quantic (Open Air)

Biletele pot fi achiziționate online pe, primele categorii de prețuri fiind:
– 120 lei (100 bilete) – Golden Circle / Zonă în fața scenei
– 79 lei (100 bilete) – Pre-sale 1 / Normal Circle

– ticketele „meet & greet” vor fi disponibile in scurt timp, iar acestea trebuie sa fie insotite de un bilet de concert valid.

CROSSING ETERNITY s-a născut din pasiune și din dorința de a face pași înainte, din prietenia fără granițe pe care arta ne poate ajuta să o realizăm, într-un moment în care acest lucru trebuia să se întâmple. Grupul româno-suedez și-a început activitatea în 2017 cu intenția de a crea un repertoriu original, solid, înregistrând primul album, „The Rising World”, cu un sound organic, cu o estetică definită, printr-o producție care a evitat cosmetizarea exagerată.

Manu Savu (ex Iris, Voltaj 88, Krypton) și-a ocupat propriul studio cu idei și resurse pentru un grup nou, care să aibă ceva de spus pe scena europeană. Odată pornit la drum, proiectul și-a adăugat tot ce avea nevoie pentru a ieși în lume proaspăt, vibrant și dornic de a se arăta iubitorilor de autentic.

Dacă trupa este nouă, membrii formației sunt muzicieni profesioniști cu o experiență de 25-30 de ani, perioadă ce le-a conferit oportunitatea de a aborda genuri – subgenuri de rock/metal/progresiv, dar si fussion, jazz, blues, experiență atât de studio, cât mai ales de concert, în special la nivel național.

De-a lungul carierei lor membrii trupei au avut ocazia să colaboreze sau să cânte ca „open act” în România, dar nu numai, pentru formații ca Ten Years After, Uriah Heep, Scorpions, Larry Coryell, Blood, Sweat & Tears etc.

Obiectivul principal al noului grup este ca de această dată să-și creeze cât mai multe oportunități de a cânta în toată lumea și de a face muzica sa cât mai cunoscută și apreciată în cât mai multe țări.

Crossing Eternity a lansat zilele trecute și un nou videoclip, pe care vă invităm să îl vizualizați mai jos. Dea semenea, trupa va lansa în data de 15 iunie albumul de debut intitulat „The Rising World” via Rockshots Records.

Berti Barbera (vocal/percussion intruments)
Manu Savu (Guitar)
Uffe Tilman (Drums)
Johann Hentz (Bass)