We left my grandpa's house around 3:30. The trip to Cleveland was a depressing 3.5 hour drive, but my grandfather was gracious enough to provide a ride. I had been waiting for three months for this show, and no schoolwork, butt cramps, or sinus infections were going to stop me. On the way there, time was passed quite easily with my 'Catch 'em all' Pokemon Red quest.
We got to Peabody's just as doors were openning (7 pm.) I have to say, though it is inconveniently far, and I have only been there once, that venue is one of my favorites. It is large enough for the band to move around a little, but is still has the vibe of a basement show. The crowd is right up against the stage, and the bands all interacted with the crowd. No matter where you stood, you had a clear view of the stage and the bands. Plus, Cokes were only 2 bucks.
Luckily, the local openner was finished with their short set. Before Swallow the Sun even hit the stage, I saw many many Scandinavian looking guys that I just knew had to be in one of the bands. I feel like a douchebag because I didnt talk to any of them, even after they played and were chatting at the bar.
Swallow the Sun hit the stage first. They were second on my list of favorites that night, just behind Insomnium. I had only heard their album Hope, and the song Descending Winters before I saw them, but I was still very anxious to see them live. From what I seen of the sets before last night, I was sure they were going to play Don't Fall Asleep, but many of the posters on ultimatemetal reported that they DID NOT play These Hours of Despair. I was pretty pissed about that, but still optimistic. I was justly rewarded. The sound was absolutely gorgeous, and they band translated very well live. The fill-in drummer (from Wintersun) did very well also. Their set was as follows
Don't Fall Asleep (Horror Part 2)
Too Cold For Tears
These Hours of Despair
Swallow (Horror Part 1)
As soon as they left the stage, I knew that night was going to be great. I sat anxiously awaiting my favorite band on the bill: Insomnium. These Finnish death metallers caught my ear on Headbanger's Ball, oddly enough. Once I heard Mortal Share, I was hooked. They are one of the only bands that I own the entire catalogue of (only 3 albums
.) They took the stage after a quick set change. The keyboard intro(played by the StS keyboardist) of the Gale rang out, and the crowd (at myself) went wild. They also translated very well live. I sang along to most of the songs, one of about 6 or 7 people in the crowd who did so. The singer pointed at me and grinned (OMG!) I already had their setlist off of their forum, but I was still hoping for The Elder. Right before they were supposed to play Daughter of the Moon, the singer said "Now heres one from our first album." I yelled "THE ELDER!", fully knowingly it wasnt going to be. And yah know what? THEY PLAYED THE MOTHERFUCKING ELDER! [/fanboy] Their set was as follows.
Drawn to Black
The Day It All Came Down
Devoid of Caring
After Insomnium left the stage, I pretty much knew the rest of the night wasnt going to be able to match first half. I still waited patiently for Scar Symmetry though. My brother had both of their albums, and I have to say I didn't hate them, per se. Some of their songs were catchy, but others seemed to be rehashed versions of their other songs. They hit the stage, and the first thing I thought was that the singers growls were as deep as they were on the CDs, and he sounded alot like Randy Blythe. His singer voice was impressive, but nothing too memorable. Alot of moshing during their set. You could tell the singer (who I thought looked and acted like a douche) really liked it when the crowd moshed, but was getting pissed when no one was singing along. Oh well. We met this kid in the pit that was the ultimate Scar Symmetry tool. He showed up late to the show, just in time to see them, and then had to be home by 11 for school the next day. Throughout their set he sang EVERY SINGLE WORD, and kept grabbing himself and prancing. It was weird.
Slaves to the Subliminal
Path of Least Resistance
Calculate the Apocalypse
When they were done, I went back to the bar and ordered a Phil Collins on the rocks. I didnt really know what to expect from the Katatonia set, and I really didnt walk away in awe. I really would have enjoyed an all 'old shit' set mixed with a few of their songs off Great Cold Distance. Aside from Consternation, Ghost of the Sun, My Twin, Soils Song, July and Murder, I wasnt familar with any of their songs. And from what I heard, I dont really have the urge to buy-out their catalogue. The songs I did know were played okay, but their lacked the depth/feel of the studio versions. They were good, dont get me wrong, but the songs I didnt know were very appealing. The musicianship was there, I don't know why it didnt click.
Ghost of the Sun
Don't Tell a Soul
The Future of Speech
BRING BACK AKERFELDT!
Overall, a good show. I saw my two favorite Finnish bands, and grabbed two shirts. Cant say I have any complaints. Now I sit here, half deaf, because the music assaulted the outside of my ear drum, and the sinus infection is collecting behind it. HEAVY METAL!