Dragonforce Takes Worcester by Storm – April 2, 2022
Power metal icons DragonForce took over the Palladium in Worcester on Saturday night. Fans lined up patiently around the block, excited to see the London-based band. Some had been waiting for years, and the show would certainly exceed all expectations.
The evening would start off strong with local band Seven Spires. Formed in Boston, the band brought their own brand of symphonic metal, with vocalist Adrienne Cowan’s guttural, emotional vocals. With tracks such as “Succumb” and “Gods of Debauchery”, Seven Spires captivated the crowd from the start. Firewind’s Herbie Langhans also joined the band on stage for a powerful rendition of “Lightbringer”.
Visions of Atlantis
It was now time for Austria’s Visions of Atlantis. The stage felt like a foggy evening at sea, with the band in elegant buccaneer attire. The theme supports their upcoming album, Pirates. The singing duo of Clementine Delauney and Michele Guaitoli was breathtaking against the heavy, symphonic sounds. Taking the audience on a journey with tracks like “Heroes Of The Dawn” and the recently released “ Legion Of The Seas”, the band’s energy was mesmerizing.
Next up would be Greek power metal band Firewind. With yet another shift in energy, the scene was now heavier and more aggressive. With Herbie Langhans’ epic vocals, Firewind presented a dynamic set, with powerful tunes such as “Welcome to the Empire”, “Ode to Leonidas” and “Rising Fire”. The band’s dominance was clear all the way until the end, when a heavy cover of Michael Sembello’s “Maniac” drove the audience crazy and triggered a sea of crowd surfers.
The excitement was palpable when it was time for DragonForce to take the stage. In an interesting turn, the soundcheck included a brief snippet of Tool’s “Schism”, as the dragon and two giant arcade machines were unveiled.
After Yanni’s “Point of Origin” signaled the start of the show, singer Marc Hudson would enter the stage with the first lines of “Highway to Oblivion”, with lead guitarists Herman Li and Sam Totman taking their spots on top of the arcades. With bursts of confetti and smoke, the band kicked off an hour and a half of sheer speed. “Fury Of The Storm” would soon follow, with both guitarists taking the center spot, showing off their blindingly fast musical prowess.
The videogame theme is a strong presence all across the board. A brief collection of classic Sega commercials was closely followed by Hudson on guitar with tributes to the Castlevania and Final Fantasy franchises. The show was also livestreamed on online gaming platform Twitch.
The band featured several tracks from their most recent release Extreme Power Metal, such as “Heart Demolition” and “Remembrance Day”. The obvious closing tune was the well known “Through The Fire and Flames”, with special guest Mia Asano on the electric violin joining the band for the introduction of the song.
As a fan outside would say, DragonForce is the band everybody knows, without realizing. Introduced to many as the anxiety-inducing ending song on Guitar Hero 3, fans have continued to show their devotion beyond it over the years.