Edguy – Manchester Club Academy - 17th March, 2010

Support: White Wizzard, With One Last Breath.

Openers With One Last Breath, completely misjudge their audience. With a horrific, generic sound they deliver a half-arsed set with far too many breakdowns and clichés to even be funny.

Thankfully they get off quickly and the mighty White Wizzard take to the stage. Hailing from California these classic metal masters are at the forefront of the genre’s resurgence. Pioneering their own take on the origins of metal they deliver an energetic set full of masterful solos, mesmerising bass and pounding drums. The only thing preventing them from truly stealing the show was their singer, Wyatt ‘The Screaming Demon’ having lost his voice. Yet still he managed to soldier on, powering the band through a set which sees the merch stall packed with people clamouring to buy their new album. The band even mingling with the audience as the mighty Edguy take to the stage.

After a career spanning 18 years it’s odd to see a band with such a reputation playing to 300 people in a basement. Yet as they run on stage the atmosphere soars to give the impression of a stadium crowd. Edguy power through a set filled with classics, songs from the album and even a brief cover of Iron Maiden’s ‘The Trooper’. The venue choice becomes clear as front-man and vocalist Tobias Sammet explains that they were ‘warned against touring the UK at the moment’ as ‘metal bands struggle to get crowds’. This causes the crowd to almost riot, yet he saves the day by saying ‘We’d rather play to you 300 people than a stadium that don’t appreciate metal. You are the hardcore’, a statement he says with clear emotion and feeling causing the very foundations of the building to shudder from the crowd’s scream. After playing a full 1 hour 45 set Edguy finally leave the stage, but only after making sure they shake everyone in the entire building by the hand. Tobias’ statement ‘We’re here to build this up’ clearly has the hearts and votes of this crowd, proving not only is metal alive in the UK, but our voice will be heard.

Make sure to catch them at Bloodstock this August!