New England Metalfest - Day Three - April 30, 2006, The Worcester Palladium, Worcester, MA
Metal Festival
Live Concert
Reviewed by Kayla

It’s no exaggeration to say that I had been looking forward to Sunday for over two months. I awoke with one thought on my mind: DragonForce. Unfortunately, Sunday was also destined to be the most aggravating day of the weekend for me. As my car was still suffering from a burnt-out headlight, Stephanie had agreed to give me a ride again. After waiting for her for over an (incredibly frustrating) hour, I received word that she was unable to go. I cursed briefly, then embarked on a quest to try and find some mode of transportation. Although no one I got ahold of could give me a ride, one of my more mechanically-inclined friends was able to assist me in changing my headlight bulb. It was a bitch, but it worked, and I was able to drive myself to Worcester.

Unfortunately, because of this, I missed Cellador and Goat Horn. I was quite saddened, but still looking forward to the rest of the day. I watched Light This City, a female-fronted metalcore band that's heavier on the metal, and discovered that for some reason, 'core screams sound better when done by female vocalists. The next highlight was Byzantine, who reminded me a bit of Pantera, and were fun to watch. Definitely sons of the South, and proud of it.

The frustrations of the day were not over, however, as around five p.m. I realized that my runny nose and itchy throat were not, in fact, due to allergies and dehydration, but were due to the fact I was rapidly falling ill. Fortunately, there was too much metal for me to be preoccupied with my cold. Into Eternity were next, and were one of the highlights of the day; heavy/thrashy power metal with a touch of distorted vocals as well as clean. They’re from Canada, which I find significant as the vocalist has a bit of the same sense of humor and stage manner as Devin Townsend. Needless to say, they were extremely entertaining to watch.

And then God said, "Let there be denim." And Wolf took the stage, and brought heavy metal from Sweden. And it rocked, and it was good.

The Bronx Casket Company had the slot before DragonForce; for those unfamiliar, it’s a project involving DD Verni (Overkill) and Jack Frost (Seven Witches), among others; soundwise they’re a poor man’s Black Label Society. I can almost certainly state that if it hadn’t involved people famous for such things as Overkill and Seven Witches, The Bronx Casket Company would not have had such a plum slot. Musically they’re nothing to write home about, and their performance relied more on strobe lights than real stage presence.

However, they paid for their hubris. I've never seen a band get heckled so hard at the Palladium. Every softer part of their songs saw the audience chanting for DragonForce. People walked away and sat down (I among them, though I also blame the fact I was sick). I felt bad for them, but I was also rather amused.

And then there was DragonForce.

Suddenly, everything that had happened to me that weekend, from getting whacked in the face to being sick at that moment, didn’t matter. These guys are absolutely inhuman. Herman Li had my jaw on the floor – I still can’t believe a human being can play that well that fast live. They all obviously love doing what they do, and take a lot of delight in showing off for the audience and getting the crowd involved. Vocalist ZP Theart especially – for the more memorable bits of such songs as Fury Of The Storm and Through The Fire And The Flames, he let the audience stretch their pipes, and at the end had the entire room raising their hands and howling. Cheesy? Hell, yes, and gloriously so. They didn’t play nearly enough for me; in addition to Fury Of The Storm and Through The Fire And The Flames, Operation Ground And Pound, Black Winter Night, My Spirit Will Go On and Above The Winter Moonlight all made appearances. I could have watched another hour had not had enough; I didn't care that I was sick and felt like crap; I felt awesome watching them and screaming along.

I would like to have seen Gamma Ray, who headlined Sunday, but I decided that since I was sick and had an hour drive home, I should leave. It's a pity - I'm not a huge fan, but I like No World Order and they would have been far more worthwhile than the 'core crap I did see. Such is life.

And there you have it, folks. The 8th New England Metal and Hardcore Festival.

Killing Songs :
Kayla quoted
Other albums by New England Metalfest that we have reviewed:
New England Metalfest - Day Two - April 29th, 2006, The Worcester Palladium, Worcester, MA reviewed by Kayla and quoted
New England Metalfest - Day One - April 28th, 2006, The Worcester Palladium, Worcester, MA reviewed by Kayla and quoted
New England Metalfest - 2005 Day Two reviewed by Jay and quoted
New England Metalfest - 2003 Day Two reviewed by Jay and quoted
New England Metalfest - 2003 Day One reviewed by Jay and quoted
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