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Thursday 16th February 2012

steve goldby


The 100 Club seemed like an unusual choice of venue for Dragonforce and Pythia but it worked rather well and it was most definitely a triumphant night for Heavy Metal.

The buzz was all about how new Dragonforce frontman Marc Hudson would fill those big boots left by ZP Theart - more on ZP very shortly - and he carried off the role in fine style. Full credit to him for a great performance.

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Pythia - commonly known as the Oracle of Delphi, the priestess at the Temple of Apollo at Delphi - took to the small stage early and made it totally their own as frontwoman Emily Ovenden filled the venue with fantastic tales of the darker side of life, love, passion and the supernatural.

There's plenty of bands producing this style of 'symphonic, fantasy Metal' but Pythia stand out from the crowd in a big way. This is down to Emily's vocals as she is far and away the best female vocalist in Metal today.

Captivating was the word - the tunes themselves and the intensity of the vocal delivery just grab you and hold you until you are totally drawn in by the song and she knows how to work an audience as well.

Full marks to Pythia who go straight to the top of the 'must see again soon' list.

Emily Ovenden, Pythia

The 100 Club was advertised as 'sold out' last night but it wasn't, unless around 50-70 people who had bought tickets just didn't show. I've been in the 100 Club when it really has been sold out and trust me - last night it wasn't.

It was still a decent sized crowd though and they made more than enough noise during the changeover with raucous chants of "Dra-gon-force" breaking out at will. You could feel the anticipation...

And the energy level when they hit the stage was in the stratosphere, despite very early sound problems blighting the opening bars of 'Heroes Of Our Time'. If the singer is singing and there is no vocal coming out of the PA, turn the fucking vocal volume up. Surely it's not that hard?

It didn't stop Marc though as he quickly drew the crowd's attention and delivered a full-blooded, full range performance that left you in no doubt that the band have picked the right man for the job.

Perhaps a little more work needs doing on the between song delivery because Marc's upper-class accent doesn't quite fit the genre but this is a mere observation and certainly not intended as criticism.

Dragonforce were on great form last night and clearly had the times of their lives on the small 100 Club stage but they looked too 'big' for the venue and will surely be playing much larger gigs in the very near future. That is to take nothing away from last night's performance however as it was a solid message that Dragonforce are back and ready to conquer again.

The band paid homage to ZP-era tracks as well as playing new song 'Cry Thunder' from the forthcoming 'The Power Within' album and the new track was one of the standout songs of the whole night.


So it's game on again for Dragonforce with Marc Hudson and it won't be long after the release of 'The Power Within' that ZP's new project will surface. We're sitting on the details at the moment and when you take a listen to what we've heard, you'll be blown away.

It remains to be seen whether ZP's new band and Dragonforce will ever share a stage and whether the Metal world is big enough for both of them. We think it is. You can decide in the coming weeks when both albums hit the shelves.

Dragonforce Setlist:

Heroes Of Our Time
Operation Ground And Pound
Cry Thunder
My Spirit Will Go On
Lost Fallen World
Black Fire
The Last Journey Home
Fury Of The Storm

Through The Fire And Flames


Back to Steve's Heavy Metal Chronicles index page



Wacken Winter Nights 2018 takes place between February 23rd and 25th 2018 and the great news is that you can now experience a full-on, top class German Metal Festival easily and affordably.

It only takes an hour to fly to Hamburg from London and we've had longer journeys than that within the capital and they were certainly more expensive than the £33 air ticket that just appeared in our 'flights to Wacken Winter Nights' search.


Wacken Winter Nights is organised by the same team who are responsible for the world's greatest Metal festival, Wacken-Open-Air and the 2018 bill includes Skyclad, Orphaned Land, Elvenking, Finntroll, Grave Digger, Aeverium, Comes Vagantes, Coppelius, Corvus Corax, Die Pressgëng, Elvellon, Heimataerde, Hell-O-Matic, Ignis Fatuu, Ingrimm, Irdorath, Johnny Deathshadow, Krayenzeit, Letzte Instanz, Mr Hurley und die Pulveraffen, Pampatut, Pat Razket, Schandmaul, Sündenrausch, The Aberlour's, The Moon And The Nightspirit, Torfrock, Visions Of Atlantis, Vroudenspil, Wind Rose and more.

Besides this rich billing of superb Metal bands, there is so much more to see in the festival area including the medieval market and also the walking acts and jugglers you will meet at the theme worlds, including Robert Blake, three-time World Cup winner of street magic.

Wacken Winter Nights is something not to be missed and you can check out the amazing ticket and accommodation prices right here.

We just priced up the whole four day trip with hotels, flights, shuttles and festival tickets for less than £300 and we don't think you will get a better value festival than that, anywhere.


MetalTalk recently sat down with Wacken founder and owner Thomas Jensen and that interview will be online next week and it's a fascinating insight into how Wacken originated from nothing to become the world's premiere Heavy Metal event.


Wacken 2018 takes place from 2nd to 4th August 20218 and as with Wacken Winter Nights, if you have never experienced all it has to offer, then you owe it to yourself to remedy that.

Already announced for Wacken 2018 are Judas Priest, Nightwish, Running Wild (exclusive), Arch Enemy, Dirkschneider, Doro (Special Anniversary Show), In Extremo, Sepultura, Amorphis, Amaranthe, Firewind, W.A.R., Belphegor, Mantar, Knorkator, Deserted Fear, Watain, Night Demon, Epica, Knorkator, Belphegor, Firewind, Deserted Fear and many more and we'll have more Wacken 2018 announcements during December.

As well as being the greatest Heavy Metal festival in the world, it is without a doubt the Mecca of Metal and the one thing that every single person who loves our music should have on their bucket list.

For 2018, MetalTalk have joined forces with Wacken-Open-Air to help you get to Wacken easily and inexpensively and you can peruse the ticket and travel options right here.

If you are interested in going to Wacken 2018 and have questions, please fill out the form below and we will contact you with answers to all your enquiries. You are under no obligation whatsoever by filling this form out. We won't add you to any mailing lists or send you loads of spam - all we will do is help you get to Wacken as easily and inexpensively as possible.



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