The metal gods shone down on Leeds, and delivered Yorkshire with a huge slice of Metal heaven.
The Scandanian heavy metal history boys arrived, bringing along Lordi and Baby Metal for the ride. With ten studio albums full of songs focusing on moments from wars, the stage is set with a front like the trenches with bard wire running along, machine guns standing in for microphone stands, and at the back sits a huge tank with drums standing proud at the top. This is an epic visual, and warrants the huge sign which sits high above all running across the huge panoramic staging, The Tour To End All Tours. But will it be the tour to end all tours, can they deliver this.
First up to get everyone warmed up, Finnish Eurovision winners Lordi, to think of Eurovision, you never think heavy metal, but Lordi were the game changers. Lots of support for Lordi, and they came out to bring it and get Leeds rocking. Strangely by the end Mr Lordi was going on about how the fans didn't want them their and they only had a few songs left, maybe this was just Finnish humour, as the fans were certainly loving Lordi set.
As soon as left, the pit wall filled with flags and fans pushed through for Baby Metal, bring their heavy brand of kawaii metal, with a high energy none stop set. This gig is an absolute feast of rock, and the main course hasn't even been delivered.
When Sabaton arrive they certainly turn the heat up, the speaker above blows from the first chord being struck, pyro delight as fire shots across all the stage, as the massive tank drum smokes with the canon fire. Joakim Brodén then rocks in with a rocket launcher to take out the tank, it's visually brilliant, funny, and metal heaven.
Sabaton are outstanding, non stop high energy, brilliantly planned sets, from german scientist, the red baron, and a whole rafter of video imagery setting the scene of every song. Joakim Brodén show's great humour when stopping to address their audience, with thanks, which includes plenty of big screen visuals of them throughout, and how it's night one of the tour, so shit will happen and they'll fuck up.
If shit did happen, it's hard to know when, as it was a perfect night of the die hard rock fan. Sabaton threw everything at Leeds, including snow, and Leeds threw it right back at them.
Sabaton are an absolute must see. I didn't arrive a fan, embarrassingly I arrived after only listening to them the day before, which is madness considering my love for Metal, which was the stable diet of music I grew up on. I certainly left one, and can't wait to catch them again.
Ghost Division Bismarck
The Last Stand
Into the Fire
Soldier of Heaven
The Red Baron
The Attack of the Dead Men
To Hell and Back