The weather may be sweltering, the sweat dripping down every crack but tonight we’re here to see Arch Enemy in one of Cardiff’s newer venues the Tramshed. It’s a comfortable size for the lineup and it’s good to see it packed so early on.
Soilwork dive straight into their set and from the go sound meaty. A few songs in and a slight nostalgia hits many fans bring out the headbangers in force. If you were one of those who went to local metal gigs as a youth with the same people, with the same bands and you’d just have pure and simple fun – well, that’s what it feels like watching Soilwork. People around bump into friends, others drink together, others get the pit going. It’s an overwhelmingly friendly crowd and it feels great. On stage the band play solid and expressive. Amidst the 2001 fall out of metal bands Soil have down well to stay afloat, but tonight confirms why.
As the Tramshed fills up to capacity, with the hot weather it almost feels like a festival crowd. Everyones rowdy and geared up. Arch Enemy are another band that seem to keep on going, they tour relentlessly and albeit a singer change everyone is still as keen. As they kick off into Yesterday Is Dead and Gone it’s is easy to remember why they’re so loved, their unique blend of metal still stands firm.
Alissa’s costume overwhelms the set with long black strips flying off in various directions as she runs riot around the stage. She does’t stop, the momentum keeps on flying out. Alissa truly owns the venue tonight and is quite an inspiration to watch. The vocals hold strong throughout the night.
Just like Soilwork they kept old and new fans happy with a mixed set and a huge one at that. Both guitarists have their moments and perform with execution. The band entirely brew a huge energy on stage. They are a force to be reckoned with and as they leave they stage they truly deserve the praise people gave them tonight.
Arch EnemyTramshed, Cardiff - August 23rd, 2016.
Photographer: Nadine Ballantyne