I must admit I was a little surprised when I saw that Silent Voices had announced a date in Cardiff – partly because they’re only a small Finnish band and partly because it was one of only two UK dates. Having lived in Cardiff for quite some time now, I’ve gotten used to bands skipping the city when they tour here, so this really was a pleasant surprise.
Unfortunately the turnout wasn’t as great as I hoped it would be, but this didn’t affect their performance and they put on a great show regardless, filling Bogiez with their fantastic mix of prog and metal. I honestly can’t praise them enough.
They opened with a new song, Fear Of Emptiness, which quite simply blew me away. Whilst I do love their other material, this (and all the other new songs they played) just seemed to have an edge that the older stuff didn’t.
Following this was The Wings Of Rage. Having parted with their old singer, I was really interested to hear their live singer Teemu’s interpretation of their old songs – and honestly, it sounded like the songs had been written for him. His voice just seemed to fit them perfectly and I found I preferred his vocals and style of delivery to their ex-frontman’s and one of the best songs of the night was Blood Of Eden. Although it was already a very powerful song, Teemu’s vocals added another dimension to the song and you could really hear the emotion in his voice as he belted out the words to it. It truly felt like a privilege to witness such a brilliant rendition of the song and it led very nicely into a fantastic Black Sabbath cover – Cross Of Thorns. It was interesting to hear their interpretation of what is actually one of my favourite Black Sabbath songs, and they really covered it well – it was a refreshing take on the original.
I’d been really excited to hear their new material, so when I learnt that their set was actually going to feature the song I was most looking forward to – their instrumental song – I was full of anticipation for it, and it didn’t disappoint. Black Water is a song that really showcases each member’s playing – from Timo’s mind-numbingly complex guitar playing, to Henrik’s speedy and note-perfect keyboard solos, to Jukka-Pekka’s incredible fills and hard-hitting beats and Pasi’s groove-filled bass playing. Each member really got their time to shine in this song and it was a pleasure to watch the four of them just having fun as they jammed together. That’s the thing with this band though. Musically, they’re just as tight live as they are on CD, which is no mean feat.
The highlight of the set had to be the inclusion of Once Lost Life. I’m going to openly admit that I didn’t like the original vocals for this track – whilst the instrumentation is stunning, the vocals felt a little thin and lifeless, but hearing Teemu sing this one turned it into a different song, adding depth and body to the music due to his “meatier” tone of voice. Definitely the strongest song of the night.
They finished with End Of Days, which was a great resolution to their set. It really was refreshing to see the five-piece playing together with such ease and confidence with one another, and to those who didn’t make it to the show, I simply wish to say this: you missed out!