Phoenix — A long of line of dark figures stood waiting outside the Marquee Theatre on September 17th. Even on a Sunday night, fans gathered together under the setting sun, bonding over their shared excitement of the night to come. The Dutch symphonic metal band Epica was joining the Italian gothfathers Lacuna Coil in a show that was sure to not be forgotten.
Elantris & Insomnium
As the stage glowed an ominous red the opening band Elantris, a female-fronted symphonic metal band, perched on the edge of the stage amping up the crowd. The melodic voice of Lindsay Victoria Ketchum mixed with the gravelly screams of Thomas Ullom made for a beautiful contrast and got hearts pumping, Thomas even joined the crowd for moshing. After Elantris, Insomnium took the stage, bringing the crowd to new heights with their super charged energy and in-sync head banging. All the way from Finland, they were excited to be celebrating their 7th album Winter’s Gate.
It was now time for Lacuna Coil to take the stage and the crowd pushed forward, the room thick and dripping with anticipation. One-by-one, the band members took to the stage, adorned in their sanitorium costumes. Straight jackets stained red and band members’ faces painted white and red to look like sadistic clowns.
Only the vocalists Cristina Scabbia and Andrea Ferro stood with unpainted faces, their clothes scrawled with lyrics such as “Leave me Alone” in erratic black marker. It was a sight to behold. They immediately launched into song and the crowd’s cheering filled the theatre.
They started off the night with some of their new songs from their latest album, Delirium which was released May, 2016. Songs such as “Delirium” as well as “House of Shame” and “Blood, Tears, Dust” all shook the theatre to the core. In between each song, vocalist Cristina Scabbia would address the crowd and make connections on a personal level. She told the audience to “Leave your problems at the door, because everyone is welcome in the sanatorium!”; and made them cheer as she told them, “We know where we are, and we are headed towards our destiny!”
Midway through their set, Cristina challenged the audience to raise the bar as she burst into their hit song “Swamped” the audience went wild, moshing and throwing their hands in the air. After singing “Come to Me” and “My Demons” Lacuna Coil brought it down a notch, asking the crowd to get out their lighters and cell phones and keep loved ones alive in their hearts as they sang “Downfall.”
Towards the end of their set Lacuna Coil announced a new project for their 20 year anniversary. They will be releasing a book entitled “We Fear Nothing” in 2018, which will document the band’s journey from beginning to their current platform. It should be an amazing and vivid illustration full of their accomplishments and past concerts. They finished their set with “Nothing Stands in Our Way” emphasizing that they believe in destiny! Even as the band members left stage, the audience was soaking in their message of love, acceptance, and strength. But the night wasn’t over.
The last band to take the stage was another female-fronted symphonic metal band, Epica. On their Ultimate Principle Tour, Epica promoted their newest album The Holographic Principle.
The band members took the stage as the eager crowd cheered them on. Vocalist Simone Simons appeared last, in a tight-fitting black leather like dress, flipping her iconic long red hair. Her operatic vocals filled the theatre as guitarists Mark Jansen and Isaac Dela haye wowed the crowd with their fingering skills, parading back and forth. Even the keyboardist Coen Janssen got into it, spinning his keyboard around and headbanging with his bandmates, even with his shaved head!
Green light emanated from behind them as though the audience was transported to a different world, as alternating lights flickered and flashed. Belting out the songs “Our Destiny” and “The Essence of Silence” the audience was electrified as though in a trance. It was the best way to end the night.
Afterwards, it was hard not to dwell on the lyrics and messages of the bands. It felt as though you could take on the world with a newfound passion and strength. With the words echoing in your head, “We Fear Nothing!”, it was time to tackle Monday.
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