In June 2013 a brand new band played their first gig anywhere at the Little Devil – a tiny bar in Tilburg that holds barely more than 100 people. That band was Gloryhammer and tonight saw them make a triumphant return to Tilburg (their first gig here since that first one), at the 013 with Powerwolf. As it’s a sold out gig thats 3000 fans – thirty times as many as at that first gig. Obviously a lot of people were there as Powerwolf fans but it soon became clear that most of the audience were fans of both bands as they sang along to all the words during Gloryhammer’s set.
They took to the stage after an intro tape of Tom Jones singng “Delilah” before starting their hour-long set. It’s a superb set that featured tracks from all three of their albums, with around half the songs being from the latest album.
With Chris Bowes no longer playing in the band they’ve moved on from being “the side project of that bloke from Alestorm” to a really strong band in their own right. They’ve come a long way from the early days of playing in small venues and are perfectly at home on big festival stages as well as big venues like the 013. Thomas Winkler is a great frontman and really gets the crowd going. At one point he picks a volunteer from the audience and sends them on a quest – to ride (by which I mean crowdsurf) to the fortress (the bar) and return with alcohol to power the Hootsman. Amazingly not only did the guy crowdsurf to the bar, but he crowdsurfed back with a tray of beers and didnt spill any even as security caught him, and the beer was handed over to the band for the Hootsman to drink. To be honest if the gig had ended after Gloryhammer’s set I’d have gone home considering it a great night, but instead there was more to come.
Powerwolf’s stage set was impressive – not content with a backdrop they’d also got them at the sides too to give a really impressive look, and as the show progressed the backdrop changed. Multiple levels, stairs and more made the visual side of things great, and that combined with the band’s outfits and makeup really did give a great look. A good look though is nothing without good music and thankfully Powerwolf deliver there too. It’s great Power Metal full of catchy tunes and singalong choruses and they really go down well tonight with lots of fans singing along.
Tonight’s gig really was a perfect pairing – Powerwolf and Gloryhammer both have a fun feel to their music and both appeal to the same sort of Power Metal fans, so unlike some tours where fans arent keen on one of the bands, tonight virtually everyone seemed to enjoy the two bands equally. A great night.