Friday, December 30, 2016

Power Metal Concert Brings Together Five Great Bands

On Dec 10th, my friend and I went to the Sonata Arctica*LeavesEyes*Omnium Gatherum*Infidel Rising*Millennial Reign Concert at Trees Dallas.

I’ve literally been waiting to see Sonata Arctica live since I was 12 years old and listened to their music at a friend’s house for the first time. For that reason alone, there wasn’t even a second's hesitation about going when I saw they were coming to Dallas.

Having two small kids and a husband in the military made arranging this more complicated though.

I didn't have a plan yet, but I got VIP Meet &  Greet tickets and was just hoping that something would work out. Of course, my husband had to work on this specific weekend, but my wonderful neighbor and her teenage daughter came to the rescue and watched the little ones so I could go.

That was a huge favor, because I was going to be gone a long while. Google said it was about a 2 hour drive to Dallas, then we would need time to find parking, grab a quick snack for dinner and be at the Meet & Greet check-in by 5:45pm.

That morning went by so quickly. I had decided the night before to add some purple to my blonde hair as soon as I woke up, and that turned into an almost 3 hour hair dye ordeal. I loved the result though.

After that, I had to somehow feed the kids breakfast, run a load of laundry, pick up the house a bit, do my make-up and I also had the stupid idea to put curlers in my hair – go figure.

The original plan was that I would leave around 11.30am to pick up my friend Kristena, and then head up to Dallas. I managed to leave the house around 12.10pm.

I was so excited, it was ridiculous!

Once I picked up Kristena, we hit the road. The drive was rather uneventful and traffic wasn’t too bad but Google maps 2 hour estimate turned out completely unrealistic. We really needed about 3 hours (thank goodness I always over plan!).

Poor Kristena had to listen to my singing on the entire drive!

Trees, the downtown Dallas venue, looked quite big from the outside and the tour busses were already parked in front of it. Sadly, the parking lot was locked up and we got told it wouldn’t even open until around 6pm, but right across from it we found a parking spot that looked quite safe. 

We had some tacos and beer after figuring out the parking situation, and then it was finally time to stand in line. It was cold and they ended up not letting us in until around 6:30pm. Brr!

The VIP Meet & Greet was pretty cool. I am from Germany, and I haven’t been to any concerts before in the States. I was super nervous over how this all goes here, and I also never in my life had VIP tickets for a concert.

The set up was nice. We all lined up in groups of 4 & 5 people, got a signed poster, a chance to get merchandise signed and they took a picture of us with the band.

The guys from Sonata Arctica seemed pretty cool. I somehow imagined them louder though but I was honestly just star struck at the moment. I barely remembered to hand them the cookies that I had made for them.

After that, we went to the bar a bit, got a look around the venue, and then we slowly started making our way to the stage to secure first row spots. The venue had quite a decent size and I need to point out that it was very clean, especially the bathrooms. (these things matter!)

This is my impression of each of the five bands that played:

Millennial Reign

The first band on stage was Millenial Reign, a smaller local Melodic Metal / Power Metal band. I honestly need to say, they surprised me.

The vocalist looked older than the rest, but wow, he has a great and powerful voice. I really enjoyed their opening act and from the few times that I looked around me, I could see that they got quite a good portion of the crowd moving. I don’t have much information on them but I checked out their facebook page after the concert.

Infidel Rising

Infidel Rising is a Power Metal / Progressive Metal band. 
Omg, I loved this band and was in total shock that I had never heard of them before. I loved the whole show they put on. It was just great music and I was headbanging like there was no tomorrow.

It turned out that the Drummer, Bassist and Guitarist are the same as from Millennial Reign; which honestly had me confused over the first song, because I wasn’t really sure if the first band just swapped singers and added a keyboardist, or what was going on.

The style of the music was definitely different though, and by the second song they kind of had me fascinated to the point that I decided I will have to check out that band some more after the concert.

The Vocals were also just amazing. I loved the whole male main vocals and the female backing vocals.

Also, have I mentioned that the female vocalist and keyboardist wore the best-looking corset I have ever seen?!? I need one.

After their show, I got to talk to Pasche for a few minutes and she just seems like a really cool lady.

At the very end of the show (I mean after all bands were done that night) I got a chance to stop by their merchandise stand and got a signed album.

I loved them so much, I plan on writing a separate review regarding their album, because guys, if you consider yourself a metalhead and have a soft spot for Progressive / Power Metal, you need to hear this!

I plan to attend more of their shows for sure! (If you go, buy the shirt! Just do it! Don’t be like me who’s sitting here right now, regretting that I didn’t buy it right there and then!)

You should definitely check them out on Facebook and YouTube!

Omnium Gatherum

This was the first time I'd experienced death metal band Omnium Gatherum, and it was another great experience for me.

Death metal is just really my thing, and I am pretty sure its the main reason why my neck has been hurting so much. I don’t think I ever stopped headbanging during Omnium Gatherum's set, except for a few moments to look up to the stage, snatch a picture here and there, and check to make sure Kristena was still all right.

I couldn’t believe I had never heard of them before either, although I know why. I mean, let’s get real, since having kids, my music has not expanded. I am still listening to the albums I bought 8 /10 / 12 years back for the most part, but after this concert, I'm definitely getting a couple of their albums in the near future.

They put on a great show and are worth being seen live. I added them to my band tracker app that same night to make sure I can see them live again when they are in the area, and I'll be keeping up with them on Facebook.

Leaves Eyes

I honestly need to say, the Viking Metal band Leaves Eyes put on the most impressive show of all the bands that night.

I mean, come on, they had a stage full of Vikings and their male Vocalist changed into a Viking outfit as well during their show and was wielding a giant sword above our heads.

I also loved the classical, almost operatic voice of their female vocalist.  I actually ended up making a little video clip of their show to show to my son, Noah. He’s probably the biggest Viking Metal fan I know.

I also genuinely enjoyed their music and hope to see them again some time (hopefully with Noah!).
Meanwhile, I'll be following them on Facebook.

Sonata Arctica

This is the act that I came for. I was beyond excited when I saw them walking on stage and couldn’t even believe this was really happening.

They put on one hell of a great show and were very engaging with the audience. As I already said a couple of times, I am a headbanger. I am really that chick that dresses up cute, spends hours to do her hair just to have it all look like a crazy mess in the end because I just can’t help myself.

They had us clapping, jumping, singing, swinging. It was a great, emotional and fun experience.

There’s just something special about seeing one of your favorite bands live.

What I also would like to point out is that their new album, The Ninth Hour, received a lot of not so positive critique, especially for being ‘not as heavy.’ Some fans seemed a little disappointed in it.

I have to admit, it’s not my favorite album, but then again, I have always preferred live albums over studio albums and For The Sake Of Revenge and Live In Finland are both the bomb.

Back to the show on Saturday:  If you didn't care for The Ninth Hour, live those same pieces are a whole different story. They were definitely a lot heavier than on the album.

I think it was definitely worth seeing them, and I hope to do so again in the future. They have been such a big part of my life, and I connect so many beautiful, sad and emotional memories with their songs.

Their lyrics are also very touching and have never disappointed. I don’t want to get too much into detail at this point, but I am sure their music has saved my life once or twice before.

What also deserves a shout out, they seem to have the world’s happiest drummer. He did not once stop smiling throughout their set.

Keep track of Sonata Arcadia on Facebook.

In the end, I need to say this was well worth the $66 for a VIP ticket. I so hope to see them all live again soon. The whole mix of bands just seemed to compliment each other very well.

I thought I would be sad when it was over, but I just felt really satisfied and this was the best ‘mom’s night out’ I’ve ever had.

The concert was on a Friday, and the following Wednesday was the first day that I did not have to put Tiger Balm on my neck to get through the day. It was great and so worth the pain lol

Big shout out to my friend Kristena who went there with me. She was far from being a metalhead but I feel like we might have converted her that night. Kristena, I so appreciate you and that you went there with me.

I also would like to mention how great I thought it was that they had local bands as openers.
A lot of times we are all so focused on the ones who already made it big that we forget to pay attention to the smaller ones that are rising all around us (I am sooo guilty of this, but this will change!!).

It is just such a great way for them to get their name out and I am sure I found a new favorite band from among the local ones.

Important: When you go to a metal concert, get the ear plugs to protect your ears! I did not, and was deaf on my right ear until about Monday around noon. I had serious concerns that I might have ruined my ear completely.

Be smarter than me, get the plugs for your ears' sake!


  1. looks awesome. I'm surprised that I haven't heard of any of these bands - I'm usually pretty good at keeping up with whats new. Thanks for giving me some new stuff to check out

  2. Very cool. Looks like a great time.

  3. I'm glad you had a good time! I've never been able to handle heavy metal. :) I certainly wouldn't be able to now at age 63. lol! Thanks for sharing with SYC.

  4. Patricia, So cool that you got to go! Even through all the challenges that you had to plan for it. The meet and greet looks great, it's so fun to meet our favorite singers and band members up close and personal! LOL take care of that neck!

  5. So glad you were able to attend - it looks like an amazing event! It's always so cool getting to see bands you've enjoyed since you were a kid! Thank you for sharing the experience with us at Hearth and Soul.

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