Lordi were famously the first hard rock / metal band to win the Eurovision Song Contest back in 2006 with “Hard Rock Hallelujah”, but what have they been up to in the twelve years since their triumphant victory? I headed along to The Garage in Highbury on Sunday to find out.
This was the first of only two UK dates on the band’s Sextourcism European Tour (the other being in Sheffield on 22 October) and while the show wasn’t advertised as being sold out, the 600-capacity venue was rammed, which was impressive for a Sunday night.
First to hit the stage were Egokills who describe themselves as a “band of metal loving hippies from Tampere, Finland“. I really enjoyed their hippy-metal and they were a great band to get everyone warmed up for the rest of the evening. They played a fantastically groovy yet heavy set featuring tracks from their latest album Mellowhead which was released earlier this year. Frontman Janne was full of energy and bounded around every inch of the available space on stage (which was largely taken up with props for Lordi’s set which were covered with black cloth)…although at one point he got so into the groove that his mic stand went flying into the head of a guy in the front row – hope you are ok, buddy! A great band I would definitely like to see live again.
Next up were theatrical dark rock/metal band Silver Dust from Switzerland, whose stage props included a large flat-screen TV very convincingly disguised as a gilded mirror. The magic mirror was used throughout the band’s performance to show small clips which told stories aligned with the band’s songs, particularly the opening track “The Unknown Soldier”. All four members of the band were dressed in gothic clothing and have some great stage names: Lord Campbell on vocals & guitar, Tiny Pistol on guitar, Kurghan on bass and new boy Magma on drums. As well as playing a great set of their own material, the band played a brilliant cover of “Bette Davis Eyes” which really got the crowd going.
After two great support bands had performed it was time for the main event – the mighty Lordi. As their team unveiled various stage sets and props, I was looking forward to the show even more, and they certainly didn’t disappoint. Each member of the band strode onto the stage to huge cheers from the crowd, and the band launched straight into the title track from their latest album Sexorcism (released in May of this year), followed by “Would You Love A Monsterman” from their 2002 album Get Heavy. I was impressed with the detail in the band’s costumes, which are apparently all designed and made by Mr Lordi himself!
The band’s leader acknowledged that it was a Sunday night but assured the crowd that he had been in touch with everyone’s bosses/teachers and had arranged for us all to have the day off – sadly that didn’t extend to the press team as I sit here writing this review in my lunch-break at my ‘real’ job!
This was my first time seeing Lordi live and I was genuinely impressed; the costumes and props were fantastic, their music was a wonderful mix of catchy and heavy, and there was a generous slice of humour running throughout the evening. The band played a stonking set not only featuring tracks from Sexorcism, but also fan-favourites from albums such as The Arockalypse. I would definitely go and check them out again next time they come to London!
Photos by Katie Frost Photography
- Would You Love A Monsterman
- Missing Miss Charlene
- Your Tongue’s Got The Cat
- Blood Red Sandman
- It Snows In Hell
- She’s A Demon
- Naked In My Cellar
- Rock Police
- Hug You Hardcore
- The Riff
- Who’s Your Daddy
- Devil Is A Loser
- Hard Rock Hallelujah