Freedom Call

KB, Malmö - 2014

Text: Tobias Nilsson Photo: Lunah Lauridsen

Think of the happiest power metal band you know. Unless you’re already thinking about Freedom Call, take whatever name you came up with and multiply it by 10, and then you begin to have an idea of what this is all about. Heck, they even wrote a song where the chorus goes; “…it’s a happy metal party!”
And they can get away with it too, that’s the best part!

“Are you ready for a German heavy metal invasion in Sweden?!”
- Christian ‘Chris’ Bay (vocals/guitar)

Something different was happening at KB this evening, and I’m not just talking about the line-up. No, the big difference lay in the fact that the place was almost packed even before the support band hit the stage – this is almost unheard of at this place, and in the north here in general.
So, why were everyone coming earlier than usual to the gig? The simple answer lay in the fact that Freedom Call seemed every bit as sought after this evening as the main act, Edguy, was. Why, heck, I even heard a few repeat my own sentiment, that Freedom Call was the main reason for showing up at all! If that’s not popularity, I don’t know what is!
When recently joined drummer Ramy Ali took his place behind the tiny drumkit even before the intro began, we could already hear loud cheering from the audience, and when the rest of the gang joined him on stage short thereafter the volume only went up! Bassist Ilker Ersin was back in his rightful position, and basically looked like he had never left in the first place, so now, and this is in no way to diminish Ali as he did a great job which I have no complaints about, all we missed was Dan Zimmermann...

The show itself began with Union Of The Strong from their latest album, Beyond, and even though this is not an album we have invested any time in as of yet, it was easy enough to get into the spirit of the thing as it was classic Freedom Call style from the get go, even down to the recycling of lyrics (how many times can they build lyrics centred around the phrase “carry on”?). Bay had the audience applauding in beat to the song, helping those few out who weren’t able to sing along just quite yet.
Two more songs from Beyond were played, Heart Of A Warrior and Come On Home. The former is your typical classic battle anthem, whereas the latter is one of those party tunes that the band has begun to incorporate as of late, perfected already with the song Power & Glory which incidentally was played just before Come On Home.
Lyrical references or not, we all know that (mostly) all Freedom Call songs are party tunes however, and this night was no different. 50 minutes was what they got, and they spent them very well. The setlist was neatly spun together, the performance nailed it where especially Bay and Lars Rettkowitz gave as lively a delivery as the small stage would allow (Edguy’s drums were already set up, so Freedom Call had to make do with what little space was left after their own drums were installed on the floor), and the sound wasn’t all bad either.

Which brings us to the fly in the soup...
When I say the sound wasn’t all bad, I am solely referring to the mix of the instruments, as they were relatively well balanced against each other. He part that didn’t hold up very well though, was the volume.
I can’t say if KB has had some restrictions laid upon them or if it was only a miss during Freedom Call, but the volume of the whole deal was very low. Much too low in fact for the music to be able to deliver any kind of punch. Sure, I liked what I heard, as did the rest of the crowd, but the thought always haunted me at the edge of my good mood; ”think how good this would be if they only turned it up a bit”.

“Did you remember to practice from home? I did!”
- Bay (vocals/guitar)

Well, if the band couldn’t be loud enough, the crowd surely showed that they could! Freedom Call has a back catalogue of very sing-along friendly songs, and this was taken full advantage of by the Malmö audience, and never was this seen or heard better than in the song Warriors. The end of this was played no less than three times in order for everyone to get it all out!
Mentioning Warriors brings another memory with it as well, a memory about Bay inciting the audience to shout yeah in reply to the question if there were any warriors out there. A normal shout wasn’t enough though, that was too weak, no we should get down deep and growl to show our Viking roots. I couldn’t help but wonder if Bay could see the irony in his request, and if you’ve heard the song you know what I mean...
Physical activity was also on the agenda, and Bay and the boys had everyone jumping in Tears Of Babylon, and the rest of the time fist pumping and neck swinging had our blood running hot.

Yes, our blood ran hot for Freedom Call this night, and as the only fully functioning power metal band out there at the moment, I can only give their effort a good score. Too bad the technical stuff wasn’t fully with them, I hope that’ll be fixed until next time.


Union Of The Strong
We Are One
Freedom Call
Heart of A Warrior
The Quest
Power & Glory
Come On Home
Tears Of Babylon
Land Of Light

Freedom Call

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