Rhapsody Of Fire

Wacken - 2011

Text: Tobias Nilsson Photo: Lunah Lauridsen

Not many bands played on the Party Stage this year which we were going to see, but we weren’t about to miss the epic fantasy warriors of Rhapsody Of Fire. A very good decision it would later turn out, as founding member Luca Turilli shortly after announced his departure from the band, so in a way I suppose it could be seen as a farewell gig (for this line-up at least) even though they didn’t say it at the time...

Rhapsody Of Fire had a pretty early slot as they played between five and six p.m. and they played for most of the part at the same time as Trivium who were on the True Metal Stage, but judging from the vast amount of people who had turned up to listen to the Italians I wouldn’t be surprised if it wouldn’t have been a better fit if the two bands had switched position with each other... Honestly, the place was insanely packed when the disembodied voice of Christopher Lee announced the beginning of the concert by calling out ”...the mighty immortal warriors Rhapsody...”!
In came the band nearly flying with the speed and energy of the very dragonflame that they so happily sing about in their opuses; in fact, their whole show would go on to be an example to others of how to be lively on stage. None of the musicians, maybe with the small exception of drummer Alex Holzwarth and keyboardist Alessandro ’Alex’ Staropoli, could stand still for the entire gig, and even Turilli which I had a (maybe faulty) mental image of one not doing much was often seen out on the edge of the stage to get closer to the audience. Vocalist Fabio Lione I had seen recently as he took part in Kamelot’s tour earlier this summer, so I knew that he had a very good stage-presence, but I must say that it felt like he utilized the capabilities of his voice in a far bigger way here in his original outfit.

I have actually seen Rhapsody Of Fire before this, back in the day when they were just known as Rhapsody, but as you can tell that was a long time ago, and I must admit that I haven’t really kept up to date with their doings, and I guess this was the biggest drawback of the show – I didn’t really know any of the material.
I still enjoyed the concert to some degree, but it was clear to me that all of the fans around me who knew the songs got a lot more out of this than I did. I remember them playing a song in Italian, which was a bit slower paced than the others, but other than that the show is pretty much remembered as one long high-speed, solo-filled ride of power metal which I couldn’t sing along to.
Things could have been better, but I recognise the fact that the largest part of this rest on my own shoulders...

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