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Sabaton @ O2 Apollo, Manchester, UK

SABATON/Accept/Twilight Force
in Friday, 13 January 2017 at O2 Apollo
by Emily Coulter


Tonight is Manchester's turn at hosting “The Last Tour” headlined by the all-mighty SABATON; who are supported by ACCEPT and TWILIGHT FORCE in the quest to take over one of Manchester's biggest venues - the 02 Apollo. Before the doors are anywhere near open hardcore fans are queuing far around the block to have a night of pure Heavy Metal.

If you had to imagine a Power Metal band in your head then TWILIGHT FORCE is exactly what you’d see. The mystical band are the first on the Manchester Apollo stage and make a huge impression.

 





 
The six-man/elf/mystical beings cram the stage with their high-pitched vocals and enchanting keyboards to get the crowd hyped for the evening. Their setlist comprises of songs like “Battle Of Arcane Might”, “To The Stars”, “Gates Of Glory” and more. TWILIGHT FORCE are even better live than on CD and are certainly not to be missed - even for those who do not enjoy power metal - for this is a band that certainly are something else.
 
ACCEPT hit the stage 2nd to an incredibly loud crowd and an even bigger backdrop. Vocalist Mark Tornillo runs onto the stage to join the fast and heavy group in “Stampede”, which is in turn followed by tracks “Stalingrad”, “London Leatherboys” and “Fast As A Shark”. Yet no ACCEPT setlist would be complete without fan favourite “Balls To The Wall”, which has the crowd jumping to every beat.

 




 
Guitarist Wolf Hoffmann speeds around the stage and keeps the band on top form throughout the set; no matter how fast he's going he's leading the way.
 

ACCEPT are very different compared to the rest of the bill, swaying towards thrash than power metal, but they fit in well and gives great variety to the evening; they certainly won't be disappearing any time soon.

The mighty SABATON approach the stage to the introductory song “In The Army Now”, with Hannes Van Dahl climbing on his tank of a drum set and getting the crowd fired up.
 



Finally the rest of the band appears on stage to “Ghost Division” that has vocalist Joakim Broden sliding onto the stage; Broden is easily one of the most energetic vocalists in modern Metal and gets the crowd shouting along to every word.
 


 
A SABATON gig wouldn't be complete without guys dressed up as various types of soldiers would it? So as soon as “Sparta” begins a group of men dressed as Spartan warriors guard the band behind them.
 


 
Members Par Sundstrom, Tommy Johansson and Chris Rorland work in perfect sync to create heavy, dramatic guitar and bass sounds to go with their warfare-inspired backdrop of music.
 



The setlist comprises of a mix of tracks from albums old and new but they all go down well with the packed crowd of warriors. Highlights from the set include “The Final Solution” (in an acoustic arrangement) and the crowd roaring along to “Primo Victoria”.
 



 
Setlist:
We're In The Army Now
Ghost Division
Sparta
Blood Of Bannockburn
Swedish Pagans
Carolus Rex
The Last Stand
Far From The Fame
Winged Hussars
The Final Solution (Acoustic)
Night Witches
Resist And Bite
The Lion From The North
The Lost Battalion
Union (Slopes of St.Benedict)
Primo Victoria
Shiroyama
To Hell And Back

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Edited 22 September 2017
 

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