A loyal hoard of fans gathered at the Metro for a night of dueling guitar solos, 8 minute long songs, and enough headbanging to start a tidal wave. Power metal was the theme and powerful they were as Sonata Arctica hosted Friday night’s concert with support from The Agonist and Cellador.
Those who made it out for the 6pm start were treated to Omaha, Nebraska’s Cellador who have been building a strong Chicago following over the past year and a half. The band played a 30 minute opening set which included tracks “Leaving it All Behind”, “A Sign Far Beyond”, and “No Chances Lost”. If you missed them this time around be sure to catch them when they return with King Diamond in early ’08.
The Agonist provided something a little harder in the middle of the power sandwich to add a nice variety to the night. Singer Alissa White-Gluz combined harsh growling vocals with melodic harmonies which showed off her impressive vocal range. The group sliced through the stage whipping guitars and hair around as though they were deadly weapons. The heavy crunchy sound mixed with high pitch solos is a winning combination that has earned them a slot with Century Media Records and a video debut on MTV’s Headbangers ball that was slated for the following night.
The Metro was instantly turned into an amphitheatre when Finnish rockers Sonata Arctica struck their first chords. The sound was crisp and clear from side of stage all the way to the top of the balcony making it seem like the venue had doubled in size. The audience sang every word to every song and took the lead when singer Tony Kakko would turn the mic to them. The set seemed carefully planned to build excitement with triumphant choruses and heartfelt ballads. Sonata played for almost an hour and a half covering material from their 1999 release “Ecliptica” all the way through this year’s album on Nuclear Blast Records titled “Unia”. The set list included tracks “Caleb”, “My Land”, “Full Moon”, “Victoria’s Secret” and “Don’t Say A Word” .