Concert Reviews

Eclipse / One Desire / Franklin Zoo Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     May 06, 2017    
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Eclipse / One Desire / Franklin Zoo - The Rescue Rooms, Nottingham (UK) - 19 April 2017

I do like Nottingham. I have always travelled for the annual Firefest (and now Rockingham) pilgrimage and have no qualms about making the two hundred mile round trip for other gigs. I consider it a bonus when the show happens to fall on a Friday or Saturday (so I have an excuse to stay for the night and quench my thirst) but hump day is a good enough reason to book a cheap room as well. Eclipse have just released their 'Monumentum' album and this short UK tour will be a showcase for some of those new songs.

When Franklin Zoo made an unfussy entrance to the stage just before 8pm, the Rescue Rooms venue was barely half full. The Danish five-piece proved to be nothing more than a distraction for thirty minutes and though the performances were good, the music was decidedly throwaway and unmemorable. Rasmus Revsbech had a decent voice and the riffs and rhythm section packed a wallop but the musical style wasn't really comparable to what the crowd would be hearing for the rest of the night; it had more of a Grungy edge.

The One Desire debut album has proved to be something of a revelation and has received glowing reviews in the music press and on many forums. It is hardly ground-breaking or revolutionary but it is highly infectious and very enjoyable. The crowd had swelled considerably and the Finns received a healthy welcome as they got under way. The seven songs were all taken from the album and were faithful reproductions of the studio versions. Lead singer (and guitarist) Andre Linman had a voice suited to this type of material and what he lacked in stage presence he made up for with his singing. There was no flashy showmanship, just a concentration on the music, and the introduction of keyboards complimented the guitars to give the sound a considerable depth. Guitar solos were split between Linman and Jimmy Westerlund and both displayed skill and melody in their playing. 'Love Injection' and the ballad 'This Is Where The Heartbreak Begins' proved Linman has a good range, but best song for me was 'Buried Alive' (an Erik Martensson co-write) which was full of power and had an Eclipse style hook at its heart. Many bands are just studio projects these days so I have complete admiration for One Desire for taking their songs on the road. They will be a great addition to any one of the Melodic Rock festivals now in existence and with added experience and a development of stage craft they should have a promising future.

Fireworks - The Ultimate Magazine For Melodic Rock Music

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From somewhat humble beginnings Sweden's Eclipse have taken the Melodic Rock world by storm in recent years, and Erik Martensson has proved to be a song-writer and producer of note – the go to guy it would seem for a number of artists. The new 'Monumentum' album picks up from where 'Armageddonize' and its predecessor 'Bleed & Scream' left off, fine examples of how to write and structure commercial Melodic Rock music. Far from being content to let the music do the talking Eclipse are always keen to play live and as well as being festival regulars are also happy to tour smaller venues such as tonight's Rescue Rooms. It is clear the band have faith in the new songs and half of the set is made up of 'Monumentum' material. It means that some favourites had to be left out but when the quality is so high it is difficult to complain. 'Vertigo' and 'Never Look Back' got us under way and fortunately the sound mix was nice and clear.

Eclipse - Live 2

The taped keyboards underpin the guitars of Martensson and Magnus Henriksen and Magnus Ulfstedt (bass) alongside Philip Crusner (drums) laid down a rock solid rhythm. Eclipse have a fantastic arsenal of songs and each one is full of melody and easy to digest. Martensson rarely stood still, whilst Henriksen and Ulfstedt took up positions stage left and right respectively, sidestepping the limelight in some ways, which allowed their lead-singer the freedom to conduct the crowd. The energy levels throughout the show never dipped as new songs 'Killing Me', 'Jaded' and 'Hurt' continued the melodic trend. Crusner got a brief solo and had the right amount of showmanship and facial gestures that kept the photographers happy, whilst the other guys got a short break. 'Battlegrounds' could have been Thin Lizzy's 'Emerald' for a new generation, followed immediately by the similarly structured 'Downfall Of Eden' and a dark and brooding 'Black Rain'. 'Blood Enemies' channelled a little more Lizzy whilst 'Stand On Your Feet' was a mini anthem, catchy as hell and perfect for a sing-along. A brief pause gave me the chance to move positions and grab a beer before the encore of 'I Don't Wanna Say I'm Sorry' and 'Bleed & Scream'.

The band were happy to chat and sign CDs after the show and it is sessions like that with the fans that give gigs so much more meaning and make them more memorable. Another great night in Nottingham and I can't wait for Eclipse's return in August.

Dave Bott

Eclipse - Live 1

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