Battle Hymns 2011 Tour Review

Concert Date: April 10th 2011
City: Madrid, Spain
Venue: La Riviera

Manowar do not want to come to Italy? Then goes to Manowar in Spain!

It’s the last date of the “Battle Hymns 2011 Tour”, so this is the last chance to enjoy the fantastic “Battle Hymns”, just recently re-recorded, live and in full.
Do I really need to tell how immense, powerful and devastating this concert was? It shall be done!

5 pm: Get the ticket at the box office – it took 1 minute sharp – this already makes you think.
7 pm: We take our place in the line. It is already long, around 3000 people. In spite of the fact that the Spaniards are not famous for being cold and quiet, the line is neat and goes nicely from the club “La Riviera”, downtown Madrid, without any pushing! You can think about this half an hour for each word.
8 pm: We get into the venue and in 5 minutes we get our “Road Warrior T-Shirt” because we travel from abroad. How many bands do something similar and for free and every single date of the tour? Keep on thinking...
9 pm: On time as taxes, the light goes down and the stage is taken by the (not anymore) “dressed in underwear” MANOWAR.
A wall of sound. This would be enough. A very high volume, but clean, incredibly clear. You can distinguish every single instrument; the rhythmic section does not overpower the voice, which is so important in the sound of Manowar. In Italy, a venue that can sustain such volume does not exist, and I keep on thinking.

The band plays the entire album “Battle Hymns” to perfection, while “William’s Tale” was played later by DeMaio only. The title track is truly incredible, your eyes get wet while listening to one of the most intense song of epic metal. The power and the intensity of the songs played live grow to such level that you can only be stunned and impressed.

The band gets a little break while Karl plays his solo ”Sun Of Death”, showing a technique not always so evident in studio. Then the tempo picks up again with “Brothers Of Metal”. The crowd sings every single move and looks from DeMaio and Adams brings the public to a delirium.

The setlist has never been so rich and varied. Needless to point out every song, just keep in mind that every one has been played to perfection, with no break in between for a total of 2 hours and a half (keep thinking about concert lasting 1 hour and 10 minutes, and they charge 40 Euros).

After the “Fighting The World”, the band stops for a second and on stage comes DeMaio alone with the usual beer can in one hand: we all know what he is about to say, this is not the evening for exalting true metal, this is the evening to celebrate a fallen brother. From Valhalla Scott Columbus for sure appreciated the ovation from the crowd and “ Gates Of Valhalla” dedicated to the drummer who passed away on April 4th.

“Heart Of Steel” makes you emotional, but then “The Gods Made Heavy Metal”, “Hail And Kill” and the rest of the songs bring back the spirit of the warrior in all the 3000 people present.
“The Power” closes the official concert, and the encore begins including “Warriors Of The World United” and the classic “Black Wind, Fire & Steel”, noticeably longer in the end, with DeMaio that breaks the strings off the bass and give them away to the fans in the front row.
We miss “Kings Of Metal”, but looking at the set list we are just as happy!

They may be exaggerated, they may be without style, they may be some f*****g hotheads, we accept that. But you will never find a live show like this with any other band. We are talking about an over all look, we know that Iron Maiden fill a stadium, that Judas Priest are the founding Fathers of Metal, that Dream Theatre are some technical genius, but tonight we have witnessed a true Heavy Metal concert, as it should always be played and lived.

Looking at the individual performances, they were all even, but what always amazes is the power of Eric’s voice.
Even being a fan of the band, I would never have imagined coming out from one of their shows so happy and fulfilled. A mystical experience.

I will close now sending a big thank you to my dad, who shared this wonderful experience with me (he is 50 years old!)! He rocks!

“Other Bands Play, Manowar KILLS! ” ... Holy words.

1. Manowar
2. Death Tone
3. Metal Daze
4. Fast Taker
5. Shell Shock
6. Dark Avenger
7. Battle Hymn
8. Sun Of Death (Karl Logan’s Solo)
9. Brother Of Metal Pt.1
10. Blood Of My Enemies
11. Kill With Power
12. Sign Of The Hammer
13. Fighting The World
14. Gates Of Valhalla (in memory of Scott Columbus)
15. Heart Of Steel
16. William’s Tale
17. Metal Warriors
18. The Gods Made Heavy Metal
19. Hail And Kill
20. House Of Death
21. Hand Of Doom
22. The Power
23. Warriors Of The World United
24. Black Wind, Fire and Steel
25. The Crown And The Ring (outro)

Read the original article in Italian here: by Tommaso Dainese

Manowar has enchanted the loyal metal communion many times with registrations of their impressive live shows. By purchasing a number of videos and DVDs one could follow the self-confident band in the living room on its glorious ride to victory through every continent. This year they organized their first festival of their own in Germany. The first edition of Magic Circle Festival was an unforgettable event for all visitors. On the sixth and seventh of July 2007 bands and fans gathered in a place called Bad Arolsen and were witness of a spectacle that solicited openly for a place in the Guinness Book of Records: a stage 40 meters wide and 16 meters deep, thousands of Watts for sound and lighting and besides Manowar, some bands chosen by Manowar to perform.

I started looking at both DVDs on a Saturday night and was so impressed by Manowar’s performance that it happened to be four o’clock in the morning before I went to sleep; softly humming some hymn-like melodies. Indeed, Manowar totally excites you or not, that’s the way it always has been. After watching a number of less well-known bands on the first DVD I am glad that Manowar played many old songs, next to a collection of recent hymns. It is fun to watch ‘Herz Aus Stahl’ before a German crowd and it opens the way to highlights like ‘Army Of The Immortals’, ‘Gates Of Valhalla’, ‘William’s Tale’ and ‘The Crown And The Ring’. While the crowd leaves one can hear ‘Master Of The Wind’ which always wets my eyes. That’s a perfect hymn. I realize that Manowar must be the mother of all Viking bands and they are the roots of my contemporary love for Viking metal.

DVD2 focuses on a concert of Manowar and HolyHell in Bulgaria, but it also includes recordings of any local bands. Here ‘Each Dawn I Die’ and ‘Blood Of My Enemies’ are pure magic. We have lots of bonus material to make you keep watching this unique document. We all know that Manowar never goes for half work. Without any doubt this is a magnificent double DVD. I am looking forward to the second edition of the festival. Manowar will play their first six albums live then. Songs such as ‘Guyana’ and ‘Bridge Of Death’ live… can’t wait and it is too good to be true!

Vera -

Magic Circle Festival Vol. 1
(Double Live DVD)

Magic Circle Festival Vol. 1
(Double Live DVD)

Last year Manowar released a new cd with the epic Gods of War. Of course Manowar wouldn't be Manowar if they didn't do anything big and crazy for their fans to promote the new album. Because they felt that not all of the fans could see them live they organized their own festival (and asked only €10 for a day ticket) which they headlined both friday 6th and saturday 7th of July. Now of course they wouldn't be Manowar if they didn't film the entire festival for DVD. And so at the end of 2007 the official festival DVD of Magic Circle Festival was released through their own label. As I was one of the 25000 people on the festival on saturday I enjoyed reliving the day again through this DVD. Disc 1 shows a compilation of the entire festival with all the bands who played during the two days except for Majesty and Gamma Ray. The smaller bands - Heavenly, Imperia, Saidian, Lions's Share, Mob Rules, David Shankle Group, Messiah's Kiss, Stormwarrior(feat. Kai Hansen) - all get 2 live tracks on the DVD. HolyHell's cover of Phantom of the Opera (feat. Eric Adams) followed by a couple of their own songs end the section of the other bands. Manowar fills the rest of the DVD with songs including classics as Manowar, Brothers of Metal and Kill with Power followed by a couple taken from the new album. Manowar Dvds also contain loads of extra stuff and that is all packed on the second disc of the DVD. The disc is divided into 2 parts. One about the Kaliakra Rock festival in Bulgaria with more live songs by Manowar, HolyHell and the russian hardrock band Sixth Sense and a documentary about this festival. The other part of this disc contains the real extra scenes, including a making of Magic Circle Festival, the speeches given by Joey on stage and some live material of the local bands who opened Magic Circle Festival. Manowar may be making a lot of DVDs but all of them are filled with great live material in superb quality and tons of extras. This DVD is just the same which makes it a must-have for all fans and a nice DVD for all people who enjoy power and heavy metal!

Sammy De Maere -

The Kings of Metal are of course represented for the bigger part en delivers us with fourteen songs, picked from both nights. To be honest I'm a bit surprised that the band didn't put both shows in their entirety on the DVD, seeing that both shows were absolutely phenomenal and would have been a great legacy for the next generation. But then again, part five of the 'Hell On Earth' DVD's is at our doorstep, so we might get to see the shows after all...

...The second disc is divided in two parts. Part one is in the sign of the Manowar's appearance at the Kavarna festival in Bulgaria. This show is represented in (almost) its entirety and makes every Manowar fan that wasn't there burn with envy. The show as well as the set list is brilliant and the crowd goes absolutely berserks. The fact that the band plays a metal version of the Bulgarian National anthem 'Mila Rodino' should not stay unmentioned. The Bulgaria chapter also contains a few songs by HolyHell and also the Russian hardrock act Sixth Sense and a documentary. Part two of this disc is dedicated to an expansive documentary on the Magic Circle Festival and the band brings you behind the scene to revel the secrets and the hard labour of bringing this festival from the ground. Of course then fans mean everything to Manowar and so they get a lot of attention and are expansively represented. This part also contains a few songs by the local acts Black Situation and Mordeen.

In conclusion I can say that this DVD reveals the atmosphere and greatness of this festival. This release is a worthy addition to the collection of the ones that were present at both festivals and is of course essential for every Manowarrior. Director Neil Johnson has again done a tremendous job and both sound and vision are sublime. Manowar has again delivered the (metal) fans with a quality product and there is still much to look forward to: the 'Hell On Earth V' DVD, a new single, a new album and of course the next edition of Magic Circle Festival in July next year. Be there!

Nima -

Magic Circle Festival Vol. 1
(Double Live DVD)

Gods Of War Live
(Double Live CD)

If you already know a bit about Manowar, then you’ll know that they are always raising the bar higher and higher for themselves. This applies to quality, as well. And no effort had been spared when they brought out a very impressive live show CD. They have succeeded now, as well as in the past, in doing so.

‘Gods of War-Live’ excels in pompous and power. That incredibly strong, live feeling that you experience at a Manowar concert has been brought into your living room in a very skilful way. You experience one grand delusion. All the songs were recorded during their ‘Demons, Dragons and Warriors 2007 Tour’ in Germany for the largest number ever of visitors at a Manowar concert. This tour was based on the release of their very successful 10th studio album, ‘Gods of War’. The result is this live recorded and filmed album. The choice of the songs is fairly obvious because they are the choices of the fans themselves. However, there are a few surprises. For example, this is the very first time that “Mountains” has been performed live and to the approval of the fans.

‘Gods of War-Live’ has fulfilled the wishes of the fans. Joey DiMaio and his companions wanted to bestow a precious and memorable gift on their fans and have done so with this ‘Demons, Dragons and Warriors 2007 Tour’. This excellent live album is a complete success.

Jany -

Recorded during their "Demons, Dragons and Warriors World Tour 2007"; Gods Of War Live captures Manowar in the best possible manner and that is on the concert stage in front of tens of thousands of screaming Metal heads. This would be the bands third live release and while it focused on material from their later years they would still manage to fit in the venerated classics to the delight of the raging audience. To the Metal fans around the world, Manowar in concert is more than just a show with the incredible lights and epic Metal music - it is instead a highly anticipated event and hallowed day in celebration of the band that practically started the Sword & Sorcery aspect of the genre. When Manowar comes to town their legions unite in common cause and together raise their horns for the glory and honor of Metal music. The first CD opens with the bands staple intro "Manowar" – a song that reminds the audience of their beginnings and their never ending quest for Metal. The song selection presented on the album is actually the entire performed set from the tour so there is a lot to enjoy from beginning to end. Some of my own favorites were set on "Holy War" since it was such a pounding piece and "Mountains" based on the rich heaviness and mood laid out in its live version. I just seemed to like it better here than on the original studio recording. We get the bass expertise of DeMaio during "Son Of William's Tale" and it's always a treat to hear just how good a bassist he is.

Ken Pierce -

Gods Of War Live
(Double Live CD)

Gods Of War Live
(Double Live CD)

You’ve had the album. You’ve had the tour. Now witness the full power of Manowar live in this double live CD that perfectly captures through its 22 tracks the recent Demons, Dragons and Warriors world tour. Superbly packaged with a generous foto booklet as we’ve come to expect from Magic Circle, there’s full coverage of Manowar’s extensive discography ranging from ‘Gloves Of Metal’ to ‘The Oath’ to ‘Kings Of Metal’ to ‘Army Of The Dead’. Initially I felt that there were too many symphonic pieces and overdoing on the viking theme pieces. However, upon reflection the 2 CDs effectively capture in its entirety a typical Manowar show. So if you missed the tour (like I did thanks to the band rescheduling it right in the middle of my damn holiday!) then this one’s for you!

Shan Siva -

Haaa, Manowar... This is simply the perfect word to symbolize the beers, the girls, the swords (and other lethal weapons), the leather, the Metal and of course… the live performances. The last official live album of the American combo was released in 1999, even if the fans got a lot of DVD until today but I think that after a so long break, it was a good idea to release a new live and if you like Manowar, I can tell you that you'll not be disappointed… For sure, you didn't wait for nothing.

Jeff -

Gods Of War Live
(Double Live CD)