Eluveitie and friends

Schlachthof and 60/40 (from its website)

One of the last double headliner tours 2022 led us to the visit of Eluveitie and their friends of Amorphis, Dark Tranquillity and Nailed To Obscurity at Wiesbaden’s Schlachthof on 14th of December. It is a very well-known venue with a perfect capacity of about 2200-2400 spectators for this tour. It is easy to reach by car and train with motorway and railway station nearby. The restaurant 60/40 completes the whole package of your visit.

Frisian Early Birds

The first band of the, I hesitate to call it “evening”, more or less a “late afternoon” is Nailed To Obscurity. Sadly, the four East Frisians are not Nailed to Obscurity so their slot already starts at 18:05. I’ve seen them several times over the last couple of years, either as support band of bigger names, or on festivals. But I have never seen them perform as well as today! Nailed to Obscurity have a slot of little more than 30-35 minutes and their songs are quite long so their set consists only of five or six songs. Gone are the times of The Ramones’ songs barely longer than two minutes. Complex Melodic-Death-Doom-Metal rules.

Jump and Run for more than 30 Years

It takes only a short while until Dark Tranquillity enter the stage – the band simply shares drum-kit and stage set-up with the first one. The slot of Dark Tranquillity is about 15 minutes longer, the songs are shorter and there are more of them. It is difficult to follow the musicians, string players and singer are quite agile and mobile on stage. For more than 30 years the Swedish Melodic-Death-Metal musicians have been used to jumping and running from left to right, back to front and visa-versa in seconds. Only drums and keyboards are a little bit more static for obvious reasons. As the first one it is again a very convincing show of a band which simply is hungry for heaven, the heaven of live shows.

Combining Genres

The closer of the meanwhile indeed late evening is Finnish Amorphis. After a complete change of stage set-up their show starts short before 22:00 which is quite a good time for a headliner. We have already reported in detail about their show in  Berlin a few days earlier so I don’t need to repeat what has already been written. Nevertheless, they did well, very well! Amorphis showed the audience what real live music is all about. Amorphis is one of those bands who can jump from genre to genre with ease, who even combines these genres. So no matter if it is earlier Death-Metal, Prog Metal or a song influenced by traditional Finnish elements, Amorphis make it their very special and unique song.


Some Nerdy Stuff First

By now you probably might have noticed that I left out one band. Yes, sure! I have been trying to create some tension. It is up to you, dear readers, to decide if it worked or not. The missing band is none less than Swiss Eluveitie. First some boring side facts, the name of the band comes from graffiti on an ancient vessel found in Mantua/Italy. The inscription in Etruscan letters reads “eluveitie”, which might presumably refer to a Helvetian living in Mantua. Most of you should know and hopefully love their mix of melodic death metal and Celtic music. Besides the usual metal instruments Eluveitie make wide use of ancient instruments, including hurdy-gurdy, flutes, harps and bagpipes. They come with harsh vocals by Christian “Chrigel” Glanzmann and clean vocals by Fabienne Erni. Some of you might also know her side-project Illumishade but that’s a different story still to be written.

About Sound

In the past Eluveitie had the reputation of providing an excellent and complex sound on studio recordings but having problems to find the right settings during live shows so the one or the other instrument remained unheard or was overdriven. These are challenges unknown to a four-piece punk combo but hell of a battle for a nine-piece multi-instrumental Folk Metal band. For quite while this seems to be problem of the past. I am curious what I will experience this time. And I am curious about Eluveitie’s latest member Annie Hurdy Gurdy. Guess what instrument she plays…

Back from the “Exile Of Gods” 

I can’t remember the exact time when the first headliner Eluveitie enters the stage, probably around 20:00. I do remember, it is the first of two complete set-up changes so it took longer than before. Nine musicians with all their selection of instruments need space… Then we are ready for the first of the two headliners. It is always somewhat risky to open a show with a new song but not this time. Eluveitie open with their new single “Exile Of Gods” sung by Fabienne. I must admit, an opener to my taste. It is unbelievable how powerful Fabienne’s vocals are, how dainty she is. In many ways she reminds me of Pat Benatar in the early 80ies though the music is completely different. The second song is much rougher but – just as good – Chrigel takes over for “Nil” and – more on the melodic side –  “Deathwalker”.

Solos and Lifestyle

All in all eight brilliant songs follow, by both excellent singers and outstanding performances by the whole band, including drum and guitar solos. Solos have become quite rare for quite a while for whatever reasons. In the old days of “Sex,-Drugs-and-Rock-‘n’-Roll” solos were often implemented to give the other musicians some time to take a breath and do whatever they thought necessary to make it through the show and tour. With so many straight-edge vegetarians and vegans among our most beloved musicians it is a minor problem nowadays. Anyways I like musicians having the stage and spotlight to themselves for a few minutes to prove their individual skills, especially in such a multi-instrumental band as Eluveitie. Violin, hurdy-gurdy, flutes and harp already have most of the attention so it sounds more than fair to me to let the others have their share.

Rougher but Clear

Speaking of sound, neither sound-engineer, nor band on stage disappoint. We can hear every single instrument loud and clear, even the tiny tin whistle. I am more than convinced by Annie. She is great on the hurdy-gurdy, Michalina Malisz’ former shoes fit perfectly. The generally good acoustic of Schlachthof might be helpful too. There is no overdriving anywhere at any place of the venue. Eluveitie have once again improved their live sound to perfection, rougher than on studio recordings but still perfect. This is how live music should sound – different but not worse than on record. Just like a tiger and a lion, both are quite big cats and kind of cousins but still two different animals.

We want more

I drift away, stupid me… After about 50 minutes Chrigel announces “the last song” which makes less than an hour altogether. Is he kidding? Is it a bad joke? Aren’t they supposed to be one of two headliners with much more play time than the support bands? Now that would be a disappointment. Is it really true that they have a reduced slot only? No it isn’t. After a short energetic call for encores Eluveitie come back on stage. “Aidus” opens the set of three more songs. “Ategnatos” follows and of course “Inis Mona” is the final closer. Eluveitie deliver what the masses want, not Manna but pure live feeling, perfect sound and a great performance. The audience delivers what Eluveitie want, being back on stage and celebrating a party with their friends, followers, fans and supporters.

The Truth and Hard Facts

Chrigel speaks it out more often than once, that this is what they are here for what we are here for.  For too long, far, far too long both of us, bands and audience have been waiting for these unique experiences. Let us hope that next year will become even better. There still are bands who have to cancel shows or even entire tours. The financial pressure is high, the costs are higher and the risk of a not nearly sold-out tour is highest. Whenever you have some money left over, support your favourite bands, buy a CD or some merch on a concert. One t-shirt sold pays more than those millions of clicks on Spotify and Co. And when you are lucky, your artist even thanks you personally and signs it at the merch table. By the way, whilst in Berlin the merch stalls of the two support bands were separated from the headliners’ stalls, at Schlachthof they shared one long desk equally as one community of friends touring together.

Save the date

Eluveitie will go on North America Tour together with Omnium Gatherum and Seven Spires in March 2023. These are the dates:


Please buy merch and physical music or downloads  from the bands official sources and don’t stream music for free because it steals your artists’ income.

Visit the bands online to find their merch & music to support them, check out upcoming shows of the venue:



Dark Tranquillity   

Nailed To Obscurity

Schlachthof Wiesbaden

Proof reading by DermimBoad

Additional input by Muumi-Katja

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