It’s always a treat to have seasoned touring acts swing through the Motor City. Located conveniently between Toronto and Chicago, it’s fairly often that Detroit gets left off the routing for a litany of reasons. Thankfully, symphonic metal stalwarts Lacuna Coil and Apocalyptica took the opportunity to stop in Midtown at the fantastic Majestic Theater on the Cell-O Tour. It seemed pretty well attended even from the outset, rolling up to the venue reasonably close to the onstage time for Lacuna Coil to kick off the evening’s festivities.
Ripping right into their set with “Blood, Tears, Dust,” Lacuna Coil easily asserted themselves as one of the pillars of the symphonic metal subgenre. Watching Cristina Scabbia and Andrea Ferro duel with vocals is always something to behold; they’re both entirely in their element on stage, utterly confident in their roles, and justifiably earned with their more than 20 years in the business. Picking a setlist with such a back catalog is always a challenge; thankfully, the band put together a balanced setlist, featuring five songs from their latest, “Black Anima,” and then a smattering of tracks from their extensive discography. I can say personally that I’m extremely happy that they chose to close things out with “Our Truth,” which is the song that got me into these wonderful Italians back in 2007, and judging by the crowd’s reaction, many of them shared the same thoughts as I!
After a quick changeover and soundcheck, Finnish cello masters Apocalyptica took the stage. Blowing right into “Ashes of the Modern World” from their latest record, “Cell-0,” the crowd could hardly contain their excitement! The folks onstage had a hard time doing so. To be frank – the joy from the Finns at being able to present their latest work to an actual audience in person – in the real world – was utterly palpable, and the audience was definitely present for it! Joining Apocalyptica onstage for vocals was the talented Franky Perez, whose voice is an uncanny fit for the edginess of their music.
If you were to describe the band to someone unengaged with the world of metal, it might seem rather clunky; however, the reality couldn’t be any farther from the truth! Each and every member has a fantastic stage presence – headbanging and flying hair abounds! The audience was quite diverse, with quite a range of ages there! This only makes me wish that they would have brought along any of a number of up-and-coming bands as support along with the tour package; for metal to continue to grow and develop, showing long-standing audiences new acts and new fans bands that have been around the block once or twice needs to happen.
One of Apocalyptica’s claims to fame is their Metallica covers, and of course – they delivered, with covers of “Nothing Else Matters” and “Seek & Destroy.” Wrapping things up with “In the Hall of the Mountain King,” things were over almost too soon. During their farewell talk, it was mentioned that they would be back “very soon,” and it became apparent what was meant by this; a second leg of the US tour had already been announced in the fall! Don’t miss your second chance to catch these elusive (and incredibly enjoyable to watch) Finns on tour then!