by Sagiv Shaniv
It is the third time in four years that SABATON are parking their war machine in Tel Aviv; Only this time it was a very special visit of theirs’, with record-breaking affection the crowd showed them whether if it’s in the traditional pre-concert signing session in the local metalshop, news about their visit here before the show spreading live throughout the internet, or during the concert itself in which you solemnly think for yourself that perhaps the crowd is actually louder than the band…
SABATON released their latest album “Carolus Rex” in May 23rd 2012; It gained great success, and was supported by the world wide Swedish Empire Tour 2012, from which the show was a part of.
The opening act were no other than DESERT, a local dark power metal act who are very close (personally and musically) to SABATON and opened for them on their previous visit in Israel as well. During the show a special surprise Desert had promised was fulfilled, when Joakim Broden (Sabaton’s vocalist) came onstage to sing a duet with Desert’s frontman Alexei Raymer on the song “Lament for soldier’s glory”, just like in the original recording. That was a great warm up for the main show of the evening, and Desert made their best to make the crowd bang their heads in the power metal constant rhythm.
Between Desert and Sabaton there was an interval of about 20 minutes that was ended by the song “The Final Countdown” by the Swedish hard rock band Europe. The crowd sang along with the recording with occasional feelings of “What the hell”… all until there was complete silence. A minute later, Sabaton stormed the stage and just like in their 2010 show in Israel, started playing the powerful song Ghost Division, getting the crowd into total ecstasy that lasted for an hour and a half. The show went on and on with the well-known to the crowd hits the band writes so well. The show was a one long high point, spiced up with some talking of Joakim and odd reactions of the crowd to the band (Who throws a teddy bear onstage? Dudes…).
It’s hard for me to pick the song I enjoyed the most in the evening, but I’ll go for 40:1. I think it’s the second song of theirs I heard, and a superb one in my opinion since. I’ve got nothing bad to say about the concert; the sound was sharp and bright, the playlist was diverse covering their most popular material and the crowd was simply AWESOME. I hope they’ll come back a few years from now for the fourth time, perhaps with some more bands for some sort of a mini-fest… Who knows what tomorrow will bring!
Setlist: (by Setlist.fm)
(The Final Countdown – Europe song)
The March To War
Gott Mit Uns
Cliffs of Gallipoli
Dominium Maris Baltici
The Lion From the North
The Price of a Mile
Into the Fire
The Art of War
Dead Soldier’s Waltz
Masters of the World
Ghost Division + Uprising
Panzer Battalion + Primo Victoria
Joakim speaks to the crowd Before Counterstrike