Eastpak Antidote Tour 2007
Soilwork, Dark Tranquillity, Caliban, Sonic Syndicate
The Cockpit, Leeds, UK

I’ve been waiting in agony for years for this moment to come; the day that I’d see the great Soilwork in a live performance. Tuesday 2nd October 2007 meant to be one of the most exciting days of my life putting an end to this agony. Soilwork were in town along with their pals – the glorious Dark Tranquillity – and also two relatively new bands, Caliban and Sonic Syndicate.

Doors were to open at 18.00 with Sonic Syndicate being the opening act of this mini festival. Unfortunately, my extremely busy schedule on that day did not allow me to be there on time and therefore I missed Sonic Syndicate’s performance. I was, however, right on time for Caliban.

And there you have it. Caliban are off stage and suddenly things get moving in the arena. The crowd gathers at the front and six dudes with traditional, old school, metal outlooks appear on stage. The Swedish force in all its glory. The law of the North! Dark Tranquillity did not have to try at all to keep the crowd interested. People were dieing for this moment to come. The proper metal riffs, the guitar harmonies and the death/goth atmosphere instantly mesmerised us, we all felt it in our skins. The tension of excitement was evident with the Swedish veterans delivering their set so comfortably and effortlessly that actually left me speechless. Focusing mainly on their last three albums, Dark Tranquillity had an astonishing performance and excellent sound. They are an established metal machine after all.

The clock shows 21.30, my excitement levels hit red and adrenaline atoms are racing in my veins. I can feel my heart pounding because I know that the great moment has come. I see Daniel (Soilwork guitarist) standing at the rear of the stage giving a sneaky look at the crowd and I start losing my temper. Soon enough Dark Tranquillity say their last goodbye, we cordially throw a big thank you back at them for their momentous performance and the lights are off. The stage is ready to accommodate the enormous Soilwork.

I can now hear the keyboard loops, steam covers the whole place and the gigantic rhythm section of the Swedish metal pioneers shatters our pints of lager. And the party has just begun! Seriously, I can’t describe you the experience, you have to see it to believe it. ‘Rejection Role’, ‘Light the Torch’, ‘Weapon of Vanity’, ‘The Distance’ and so on…. the back of my neck hurts but I can’t help it! Soilwork unleashed the beast and we are all in trance. Just before the end of their set they give us an exclusive treat playing the stunning ‘Exile’ from their new album, and brought their performance to a close with the monumental ‘Nerve’. An unforgettable night, a worthwhile experience, a band that actively contributes to the history of our favourite music, and above all, Soilwork are down to earth, nice and approachable, far from any stardom arrogant attitude.

Wow! What a fantastic mini festival. How ironic though! We needed the cold white Scandinavian spirit to warm us up!

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