Author: Davor Bijelic
After four long years, Croatian fans were given a new chance to see Apocalyptica live on stage in Tvornica Kulture, a well-known club for both sides, the band and the audience. With the release of their latest album “Shadowmaker” and as a part of their Shadowmaker European tour, Apocalyptica presented Franky Perez, a new singer who had a mission to expand group’s already intricate sonic stories. Although the band doesn’t need a vocalist, choosing such a vocak as Franky Perez’s made Apocalyptica a progressive melodic band, which changed their original sound and appearance.
The new album is a collection of dramatic and dark songs that show that the new face of Apocalyptica has obviously evolved from symphonic metal beginnings to the world music stage. Apocalyptica have found a way to continually reinvent themselves while keeping the essence of what made them so popular over the last few decades.
“Shadowmaker” is Apocalyptica’s eighth studio album and a new course in their development. Apocalyptica used an incredible power of their orchestral and symphonic style as well as their classical background to make this concert and probably the whole tour different than the previous ones, and to create the atmosphere that most fans will never forget. Everything about “Shadowmaker” is a precise technical composition and attention to details, and everything on this tour was chosen with purpose. We can start with the end of the concert that was in a “patriotic” tone after Apocalyptica performed the Croatian national anthem that was, of course, carefully planned, but still a nice gesture that made this concert unique and different for the Croatian audience.
The show was based on promoting their new album, and the band mostly performed their original songs such as “Cold Blood”, which features an upbeat swing with the band’s trademark symphonic tones backed by melodic vocals from their new singer, and “Shadowmaker”, which highlights the band’s classical background based on string instruments. “Slow Burn” is Apocalyptica at their best, with dark, emotional lyrics that resonate with the listener on another level, and this song brings them to their original sound. When listening to their last album, it is obvious that each song has its intro and style, but on a few occasions during their live performance, it was quite hard to distinguish one song from the other. However, this was not the case when the band played cover songs (“Enter Sandman, Master of Puppets and Seek and Destroy” from Metallica and “Inquisition Symphony” from Sepultura). The Croatian audience knows these tunes quite well and sang with the band the entire time.
To conclude this short report, it was nice to see Apocalyptica again as well as the huge Croatian crowd, who decided to support the show despite heavy rain. “Shadowmaker” is a different album and an entirely new project that includes a regular singer for the very first time in Apocalyptica’s career. Franky Perez has a powerful voice and even though he isn’t the most charismatic and impressive singer, his continuous vocal presence during the show adds a coherent flow, which combined with experienced cello riffs created a mysterious atmosphere characteristic for Apocalyptica.