Amon Amarth and Bleed From Within bring a Viking Invasion to Historic Halls

A Viking Invasion hit the newly refurbished The Halls in Wolverhampton during their reopening month. A comprehensive refurbishment revitalised its interior and exterior, and the historic venue now boasts modern amenities, improved acoustics, and state-of-the-art facilities. Amon Amarth and Bleed From Within pushed the acoustics wonderfully.

Amon Amarth – Bleed From Within

Civic Hall, Wolverhampton – 14 June 2023

Words and Photography: Andy Shaw

Bleed From Within

Bleed From Within - Civic Hall, Wolverhampton - 14 June 2023
Bleed From Within – Civic Hall, Wolverhampton – 14 June 2023. Photo: Andy Shaw/MetalTalk

From Glasgow, Bleed From Within gave an explosive performance tonight, opening up proceedings with a set made up of tracks from their last two albums. They kicked off with a trilogy from their latest album Shrine – Stand Down, Sovereign and Levitate – and their stall was set.

Bleed From Within - Civic Hall, Wolverhampton - 14 June 2023
Bleed From Within – Civic Hall, Wolverhampton – 14 June 2023. Photo: Andy Shaw/MetalTalk

Frontman Scott Kennedy is a dynamic presence. His vocals are brilliant and deliver the songs with the power and ferocity their Metalcore sound deserves.

Bleed From Within - Civic Hall, Wolverhampton - 14 June 2023
Bleed From Within – Civic Hall, Wolverhampton – 14 June 2023. Photo: Andy Shaw/MetalTalk

Next is Into Nothing, which really shows off the dexterity of lead guitarist Craig Cowans coupled with rhythm guitarist Steven Jones and his clean vocals, which perfectly complement Kennedy.

Bleed From Within - Civic Hall, Wolverhampton - 14 June 2023
Bleed From Within – Civic Hall, Wolverhampton – 14 June 2023. Photo: Andy Shaw/MetalTalk

Next, we have a couple more from Shrine – Flesh And Stone and I Am Damnation – which keep the intensity going. By now, a massive circle pit had formed, and The Halls crowd were loving it.

Bleed From Within - Civic Hall, Wolverhampton - 14 June 2023
Bleed From Within – Civic Hall, Wolverhampton – 14 June 2023. Photo: Andy Shaw/MetalTalk

Finishing with the brilliant The End Of All We Know, this combination of stunning melodies and crashing vocals was a fantastic way to end the set.

Amon Amarth

Amon Amarth - Civic Hall, Wolverhampton - 14 June 2023
Amon Amarth – Civic Hall, Wolverhampton – 14 June 2023. Photo: Andy Shaw/MetalTalk

Then it was time for the legendary Swedish Melodic Death Metal band with more than a hint of Viking, Amon Amarth. As the curtain dropped, revealing a set comprising a couple of giant Viking Warriors, there was a rustic feel to the rest of the stage.

Amon Amarth - Civic Hall, Wolverhampton - 14 June 2023
Amon Amarth – Civic Hall, Wolverhampton – 14 June 2023. Photo: Andy Shaw/MetalTalk

With the drum riser above a giant Viking helmet, we were met with the giant presence of frontman Johan Hegg. The band came on behind him, and we were straight into Guardians Of Asgaard from their 2008 Twilight Of The Thunder God album.

Amon Amarth - Civic Hall, Wolverhampton - 14 June 2023
Amon Amarth – Civic Hall, Wolverhampton – 14 June 2023. Photo: Andy Shaw/MetalTalk

Next was Raven’s Flight, followed by the title track of their latest album, The Great Heathen Army. Hegg was in full flow, his rasping vocals pounding the newly refurbished The Halls.

We had a couple of Viking Warriors on stage too. To a man, woman and child, the crowd were in full flow, copying all the instructions from Hegg. We had a couple of Viking Warriors on stage too.

Amon Amarth - Civic Hall, Wolverhampton - 14 June 2023
Amon Amarth – Civic Hall, Wolverhampton – 14 June 2023. Photo: Andy Shaw/MetalTalk

War Of The Gods was next, with Ted Lundström, bass, and guitarists Olavi Mikkonen and Johan Söderberg constantly moving and prowling the stage and providing the pounding beats to keep the crowd moving.

“Hello, Wolverhampton. It’s been a long time since we were here,” Hegg said. “Let’s not waste our time together.” Next was the new song Heidrun followed by Death In Fire, then The Pursuit Of Vikings.

Amon Amarth - Civic Hall, Wolverhampton - 14 June 2023
Amon Amarth – Civic Hall, Wolverhampton – 14 June 2023. Photo: Andy Shaw/MetalTalk

The circle pit was getting bigger and was a combination of jumping, moshing and dancing around to the Viking Beats. “We have come through bad times,” Hegg said, “so let’s not dwell on it. Let’s Find A Way Or Make One,” and they were straight into that track.

Amon Amarth - Civic Hall, Wolverhampton - 14 June 2023
Amon Amarth – Civic Hall, Wolverhampton – 14 June 2023. Photo: Andy Shaw/MetalTalk

After this, the band walked off the stage and the sound of water and boats being rowed filled the room. This was the queue for the crowd to sit down and row.

Put Your Back Into The Oar was the time for the audience to row their long boats. A stunning sight to see a couple of thousand people moving as one back and forth. The atmosphere in the room was at a fever pitch.

Amon Amarth - Civic Hall, Wolverhampton - 14 June 2023
Amon Amarth – Civic Hall, Wolverhampton – 14 June 2023. Photo: Andy Shaw/MetalTalk

The run of Destroyer of the Universe, The Way Of Vikings, The Berserker At Stamford Bridge and First Kill was epic, and the band left the stage.

Closing with Shield Wall, Raise Your Horns and a blockbusting version of Twilight Of The Thunder God, this was a joyous night of music provided by one of the world’s best live bands. Hail, Hail Amon Amarth!!

Amon Amarth - Civic Hall, Wolverhampton - 14 June 2023
Amon Amarth – Civic Hall, Wolverhampton – 14 June 2023. Photo: Andy Shaw/MetalTalk
Amon Amarth - Civic Hall, Wolverhampton - 14 June 2023
Amon Amarth – Civic Hall, Wolverhampton – 14 June 2023. Photo: Andy Shaw/MetalTalk

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