Hitting the stage next was supposed to be retro-metal crew Holy Grail, but apparently their bus broke down and saved me the pain of suffering through their set. Not only do I dislike their music, but I have a grudge against the vocalist for an encounter that occurred when I saw the band open for Exodus last year. Enter 3 Inches of Blood, who one could say were doing the retro-metal thing before it was cool. They released their first full-length in 2002, but hit more fame with their 2004 Roadrunner Records album Advance and Vanquish. and evem had what I’d call a metal “hit” with their song “Deadly Sinners.” I never liked the band enough to catch them headline a set, which they’ve done in Utah plenty of times, but they did a great job a cranking out the metal. The band has two vocalists, one utilizing harsh, growled vocals and the using falsetto screams—like King Diamond falsetto high. I say if you can do it and pull it off, do it. Needless to say I enjoyed the band’s set, but I wouldn’t pay money to see them headline a show unless the package had bands I enjoyed on it.
I first encountered Eluveitie about four years ago when their album Slania came out. I enjoyed their records to an extent, but found my folk/Celtic metal fixes from other bands. I think Eluveite got the short end of the stick in regards to their sound offering in the live setting that night. One issue is they had to stack seven members (by my count) on the tiny stage, which didn’t give some of the members sufficient rocking out space. Also just an educated guess here I, (but I could be wrong since they’re doing an overseas tour) but they had no amps or gear of their own on the stage. My pure assumption was that all of their sound was coming from the venue’s sound system, which to my ears—wounded as they may be from too many loud concerts—muffled the bagpipes, flutes, violin and mandolin that Eluveite incorporated into their set. The folk/Celtic appeal that the band has became a bit lost in the mix, but the band played recognizable songs. The crowd was constantly worked up by Eluveitie’s energetic frontman Christian “Chrigel” Glanzmann, who not only played multiple instruments but also got the crowd (most of which didn’t know the lyrics) to chant along with the melody. My opinion here really is moot—my wife likes the band and so did probably the vast majority of people at the venue. When you’re seeing a band you love live, sound quality has a way of not affecting your opinion as much and still lets you have fun. If you’re into Eluveite a great deal and you went to the show, you had a blast If you missed it, you may have missed the band’s only performance in Utah, but the people with bags of merch leaving the venue as well as plenty of smiling faces might influence Eluveite to return to Utah. I don’t think there was a dissatisfied customer in the house.