Epica @ The Studio, Auckland, New Zealand 16/3 -16

So! Once I got back, I got myself ready for the show and headed off. At first, I had planned to take the bus, but then I realized that it was really only a 30 minute walk right up Queen’s Street, I decided to walk instead.

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Once at the venue, me and a few other Epica fans learned that entrance would be on the other side of the venue, so it was just to make your way around. First thing I did was to get myself a bottle water. Destroyed by the European standards, or Nordic perhaps, I was certain they’d check your bag so I didn’t bring my own waterbottle. Jokes on me, I guess.

Checked out the non-existing merchtable before placing myself on the middle of the floor. It’s a small venue – a club, more exactly. It’s weird – I saw Epica on the Mainstage at Graspop this summer, and now I’m seeing them in a half-full club. So odd.

Supporters for the evening where the Australian band Voyager, out of Perth, to be more exact. They started right on time at 19.30 as they were supposed to, and I really liked their band I must say! They delievered a really good set, though the audience was a wee bit lame, but I guess that happens!

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In between the sets, I decided to make my way by the merchandise and pick up one of Voyagers albums. I might have to pick up the other one in Brisbane, I really liked their stuff!

Right on time, “Originem” started with the band going on stage, opening the set with “The Second Stone”. The crowd was recieving well and the band was, despite jetlag, on top! They continued on with “The Essance of Silence” and then “Sensorium”.

The crowd was good. It’s not the European crowds, I must admit, not too much action going on, but I guess it’s different. And if you’ve been waiting for 15 years to see this band, it might take you a bit by surprise.

“Unleashed” follow, which made the crowd very pleased, and they followed that one up with “Martyr of the Free Word”. This was followed by “Cry For The Moon” with a drumsolo on top of that! They held up really good energy and delivered flawlessly.

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“Storm The Sorrow” was next in line, followed by “The Obsessive Devotion”. For this song, the guys specifically asked for headbanging and circle pits, and much to my dismay… nothing happened. There were a few cool guys who actually did shit where I stood, but not a lot. I almost started to wonder if New Zealanders know how to do a proper circle pit.

Next in line, “Victims of Contingency” followed by my personal favorite “Unchain Utopia” and seriously. This song is so fucking massive live, I’m almost dying from the awesomeness of it.

Simone started talking about following your dreams before they wrapped up the set with “Design Your Universe”. The band left the stage, only to come back moments later and ripping off two encores – “Sancta Terra” and then “Consign to Oblivion”.

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I must just say something here. Somewhere around “Unchain Utopia” I started feeling really ill. I wasn’t sure why and how, and at first I thought it was simply bad food… until I realized that once I stopped to listen to the bandmembers talking, that I got better, but as soon as I started moving my head, I fell ill again. What I am saying, is that I have reached the point where headbanging makes me motion ill. Good riddance on me, I need to start taking motion illness pills before metal shows now.

But, all that aside, I was really happy, in “Consign”, to see that these people do in fact know how to do a proper Wall of Death, as well as a circle pit. Good on you guys, good on your for proving me wrong. With all of this, the band thanked for the night and left the stage for good.

It was a really good show. Like, REALLY. I enjoyed it so much, despite the illness. After the show, I met up with the two guys who gave this show a go – Jhonethon and Dan, from Christchurch to be more exact. It was really good to meet new Epica fans, and making some friends down underx2! It was nice meeting you guys, can’t wait to see you again!

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After this, I went back to the hotel, picking up some McDonalds on my way and then I crashed in bed after an amazing night.

Thank you, Epica for this night, I’m looking more forward to Brisbane than ever!

// Sara

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