Kerrang! (UK) - - Lives - JAMES HINGLE

LIKE A set from Amer­i­can Hor­ror Story, Swedish metallers Avatar tonight have the most messed-up cir­cus act in all of London. At face value, the il­lu­mi­nated podium, the creepy-look­ing lights and the jester paint job smacked across front­man Jo­hannes Eck­er­ström’s face are al­most as silly as Don­ald Trump’s wig.

Al­most… How­ever, once you’re brought into their freak show, it’s safe to say that this is a metal gig that has been per­fectly crafted to ri­val KISS in the en­ter­tain­ment stakes. But be­fore that, mak­ing their UK de­but are fel­low Swedes The Last Band, whose Can­cer-batsmeets-in-flames ragers loudly crash into the au­di­ence. But then Avatar tum­ble on­stage.“i don’t know if it’s the fish and chips or the shep­herd’s pie, but it Smells Like A Freak­show!” ex­claims the ever-ju­bi­lant Jo­hannes, as he leads pro­ceed­ings with the charm of an old-school ring­mas­ter. The rest of the band, mean­while, should win the world’s first-ever Syn­chro­nized Hair-swoosh­ing Cham­pi­onship, as they head­bang per­fectly in time to one an­other over their Sa­tanic riffs. It’s all de­light­fully over the top, and The Ea­gle Has Landed from in­ven­tive new al­bum Feath­ers & Flesh is per­formed with all the the­atrics you would ex­pect. If you’re one of those peo­ple that think metal has lost a lit­tle bit of its fun side, then Avatar are the band whose Big Top you’ll want to step into very soon.

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