Dragonforce & Power Quest at Electric Ballroom, London - live review

Epic metal lunatics prove their staying power

Art for Dragonforce & Power Quest live at Electric Ballroom, London

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Tonight’s banquet of silliness begins with POWER QUEST [6] delivering 45 minutes of – surprise! – pompous power metal. New frontman Ashley Edison is electric, essentially a TOWIE extra who’s really into roleplay. Dragonforce and ex-PQ axeman/beer-guzzler Sam Totman joins in for a ridiculous rendition of Far Away, pinching Ashley’s balls to reach that elusive high note. And then DRAGONFORCE’s [7] two-hour setlist arrives. Operation Ground And Pound two songs in? Behave – it sounds perfect. Herman Li and Sam bounce solos off one another, synchronising oh-so-wacky jumps from the riser alongside seemingly random jets of dry ice. Marc Hudson stays in his lane, more comfortable as the frontman than ever but acutely aware that no, people aren’t turning up for the vocals. That said, his growls in The Edge Of The World sit alongside his power metal wailing quite nicely. As a unit, they’re ludicrously entertaining, the technical dexterity still mental as ever. So it’s irritating when Sam and Herman leave for 15 minutes, the remaining members delivering a guitar solo, drum solo and some Nintendo tunes. Oh, Herman’s changed his shirt. Tonight could’ve been spectacular, but due to the aforementioned fiddling about, shit stage banter – Sam’s hoping to ‘Dragonscore’ tonight, geddit? – and Cry Thunder’s crowd participation lasting approximately 17 hours, it ends up just being good. Still, finishing with a cover of Ring Of Fire and Through The Fire And Flames? Decent.

Alec Chillingworth

Alec is a longtime contributor with first-class BA Honours in English with Creative Writing, and has worked for Metal Hammer since 2014. Over the years, he's written for Noisey, Stereoboard, uDiscoverMusic, and the good ship Hammer, interviewing major bands like Slipknot, Rammstein, and Tenacious D (plus some black metal bands your cool uncle might know). He's read Ulysses thrice, and it got worse each time.