Avatar – Hellzapoppin Circus Sideshow – The Brains : Live At Bottom Lounge

The Avatar Freak show graces Chicago with the presence of “The King”. All hail Avatar Country! Avatar out on tour (since the beginning of the year) in support of their 7th studio album Avatar Country (eOne) ripped through the Bottom Lounge in Chicago, IL with an over the top theatrical metal freak show.

Avatar, formed in 2001 hail from Gothenburg, Sweden, a high performing metal band bringing in your face stage theatrics, that blend in perfectly with their musical heavy style. The theme on this night is all in support of their new release Avatar Country, which is a tribute to their king (portrayed by guitarist Jonas Jarlsby). Where the King promises to uphold and defend heavy metal while keeping his style a fierce existence.

The house lights fade against the Nobel curtains. The anticipation of the crowd surmounts as fans make “Dio” horns and large dog puppet silhouettes against the large stage length curtain. ‘Glory To Our King’ begins to play and the curtain falls revealing our “King” (Jarlsby) sitting on his throne in front of drummer John Alfredsson. Dressed in his illustrious deep rich cloak and gold crown The King unveils his axe and shreds right into, “Legend of the King” as the in your face, Avatar extravaganza erupts right before our eyes. Singer Johannes Eckerström looming side stage emerges as the ringleader of this Avatar freak show and continues on with “Let It Burn,” and “Paint Me Red”. The crowd was pumping their fists in the air, as the entire venue was a radiance of red.

Avatar brings well-balanced heavy metal music sound; mixed perfectly with a theatrical show that is undeniably a fun experience. At the core of what Avatar may appear they keep their music a true representation of where they came from in the very beginning.

Hellzapoppin Circus Sideshow started the evening off with a jaw-dropping, awe-inspiring, mind-blowing set of sideshow acts. Which consisted of dark magic, sword swallowing, walking on glass, etc. More than apropos for an Avatar Metal show.

The Brains, the Montreal based, 3 piece rockabilly “Psychobilly” group, provided a fast-paced, heavy “Psychobilly” highly energetic set, which proved to be a perfect match for this night

Avatar set list:
1. Glory To Our King
2. Legend of the King
3. Let It Burn
4. Paint Me Red
5. King’s Harvest
6. Bloody Angel
7. For the Swarm
8. The King Wants You
9. Puppet Show
10. Tower
11. The Eagle Has Landed
12. War Song
13. Raven Wine
14. Reload
15. Smells Like a Freakshow
16. A Statue of the King
17. The King Welcomes You To Avatar Country
18. Hail the Apocalypse

WORDS AND PHOTOS BY RICK TRIANA