Chuck Schuldiner Project

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Rise of the Northstar w/Hightower and Inner Reflections in Paris (@Le Divan du Monde, 23/01/2015)

One of my personal goals as a writer for Two Guys Metal reviews would be to show that the French heavy music scene is one full of talent, deserving our close support and appreciation. So it was to my great surprise that I showed up at the doors to the Rise of the Northstar release party to find a horde of fans queuing behind a door marked with a sign stating "FULL". This comes off as an even more impressive accomplishment for the band, considering the largely DIY route they've adopted for a majority of their career, earning themselves a solid reputation and fanbase as well as millions of hits on youtube even before their recent well-earned contract with Nuclear Blast.

Inner Reflections setlist
First band on the bill tonight was a French band named Inner Reflections, who started off the evening with their hard-hitting modern metal songs. This bands' sound is mainly based around a melodic form of metalcore, complemented with various thrash and groove metal influences.
Armed with a solid, well balanced set of songs as well as an great amount of stage presence, Inner Reflections delivered a very solid show that got the crowd going wild only a couple of songs into the evening. With their great groovy riffs and occasional melodic leads, the band seemed determined to make the utmost out of their opening set, which they undeniably pulled off. The vocalist didn't hesitate to jump into the crowd to up the ante in the pit while delivering his powerful screams for one of the last songs of their set. Overall, Inner Reflections put on a great show, earning them some well-deserved praise from the audience.

Next up on stage was the punk rock band Hightower. Musically speaking, I must say that I was most impressed by this bands' set; having grown up to the sound of punk rock, this bands' dose of energetic and melodic punk rock amongst the likes of A Wilhelm Scream and Hi-Standard struck a chord in me. 
Unfortunately for them, one could not help but feel like their set was unfortunately badly scheduled. After being called up under short notice following The Great divide's cancellation, the band ended up playing in between 2 extremely heavy metal and hardcore acts, for fans that were eager to keep their blood pumped before the headlining act. It is on that account that I will put aside the bands' blitzkrieg style set and overall unpleasantly cold attitude. With virtually no breaks and no acknowledgement to their audience whatsoever, the band rushed through their set, dropped the mic and before rushing off the stage. Far from getting a negative feedback, only a handful of people seemed to appreciate the bands' set while the rest of the crowd simply stayed unresponsive.
Despite this, band showed a considerable amount of stage presence and energy during their superb albeit rushed and grumpy set.
Visibly the bands’ clean singing and melodic hooks played at breakneck speed did not strike a chord like it did for the old punk rock fan I happen to be, which I can understand perfectly. Still, I for one do highly recommend checking out this band, for anyone looking for an effective dose of punk rock. I hope to see this band again soon in a more appropriate context and a better mood.

Then came the time for our headlining act to hit the stage. After setting up some nice stage props and decorations, the Parisian act met their loyal fanbase, sporting their signature Japanese badboy attire. Starting off their set with the epic opening guitar leads off their newest debut release, the band quickly got to business by delivering their devastating take on old-school New York hardcore mix with beatdown hardcore and thrash metal. Keeping things strong and steady, they then followed the song up with their latest single, the excellent title track "Welcame".
As for the other bands this evening, the sound was spot on, allowing every song to come to life, since it is visibly through the live rendition of their songs that the band is able to showcase their primary strength.
Having turned the venue into a gigantic warzone, the crowd was more than enthusiastic to scream and chant along to the bands' deadly effective hooks.
Over the course of their set, Rise of the Northstar visibly pulled no punches when it came to making the sold out crowd of fans at Le Divan du Monde go wild. With an airtight performance, insane energy and charisma from every member, Rise of the Northstar left no room for disappointment tonight.
What we got was over an hour and a half of pure adrenaline and energy brought by a spot on performance by the band.

Visibly taking nothing for granted, Rise of the Northstar pulled off a stunning show, further affirming their well-earned fanbase and their place as one of Frances' most promising hardcore/metal acts of the past few years.


Specil thanks go to Rise of the Northstar as well as their management for their extensive and much appreciated support.

Rise of the Northstar Setlist

Inner Reflections

Rise of the Northstar
Official website

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