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Wage War @ Melkweg

CONCERT REVIEW: Wage War Prove They Are On Their Way To Bigger Things During Epic Amsterdam Show

A few years ago, we saw the Australian metalcore band The Amity Affliction in the same room we were in tonight, with Wage War as one of the opening bands in a room that was not even sold-out. How great it was tonight to see Wage War tear up this room in a headliner capacity, with the room sold-out months in advance. Together with The Devil Wears Prada and Siamese, Wage War returned to Amsterdam for an epic show in order to support the release of their most recent album Manic, which has taken the band’s popularity to new heights.

For us, the night started with The Devil Wears Prada, after interviewing frontman Mike Hranica a little before their set took place to discuss all things ZII and Color Decay. Like Wage War, The Devil Wears Prada haven’t been sitting still in the pandemic, and released the highly anticipated follow-up to the Zombie EP and a brand new record Color Decay in the timespan of 2 years. You would expect a certain expertise from a band as seasoned as TDWP in a live setting, and this expectation was matched. With a very varied setlist, ranging from the ‘old and gold’ songs Dez Moines and Danger: Wildman all the way to the brand new Color Decay, which made up 1/3th of the setlist tonight with the popular singles Salt, Sacrifice and Watchtower.

Even with a relatively new line-up, The Devil Wears Prada show why they have been a cornerstone in the scene and continue to be so, with great new music and shows alike. The pit was never-ending and the excitement never died down. We cannot wait for the band to return, perhaps in a headliner capacity next time? It’d be a shame if we never got to hear Time live!

Wage War are one of those bands that popped up on our radar rather early. When they first released singles under the name Wage War in 2015 already on their current label Fearless Records, it was very apparent to us that these guys had immense talent and could potentially get very far. 7 years later, I think we can safely state that the best possible outcome has happened for Wage War. After years of hard work and countless tours, Wage War are already on their fourth album and currently being listened to by an audience of 1.3 million of monthly listeners on Spotify alone.

After seeing the band as headliner in the Melkweg in 2019 in the small ‘upstairs’ room, the band now sold out the next room in line, which is 2,5 bigger than the ‘upstairs’. Kicking off their set with Relapse and Teeth, the tone was set for the rest of the evening. No room for slow songs, just moshing, screams and breakdowns for the rest of the evening. The setlist was masterfully curated with a slight focus on the new album Manic, from which the title track was one of the pinnacles of the performance. With an entire room shouting back MANIC and the moshpit making up the bigger part of the venue, this song was clearly among the favourites.

Musically and energetically, Wage War are absolutely insane live. Clean vocalist Cody Quistad is an absolute treasure we should protect at all cost, but seriously this band just works. Plain and simple. We would love to see Wage War return for an even bigger show, with perhaps a little bit bigger production, there’d be no stopping this band from headlining festivals within the scene in a few years.

Check out what The Devil Wears Prada & Wage War‘s sets looked like in the galleries below and make sure to catch this tour on the road if you get the chance!

The Devil Wears Prada:

Wage War:

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Glenn van den Bosch