Dark Tranquillity, Insomnium and Cypher16 at the Camden Underworld, London on 28th September 2010.

Competition winners Cypher16 opened proceedings while people were still filling up the venue. From what I saw, the young band seemed keen to put on a show, trying really hard to impress a crowd who were obviously there to see the metal masters that followed them.

Singer/guitarist Jack Doolan seemed lost for words at one point but generally did a good job of getting the crowd going, even entering the mosh pit himself. Their own songs need a little work, but a cover of Metallica’s Creeping Death was a welcome conclusion to a fine performance.

Insomnium were greeted like heroes on their enterance to the stage. The Finnish band’s expansive soundscapes and melodic-death metal magnificence came across really well, in spite of the piss-poor acoustics of The Underworld.

DT’s Mikael Stanne joined the band on stage to sing Weather the Storm, which was also filmed for their new video. This was the highlight of a good set, but was probably done too early on, the rest of their performance, though very good, felt like a slight anti-climax after that.

(R-L) Mikael Stanne, Martin Henriksson, Daniel Antonsson, Niklas Sundin.

A technical hitch after opener At the Point of Ignition saw Dark Tranquillity standing around doing next-to-nothing for a good few minutes. But it is great credit to them that it didn’t destroy the momentum or atmosphere, if anything the banter improved things.

The influential group have been around for 20 years, and played a set which included 1995’s The Gallery (the song, not the album), and a wide selection of tracks from their back catalogue (although Therein was a surprise omission).

New bassist Daniel Antonsson looks through the smoke.

Despite the fact that there can be little they haven’t seen over the years, they seemed to be genuinely enjoying their time on stage, although not as much as the sold out crowd did. I suspect the gig had the “right vibe” that Niklas Sundin told me about last week.

Mikael Stanne promised that Dark Tranquillity will be coming back to the UK soon. After this scintillating performance, we can’t wait.

The setlist.

If you think you took any better photos at the gig and want to share them with the world email them to muchmoremetaldotcom[at]googlemail.com. You’ll get full credit for them.

Check out our interview, from last week, with guitarist Niklas Sundin here.