Udo Dirkschneider – Gig Review & Photo Gallery 6th April @ Manning Bar, Syd NSW
Manning Bar, Sydney NSW
April 6, 2023
Support: Elm Street and Night Legion
It is Thursday evening, the night before Good Friday, and could it get any “gooder”? Udo Dirkschneider, first time in Australia, a set of Accept classics, and a packed Manning Bar. The gigs are now starting to roll back into town post-COVID, and it is great to see so many people here and ready to headbang. A real shout-out must go to the Promoter Doug and Amabelle of Hardline Media. I am sure they must have done it tough throughout the challenges of the last few years and they are just keeping the tours coming at the moment.
It was only a few years ago that we had a second tour of Accept to Australia, but this is the first time that we have ever seen Udo, and tonight, it is Udo with his own band, and his son on drums. Coincidentally, it was also Udo’s 71st birthday and just three days after bass player, Peter Baltes’. How good is that! People were really geared up from early in the night for this, you could feel it.
We have two supports tonight Night Legion and Elm Street. Both important Australian metal acts that have released some great material. First up is Night Legion, I had never seen them live before, but I really like their debut album. The band really commanded the space from the opening note, but let’s look at this, they are an experienced outfit. Stu Marshall has been around for a long time and is a highly regarded and experienced musician and new vocalist Louie Gorgievski is seasoned. The band ploughed through a number of songs from their debut ‘Enter the Storm’, and ‘Hell Below’. They also gave us a taste of what’s coming later this year in ‘Babylon Burns‘, ‘Hounds of Baskerville‘ and ‘Into the Light‘.
Night Legion are an impressive outfit with an even stronger lineup, and I am looking forward to seeing how this reiteration develops over the next few years.
Elm Street hit the stage next, and they have come to play. They also have a new album coming out this year after their sophomore release Knock ’em Out which was released in 2016 (our review here). I have always liked the sound and feel of this band and if anything, their hiatus has done their sound and presence a favour. They really stood tall after an extremely strong set and their experience of international touring really rang through tonight. The band were very tight and the guitar melodies in particular stood out for me. I was totally impressed with Elm Street . They were tight, commanding and great to watch. I am looking forward to the album later in the year.
Udo Dirkschneider, was fantastic from the opening note. The crowd were ready, the room was full and this is the first that we have heard Udo deliver the Accept classics in Australia. Now the setlist was obviously not very surprising tonight, and you know what, I am thankful it wasn’t. The band opened with ‘Starlight’, which actually was a bit of a surprise. The classics just kept coming. Udo didn’t give us too much between songs but his presence was strong. He definitely engaged the crowd.
I really need to acknowledge and celebrate the band Udo has brought with him on this tour. They were very impressive – presence, ability and tightness. Not that the leading man needed to be propped up tonight, he was fantastic and what we all wanted, but the band were great. I have to make special mention of the guitar duo and their interactions, impressive on all levels. However, the many guitar interludes did leave me a little flat, and this isn’t because of the musicianship, it was just that I felt there were too many. I would have preferred to hear more songs. Udo’s son Sven Dirkshneider is an excellent drummer. Then we have Peter Baltes, and it was really great to see him and Udo playing alongside each other. The band looked really together too, there was a lot of interaction between them, they obviously enjoy playing as a unit.
For me, the highlights tonight were ‘Breaker’, ‘Midnight Mover’, ‘I’m a Rebel‘, and of course, the entire encore (with no surprises) ‘Metal Heart’, ‘Fast as a Shark’, and ‘Balls to the Wall‘. They were highlights not only because of the songs they are, but also because of how the crowd got involved in the delivery. The whole evening had such a good feeling, what a great way to saunter into the long weekend.
Udo’s first time in Australia, Accept classics sounding how they should, and two very strong supports. A fantastic night, thank you to all bands, the Manning Bar and Hardline Media. I just hope Udo doesn’t leave it too long before he is back.
Gig Review by Mark Snedden
Photo Gallery by Mick Goddard. Insta: @mickg_photography
Please credit Wall of Sound and Mick Goddard if you repost.
Udo Dirkschneider – Australia 2023
April 8 @ Croxton, Melb