Bonfire - Live Over Europe
LZ Records
Melodic Hard Rock
17 songs (75'25)
Release year: 2002
Reviewed by Ben

First off, this isn’t a brand new release by Bonfire, Live Over Europe came out a few months ago and for some ODD reason it got passed over here. Well here’s my chance to rectify this serious problem. Live Over Europe was recorded on the Golden Bullets tour so this is pretty much Bonfire’s greatest hits live and it actually has almost all the songs the fans wanted, which is a rarity for live albums these days. It covers the majority of their career but does however, leave out songs from Knockout, Feels Like Coming Home, and Rebel Soul. While I could sit here and complain about not hearing Somebody’s Waiting or Down and Out I won’t, because we have more than enough fan favorites to make up for the songs that are missed.

The show begins with a triple shot of glory with monsters of songs Daytona Nights, Don’t Go Changin’ Me and Bang Down the Door. That right there surprised and delighted me to no extent, you couldn’t ask for a better opening to a show. The sound is very rich and the live atmosphere is captured really well, this album was meant to be played LOUD. I know most metal bands would want you to play their cd’s louder than hell but Live Over Europe demands it. The sound just isn’t as powerful and the live feeling sounds muted if you play this below a dull roar. Claus Lessman’s voice is as strong as it is in the studio and he sings every song perfectly and its obvious that there wasn’t studio trickery here, he really is that good. His voice in general is a very unique voice, with a warm rich tone that has a gritty edge to it. He’s one of those singers that’s blessed with a distinctive voice as well and he can never be confused with someone else and for Bonfire’s music he is perfect. After the triple shot opener we are treated to two abridged versions of tracks from their debut Don’t Touch the Light, the songs Hot to Rock complete with extended crowd interaction and the title track. By now, especially in Hot to Rock you notice that guitarist Hans Ziller kicks some serious ass and has terrific riffs and leads that on more than one occasion make you look up and go, “Hey, now THAT was cool.” The rhythm section is very tight as well, Jurgen Wiehler pounds his drums with authority and Uwe Kohler provides a steady pulse with the bass.

Love of the United States is obvious as the band whips out with the rousing Down to Atlanta, a feel good up tempo song about the south, one of their best songs about the US in my opinion. Following their US worship the band shows us that although they love America they are also proud Germans and proceed with Proud of My Country, a driving song with some thoughtful lyrics. Before we get to the two ballads on the setlist comes perhaps the biggest surprise, the godly Heat in the Glow. I say surprisingly because while I love this song like none other, not many other Bonfire fans seem to talk about it in as high of a regard as me . Well needless to say I am one satisfied fan at this point no doubt about it, except for the fact that when I think about the fact that since I’m stuck in the USA I probably won’t ever see Bonfire live in my life. That depressing matter aside, things are calmed down with Who’s Fooling Who?, while a decent song it isn’t one of the sets highlights, and the gorgeous Goodnight Amanda. The live rendition of Goodnight Amanda is a stripped down semi-acoustic version and it translates well and keeps you listening throughout its duration. A couple more uptempo songs follow before a cover of Lynyrd Skynyrd’s Sweet Home Alabama. Bonfire have taken this southern rock song and made it their own with a richer guitar tone and an overall beefier performance. While I don’t jump up and down with joy for Lynryd Skynryd this is a fun listen nonetheless. Once again the band shows how much they love the US. If you love it so much come here, please. I beg of you. The show then comes to an end with a three shot of the Strike X album, Strike Back, Good Time Rock n Roll, and Until the Last Goodbye. All three go over great and the crowd goes wild especially during Good Time Rock n Roll. No one can accuse Bonfire of not being a great, fun live band.

If you are like me and a huge Bonfire fan, then Live Over Europe is a great package for you. You have your favorite songs here and a terrific performance by the band. If you like Bonfire, you’ll eat Live Over Europe up. Trust me.

Killing Songs :
Daytona Nights, Bang Down the Door, Down to Atlanta, Heat in the Glow and Good Time Rock n Roll
Ben quoted no quote
Other albums by Bonfire that we have reviewed:
Bonfire - Fireworks reviewed by Erik and quoted 91 / 100
Bonfire - Don't Touch The Light reviewed by Erik and quoted 87 / 100
Bonfire - Double X reviewed by Mike and quoted 79 / 100
Bonfire - Free reviewed by Mike and quoted 28 / 100
Bonfire - Fuel to the Flames reviewed by Ben and quoted 88 / 100
To see all 9 reviews click here
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