Gamma Ray - Hell Yeah!!! The Awesome Foursome - Live In Montreal (DVD)
SPV
Power Metal
Disc 1: 18 songs (120'00) Disc 2: 15 songs (157'00)
Release year: 2009
Gamma Ray, SPV
Reviewed by Marty
Major event
Gamma Ray has released a couple of DVDs over the years (neither of which are available anymore). Heading For The East was filmed in Japan in 1990 and chronicled the band's first tour in support of their debut album Heading For Tomorrow. One of original lead vocalist Ralf Scheepers' (Primal Fear) last performances with the band on the tour for Insanity and Genius was captured on the Lust For Live DVD. Both of these DVDs were nothing more than an hour of performance with very little along the lines of extras etc. Press releases as far back as 2 years ago indicated that Gamma Ray was working on another live DVD release and judging by how long this band takes between studio albums, it shouldn't come as any big surprise that this DVD wasn't released until late last year. Filmed in front of a wildly enthusiastic crowd in Montreal, Canada in May of 2006, Hell Yeah!!! The Awesome Foursome sees the band in prime form in the midst of touring North America for the very first time in support of their Majestic album.

The CD version of this has already been reviewed here at Metalreviews but this DVD package is full of extras and rare footage that I felt it warranted a review of its own. I saw the band in Toronto at The Opera House on the very same tour and much like the show here, the band was simply brilliant. Toronto only drew about 400 but the Montreal show drew close to 2000 crazy metal heads at The Medley. I'm sure Kai Hansen and company were quite surprised to see a wild crowd fist pumping, crowd surfing and singing along with almost every word in a city that they had never played before. Montreal is the metal "hotbed" of Canada with most bands drawing quite well there and are quite impressed with the "Montreal enthusiasm". Without being too repetitive with the CD review, the setlist for the show covers just about the entire career of the band. Tracks like The Silence and Dreamhealer from Heading For Tomorrow and Sigh No More respectively are accompanied by some of the best tracks from Powerplant, No World Order and Land Of The Free including the title track, a crazy and fast Man On A Mission, an acoustic Fairytale and the classic Rebellion in Dreamland. The real highlight is the trio of tracks Beyond The Black Hole, Valley of the Kings and Somewhere Out In Space from the album Somewhere Out In Space; arguably one of the best ever Gamma Ray albums. The encore of Send Me A Sign and Kai's I Want Out, that he wrote while still in Helloween, finishes off a killer 2 hour set that leaves both the band and the crowd exhausted.

The 2 hour Montreal show is easily worth the price of this package but the second DVD clocks in at over 150 minutes and includes another 5 tracks recorded at Wacken Open Air in 2003 and 2006 as well as "The Road Movie" documenting the behind the scenes of the Majestic North American tour. All the Gamma Ray videos are here as well including, Heavy Metal Universe, Space Eater, One With The World, Rebellion In Dreamland, Gamma Ray, Eagle and Send Me A Sign. An acoustic set by Kai Hansen and Henjo Richter is a nice bonus and the "And The Finnish Keyboarder Who Didn't Want To Wear His Donald Duck Costume" subtitle of the DVD gets a proper explanation during the "The Road Movie" segment. The "Historay" section of this second DVD documents the band's entire history and contains yet more backstage footage over the years, home movies and more rare live performances that although are not of the best audio quality, are still excellent collectibles for the serious Gamma Ray fan.

In looking at the contents of this complete 2 DVD package, it's not too surprising that it took so long to finish it for release. The Montreal show on the first DVD is less than half of the content included here. With a complete concert, along with just about every known video, rare live performance and home movie that are known to exist, this presents the Gamma Ray fan with everything you would ever want or need in a DVD release. Even for casual fans or those not all that familiar with Gamma Ray, this would be an excellent place to start.

Killing Songs :
Man On A Mission, Blood Religion, Heavy Metal Universe, The Silence, Beyond The Black Hole, Somewhere Out In Space, Valley Of The Kings and Rebellion In Dreamland
Marty quoted no quote
Other albums by Gamma Ray that we have reviewed:
Gamma Ray - Empire of the Undead reviewed by Andy and quoted 78 / 100
Gamma Ray - Skeletons and Majesties reviewed by Alex and quoted no quote
Gamma Ray - To The Metal! reviewed by Kyle and quoted 79 / 100
Gamma Ray - Somewhere Out In Space reviewed by Kyle and quoted CLASSIC
Gamma Ray - Hell Yeah!!! The Awesome Foursome Live In Montreal reviewed by Pete and quoted no quote
To see all 15 reviews click here
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