LIVE REVIEW: VOLBEAT @ Glasgow SSE Hydro

Muscular and meaty guitar riffs? Check. Melodic? Check. Hints of punk, rockabilly and metal? Check, check check.
The worlds finest Elvis-metal band were in Glasgow this weekend and they didn't disappoint. Serving up a platter of 11 hard hitting tracks on a bed of ear-splitting, ass-kicking riffs, draped over some nectar sweet choruses.
Sharing the stage at the SSE Hydro on a triple bill with Alter Bridge and Gojira, it was the Danish metallers who didn't just steal the show – they packaged it up, tied a bow on it and stuck it under the musical Christmas tree of some 12,000 plus rock revellers packed into the arena.
Volbeat play music to thrill the masses. Internationally they have become a stadium rocking, festival headlining act and similar status is surely to follow here in the UK.
Frontman Michael Poulsen, who is fondly nick named 'Little Elvis' by Metallica main man – and rabid Volbeat fan – James Hetfield, is the kind of frontman who demands you attention, cranking out riffs to rival anyone in the rock world, yet spinning yarns and telling tales with his thoughtful and interesting lyrics and song subjects.
In the past few years Poulsen and co penning musical ditties on subjects from Mary Jane Kelly, who was Jack The Ripper's final victim, Marie Laveau, an American voodoo priestess, Lola Montez, a famous dancer, actress and lecturer.
Back to the action and Volbeat kick-start their set with the lead single from their most recent album, 'The Devil's Bleeding Crown,' the show roaring towards top speed from the off.
As they break into crowd favourite 'Lola Montez' the band are almost drowned out by the roar of approval from the floor. 
Volbeat fire up the crowd interaction with a series of nods to their own musical heroes as they dip into a Johnny Cash 'Ring of Fire' guitar introduction which preludes 'Sad Man's Tongue.'
But it is their own material which the huge crowd are baying for. 'Evelyn' sees the band welcome Barney Greenway of grind-core pioneers Napalm Death onto the stage with Poulsen revealing Greenway is one of his heroes.
'16 Dollars' is another huge fan favourite as the gas is stomped on just a little harder. The kind of hip-swinging, head banging, partner-swinging tune which would make the perfect soundtrack to a wild night in any small town. 
'Counting all the assholes in the room....Well I'm definitely not alone, well I'm not alone....' sang Poulsen with his band's closing track.
Prompting a mass sing-a-long and rhythmic foot stomping session the song brings to an end a set of just over an hour. 
Volbeat are far from alone. For many of the 12,000 who dug deep for a three-band bill  just a few weeks prior to Christmas, Volbeat were the main draw. Across Europe they are already evolving into stadium rocking, festival headlining, ass kickers. On this form it won't be long before Andy Copping and the rest are forced to do the same and elevate Volbeat to the top of the festival tree here in the UK.

 

eric@newrocktimes.com