Monster rock. It’s really not a genre of rock, but don’t tell that to the Finnish band Lordi. They might eat you, literally.
Making their first ever appearance in Baltimore, these monster costume wearing rockers took the Soundstage by storm and put on a scare-tastic show, full of theatrics a la Alice Cooper. If you have been living under a rock, Lordi, which consists of drummer Mana, bassist Ox, keyboardist Hella, guitarist Amen, and lead singer Mr. Lordi, have been around since 1992, but did not performed live until 2002 and have eight studio albums to date. With influences ranging from Kiss, Alice Cooper, and Twisted Sister, Lordi have developed a style all their own, playing hard rock all the while wearing these full out body costumes shaped as monsters created exclusively by Mr. Lordi. Each character has a background and a story which gives them a personality all their own. As one member left, a new costume and character was created. There have been 12 to date. I had seen them perform way back in 2007 on the Ozzfest tour, their first in the US at the time, and they were incredible. I would not be disappointed ten years later.
“God of Thunder” by Kiss started playing on the speakers as the lights went off, signaling the beginning of the show. Each member started to come out one by one with applause after each appearance. Then Skelator from He-Man and the Masters of the Universe appeared waving, claiming victory, and introduced the band and I knew immediately what song was coming. Mr. Lordi appeared and “Let’s Go Slaughter He-Man (I Wanna Be the Beast-Man in the Masters of the Universe)” started to play off of the new album Monstereophonic (Theaterror vs.Demonarchy). Skelator returned during the middle of the song and stuck He-Man’s head on a stake in front of Mana. This was going to be a great show. “Babez For Breakfast” was next up off the album of the same name. Mr. Lordi is one of the most outgoing and interactive front men I have ever seen with the audience, costume or not, and although this wasn’t Hellfest in France or Wacken in Germany or some other huge European festival, which they have played with thousands in attendance, he makes you feel like part of the band and like there are thousands watching him no matter the size of the crowd. The band does have a lot of songs to choose from with eight albums to date and the hits were well represented. “The Riff,” “Blood Red Sandman,” and “Hard Rock Hallelujah” all got played. The on-stage props came out as well during the night and not just on the first song. During “Devil is a Loser,” Mr.Lordi’s cape spread out like a demons wings. On “Down with the Devil,” a nun came out and Mr. Lordi slapped her to the ground for her trying to exorcise him and burn him with a cross to the head. Their biggest hit, “Would You Love a Monsterman,” was the last song of the evening and everyone in the crowd had to go home happy with that performance.
Lordi has plans to take some time off from the tour when it ends or they could possibly play a show or two in Europe or in their home country of Finland, but according to Mr. Lordi, they will be busy writing a new album for the remainder of 2017 and come back stronger than ever in 2018. I really hope it doesn’t take them another ten years to tour the US again because if you didn’t get to see them this time, well, it might be easier to fly to Europe and catch them as they do not tour over here a lot.