"Hello Manchester, we are Leaves' Eyes from Norway and we would like to play some songs for you tonight", said vocalist Liv, who has to be the politest performer I've ever seen on the stage. She is so likeable and charming that not only are you more attentive to the music but also at the back of your mind you're thinking, 'I wonder if she's going to make us all a nice cup of tea at the end'.
I had heard a couple of Leaves' Eyes tracks before the show and wasn't particularly blown away, but in the live environment the guitars and bottom end are increased causing the music to have much more of an impact. Initially low in the mix, Liv's vocals were quite angelic over the Goth pounding of the rest of the band. By only the second song the band started to settle down and an unreceptive crowd were soon won over by their sheer quality. Alex Krull appeared for the next track adding some beastly growls to the proceedings. His presence was extremely infectious and lifted the crowd and not even catching his extremely long hair on the nails in the low ceiling could stop his enthusiasm. When Alexander is not on stage, it is down to Liv to fill his spot, which she has some difficulty doing. When she is belting out the lyrics in full-on opera mode she has the audience transfixed but when she's waiting for the next line she seems pensive, looking like a nervous singer at a talent show. The rest of the band were obviously enjoying themselves even though they play second fiddle to Liv. The set was over far too quickly and left the crowd hungry for more. I guess this could be a good thing because I for one will be first in the queue for a ticket next time they come round.