It's hard to believe that I am actually reviewing another Europe concert video, which could only mean that these veteran Swedish rockers have risen from the ashes of the '80s hair-metal heap and are once again giving their devoted fans the melodic hard-rock that they still crave. Europe has actually been back together for some time now, officially reuniting in 2003 after an 11-year hiatus that started in 1992 when the '80's metal scene began dying its slow, agonizing death.
In 2004, Europe released their sixth studio album, and first in about 13 years, Start from the Dark, which saw the band going for a much heavier and more modern sound than the lighter, keyboard dominated stuff that most casual fans will remember them by when The Final Countdown was dominating the charts in the mid-'80s. This album would mark the return of their classic lineup of Joey Tempest (vocals), John Norum (guitar), John Leven (bass), Mic Michaeli (keyboards), and Ian Haughland (drums); and they would also be responsible for two more albums to follow, 2006's Secret Society, and 2009's Last Look At Eden.
Earlier this year, Europe finished up their two-year Last Look At Eden world tour with a second leg in the U.K. that was dubbed the "Balls 'N' Banners Tour 2011." The band filmed their sold-out show at London's Shepherds Bush Empire on February 19, 2011, for this excellent new concert DVD/BD.
The band kicks off the concert with a couple cuts from their latest album, Last Look At Eden, with the title track and the heavy-as-it-sounds "The Beast." "Last Look at Eden," with its soaring chorus of the gods, is slowly becoming one of my favorite Europe songs, and it most certainly lets you know that these boys are back and sounding better than ever. Joey Tempest was one of the better singers from the '80's metal scene and his vocals are also as strong as they have ever been.