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Grave Digger - Tunes Of Wacken

Label: Gun Records
Format: DVD/CD
Released: 2002
Reviewed By: Rich Catino

Grave Diggers eleventh release, and first live album, was filmed at the legendary Wacken Open Air Festival in Wacken, Germany. To those of you unfamiliar with Grave Digger's sound it is characterized by Chris Boltendahl’s unique sounding abrasive, rather Germanic, toned vocals accompanied by chainsaw guitars and a solid rhythm section. Arrangements vary from the fast paced to mid-tempo head bangers and the occasional orchestrated mood setting piece.

Playing to over 30,000 in attendance, this DVD (also available on CD) is a fine example to Grave Digger’s European following. Tracks are taken from the classic first LP “Heavy Metal Breakdown” from 1984 to the historically based “Tunes Of War”, “Knights of The Cross” and “Excalibur”. Boltendahl has a commanding stage presence with the crowd in the palm of his hand as he rally’s them into singing song after song like "Rebellion", "Heavy Metal Breakdown", "Circle Of Witches".

The DVD also contains a photo gallery, backstage footage, a signing session and a humorous Wacken schedule (see urination activities). For those of you in Japan or the U.S.A , please be sure to note that the DVD is formatted in PAL format (the European standard DVD, VCR and TV viewing format) so make sure your TV and DVD are compatible with the PAL format or this will not work properly and will appear to be defective. I myself had to buy an Imported Daewoo DVD player (DVD-5700, easily found on Ebay) just to watch it, but believe me when I tell you, it was well worth it. Someone please send this band to our shores to tour.
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