Having been a HUGE metal fan, and Accept fan for many years, this being my first time seeing the German Metal legends LIVE filled me with a lot of anticipation and excitement. I arrived at the venue early enough to meet up with the Accept Fans Worldwide group outside of Rolling Thunder, an RV owned by Stephan Soto, the group founder. Peter, Wolf, Stefan, Wolf and Herman all stopped by to visit the fans, and say hi. This pleased all of the members who were there!
We headed inside prior to Accept taking the stage, and host of That Metal Show, Eddie Trunk warmed up the crowd! Accept hit the stage right at 10:30pm and from the beginning notes of Hung Drawn and Quartered from their latest release, Stalingrad…through their closing encore song…Balls to the Wall from their fifth studio album of the same name…Accept had this large New Jersey crowd in the palm of their hands. This was a headlining show where te band had the opportunity to perform a full TWO HOUR set packed with 20 songs from their lengthy career!
This was a high energy show with these rockers who have been together fo decades, performing as if they were still in their teens…full of energy, excitement, and happiness! They followed up Hung Drawn and Quartered with Hellfire, my personal favorite from Stalingrad…and went into Restless and Wild from the album of the same title, the 4th in their recording career. This 20 song concert with songs spanning their lengthy career disappointed no one. This was a crowd filled with fans old and new, and many of whom were there to see the return of Mark Tornillo, former T.T. Quick vocalist.
You could not escape the infectious jubilation that the band had with each other performing on stage, and looking around the crowd, you saw the same. Accept has a way of engaging with their fans in the crowd, that makes you feel like they are performing those songs for YOU, as an individual.
Around 1230am, the band finished their performance with an awesome version of Balls to the Wall, the lights came up, and all in attendance were in agreement that this was one amazing night.
Having been my first Accept concert, I certainly was blown away by their energy, diversity in their set list that spanned their career, the amazing light show and sound, and engagement with the crowd.
I have Accepted the fact, that this will not be my last Accept show.
September 27, 2012. German heavy metal band ACCEPT, after kicking off their tour, are launching a new fan community on Mobile Backstage to connect with their true fans. ACCEPT Mobile Backstage is a community for the most loyal fans of the band. It allows the band and their fans to interact and share their experiences in an intimate and personal environment, far from the noise and clutter of other social media. Fans can post content, send messages to other fans, find and check into gigs, see the location of other fans and their online posts, track the band when on tour, play music, and purchase tracks and tickets. Using Mobile Backstage, ACCEPT will be able to open a dialogue with fans and build a strong and vibrant fan community.ACCEPT Mobile Backstage is now available on iPhone, Android, Facebook and the web. Join ACCEPT Mobile Backstage at: host.mobilebackstage.net/backstage1/p/508666About Mobile Backstage…Helsinki-based Mobile Backstage is a fan relationship management service that helps artists to connect with their True Fans. Easily accessible on the web, Facebook and mobile devices, Mobile Backstage lives wherever fans are, and strengthens every artist’s most important asset – the core fan base.
Accept hit the stage and blasted into “Hung, Drawn and Quartered” off their 2012 release Stalingrad. Immediately it was obvious this was going to be a special night. There are a couple of aspects of an Accept live show that make it an experience to not be forgotten. First you have the music; straight up Heavy Metal – the new music is as good as the classics – every tune rocks!! Second you have the stage presence – not many can hold a candle to Accept. From Wolf Hoffman’s, Peter Baltes and Herman Franks’s constant smiles, frequent in-unison head-banging and in-sync guitar/bass motions to Mark Tornillo’s electrifying vocal delivery there isn’t a dull moment during their performance.
The band played a perfect mix of classic Accept songs along with soon to be classics from their 2010 comeback album Blood of the Nations and four songs from their 2012 release Stalingrad. It’s hard to believe that Accept has been around since the early 80’s by watching their performance – the energy delivered in their current show rivals that of their younger days. Proof is in guitarists Wolf Hoffman’s guitar solos and the fact that this guy cannot stand still for more than 5 seconds . . . He is without a doubt the king of silly guitar faces.
Longtime fans seem to have welcomed vocalist Mark Tornillo (replacing original vocalist Udo Dirkschneider) with open arms based on the crowd reaction to songs new and old throughout the night. Highlights included “Stalingrad”, “Teutonic Terror”, “Fast as a Shark” and the last song of the night, a fantastic version of their biggest hit “Balls to the Wall”. Accept delivered an epic night of Heavy Metal to the lucky fans in attendance . . . 80 minutes of music to warm your Metal Heart!!
Alright, I’m up. What a night!
I took BART into the city so I wouldn’t have to deal with the hassles of traffic. Went to the venue and found Wolf signing autographs and Stephen carrying on a never-ending conversation with some crazy woman (though I don’t know which one of them is crazier). I couldn’t even introduce myself they kept going back and forth. Then Mark came out of the bus and I asked him if he recognized me and he did. He signed stuff for some fans and we chatted. He had to go so I headed to Tommy’s Joynt for the best turkey sandwich ever.
After that I hung out in the merchandise area. I went down front and stayed there for the first half. Every song was spot-on. Super tight showmanship and because of the limited time, Mark did not really talk between songs. This means it was one lashing after another until they had the audience bleeding. I love these kinds of shows! I will add Shadow Soldiers started with a different vibe and I wasn’t sure about it being in this set until they sang the choruses- they were so strong! One of the highlights indeed. In fact, the new songs were really the highlights. It was also great that BttW was stripped down to it’s core (finally!).
So as mentioned, I was standing next to Frank at the soundboard for the second half and during BttW, Frank waves his hand high in the air as a challenge to Peter. Next thing something hits me on the chest and on the ground is Peter’s pick! A 30 yard shot all the way to the back of the hall!
So I said hi to Frank and said I would see him out back. I hung around with the simple intention of saying hello to everyone and not even bothering with autographs. Then Frank opens the bus door and calls me over to invite me aboard! I step in and Peter’s waiting for me. I took a seat on the couch and we talked about San Francisco (I went to culinary school a block away), politics, the state of the music industry as well as the state of our youth. Wolf popped in and it finally clicked who I was once I asked about the thank you posters we made last year. His is hanging in his studio. Mark then came in and joined the conversation. Then Morgan and her husband came in to do an interview consisting of fan submitted questions. She had some good ones until she dared ask “The Question!” I warned “Don’t go there” just as Peter and Wolf refused to answer. After she was done I added a couple of my own- ones that I keep meaning to ask:
To Wolf, who were your influences growing up? He answered Ritchie Blackmore, Uli Jon Roth, Queen, Michael Shenker, AC/DC, Status Quo, Uriah Heep and a few others.
To Peter, do you still go to concerts anymore? Short answer is no and we all discussed why. They both put it that as professional musicians, they get bored very quickly watching other bands. Wolf said he can mabye watch 2 songs at a festival and then feels the need to move on. I guess watching your contempories just is not the same as the fan-musician relationship.
So after an hour and a half we called it a night. I will say that Accept and crew are still very appreciative of all their fans. We are all fortunate for having each other. They are very hard working men. I did not put this together until I realized, when they are not doing Accept, which in the last 3 years was nearly impossible, they are very busy doing all kinds of things! As for me, I would like to express my deepest thanks for their hospitality. Your music has been the soundtrack of my life for 28 years and it makes me very happy to call you friends.
I admit it. ACCEPT was a band that for one reason or another I ignored during the metal heyday of the 80′s, and continued to dismiss over the next 25+ years. Sure, I enjoyed “Balls to the Wall” when it was inevitably played over the PA system prior to every rock concert in the 80s, but I never owned a single album. Then, in 2010, with new vocalist Mark Tornillo at the mic and on the pen, the band released a shockingly stellar metal assault called “Blood of the Nations”. It was not only a comeback album of epic proportions, but arguably the best metal album of the year. In 2012, they equaled the previous effort with the remarkable “Stalingrad” release. Both albums deliver song after song that drive hard with a rare combination of intensity, aggression, top-shelf musicianship, killer guitar tone, massive melody, and perfectly matched lyrics & vocals.
On Sept 25, ACCEPT rolled into San Francisco’s Regency Ballroom amidst their extensive North American Teutonic Terror Attack 2012 tour (co-headlining with Kreator). I anticipated that it was going to be a great show featuring a setlist showcasing a majority of the new songs (how many times has anyone said that?), but I was unprepared for just how compelling the performance would be. Accept were stunning. The songs surpassed the studio versions in intensity, Tornillo is a beast on the mic, and the musicians delivered with supreme showmanship, crowd interaction, and sonic precision. Each member, despite their exhaustive touring schedule over the past several years, were clearly enjoying themselves on stage (or doing a damn fine job of faking it).