Jeff Loomis Live at The Well, Leeds

It’s not every day that a genuine guitar hero comes to town, so the 2012 Euroblast tour’s visit to The Well in Leeds afforded the chance to see ex-Nevermore axeman Jeff Loomis up close and personal.

Jeff Loomis Live at The Well by CackBlabbath

This year’s Euroblast lineup did seem like a bit of an odd mix, with Stealing Axion, Vildhjarta and Monuments also on the bill, so lots of “tech” then….

On this tour, under the “Jeff Loomis Band” flag, Jeff has surrounded himself with some amazing musicians. OK, so I’m not going to pretend that this show wasn’t all about Jeff’s phenomenal shredding but the accompanying lineup that he’s assembled for this tour are no slouches either….

The band came on-stage and Jeff was immediately (both metaphorically and literally) center stage. If there’s a better introduction to this guys talents than Jato Unit then I’d like to see it. Legs apart, head down, fingers flying up and down the fretboard, this was sheer unadulterated worship at the altar of the shred.

Jeff Loomis Live at The Well by CackBlabbathWe stayed in instrumental shred-land with Sibylline Origin from the new Plains Of Oblivion album, but there were Mic stands on stage, and they weren’t just for decoration šŸ™‚

As I mentioned before, tonight was almost all about Jeff’s guitar, but the band have recorded some “proper” songs too. As Joe Nurre put it as he introduced A Liar’s Chain “We have something different for you guys tonight, It’s not just going to be shredding”. Joe has a really strong Death Metal growl and after the opening two instrumentals it injected a nice touch of variety into proceedings.

Still plenty of shred-tastic instrumentals to come though šŸ™‚

OK, so I know that this sort of out-and-out guitar wizardry isn’t to everyone’s taste, but there is no denying that Jeff Loomis is an amazing musician. I honestly can’t imagine the hours of practice that he has put in to get to the point where everything just looks so, well, effortless.

There are some brilliant guitarists around at the moment, but on the strength of tonight’s performance Jeff Loomis is up there with the very best.

An awesome performance.