Swedish melodic metallers HAMMERFALL will release a concert DVD+2CD and Blu-ray+2CD, "Gates Of Dalhalla", on November 30 via Nuclear Blast. The set will feature the band's extraordinary 135-minute 15th-anniversary show that took place on July 28 on the historic open-air stage Dalhalla, built in an old quarry near the small Swedish village Rättvik. The footage was captured by Swedish director Patric Ullaeus of the Revolver Film Company AB, who has previously worked with IN FLAMES, DIMMU BORGIR, EUROPE and LACUNA COIL, among many others.
Commented HAMMERFALL guitarist Oscar Dronjak: "The set contained 26 tracks and lasted two hours and 15 minutes, by far the longest and most comprehensive gig of our entire career! We played songs from every album and then some. There were lots of guests and pyros, and we had 80 Marshall cabinets and the big shield with the HF logo carved out in the middle hanging brought out of storage, all set in an extremely unique venue. You really have to see it to understand. This concert really captured the essence of HAMMERFALL live in 2012 very well!"
Special guests during the concert included original HAMMERFALL members Jesper Strömblad (IN FLAMES) and Mikael Stanne (DARK TRANQUILLITY), as well as ex-HAMMERFALL guitarist Stefan Elmgren.
Added Oscar: "Everything concerning this release is special: the venue, the occasion, the setlist, the guests. If you are going to celebrate something, do it properly, and this is exactly what we have done. HAMMERFALL with extra everything, 100% live, 0% bullshit."
The setlist for the concert was as follows:
01. Patient Zero
02. Heeding The Call
03. Any Means Necessary
05. Riders Of The Storm
06. Let's Get It On
07. Crimson Thunder
09. Blood Bound (special guest: Stefan Elmgren)
10. Last Man Standing (special guest: Stefan Elmgren)
11. Fury Of The Wild (special guest: Stefan Elmgren)
12. Drum Solo: Anders Johansson
13. Always Will Be
14. Dia De Los Muertos
15. Steel Meets Steel (special guest: Mikael Stanne)
17. The Dragon Lies Bleeding (special guest: Jesper Strömblad)
18. Let The Hammer Fall
19. När Vindarna Viskar Mitt Namn (special guest: Roger Pontare)
20. Something For The Ages
21. The Templar Flame
22. Oh Fortuna (special guest: Team Cans)
23. Glory To The Brave (special guest: Team Cans)
24. One More Time (special guest: Team Cans)
26. Hearts On Fire (featuring all special guests)
The "Threshold" performance clip from "Gates Of Dalhalla" can be seen below.
The members of HAMMERFALL announced in March that they were take an extended break immediately following their festival appearances this summer.
"It has been an unbelievable first 15 years, to say the least," said guitarist Oscar Dronjak, "and now we are taking a pause to ensure that we have another 15 years ahead of us."
There will be no HAMMERFALL activities in 2013, but the band promises to return strong the following year. "The plan is to use the year off to recharge our batteries and come back more vital than ever with a new album in 2014," explained singer Joacim Cans.
HAMMERFALL's new album, "Infected", sold around 1,700 copies in the United States in its first week of release. The CD debuted at No. 16 on the Top New Artist Albums (Heatseekers) chart, which lists the best-selling albums by new and developing artists, defined as those who have never appeared in the Top 100 of The Billboard 200.
HAMMERFALL's previous CD, "No Sacrifice, No Victory", opened with 1,400 units to land at No. 38 on the Top New Artist Albums chart.
"Infected" entered the official chart in Sweden at position No. 2 (right behind LADY GAGA!). The CD was released in Europe in May 2011 and was made available in North America in June via Nuclear Blast Records. Laying down the foundation themselves in their own studio in Sweden, the members of HAMMERFALL then traveled to Nashville, Tennessee to finish it up with acclaimed producer James Michael (MÖTLEY CRÜE, SCORPIONS, MEAT LOAF). He also mixed the album, giving it a decisive updated edge without losing any of the essence of the band's sound.
HAMMERFALL was among the five final nominees that competed for the "Best Hard Rock/Metal" honor at the Swedish Grammis awards (Swedish Grammy equivalent), which was held February 14, 2012 at Kungliga Operan in Stockholm.