In the morning I quickly pass in front of Demonic Resurrection and their Behemoth worship to drink something as the sun is already hitting hard on everybody’s head. It’s time to find some cover inside the fortress in a very well arranged area full of drinkers still dressed in black despite the weather. It’s then time for Pro-Pain who grooves nicely via some simplistic hardcore riffing and gives the crowd a good preparation for (Hed)Pe.
In my nu metal days, I used to enjoy their first two albums but none of this songs will be played. Band frontman Jared is the only remaining member of the original line up but the musicians he plays with are all excellent. In fact, with a funky drummer, a rapping frontman and a guitar player with a Dimebag beard, they look like Faith no More. However, even if the musicians are all good, the material just rehash every cliché in nu metal. It shows that being open minded and wanting to mix different styles of music is completely different to be being talented enough to play it and make it sound right.
Krisiun on the other hand is very basic but knows how to play it’s stuff very well, even it’s just brutal death metal. In this festival, they are welcome like gods and enjoy this a bit too much as they try to ask for an extra song. Sadly, it won’t be possible as the schedule is pretty tight in a festival like this but they will probably return their very soon.
I then skip Ill Nino who are still playing the first song from their first album (from back to 2001) and come back for Decapitated. The polish kids are also very appreciated over there but once you go past the new songs their set list is the same one since at least four years ago. Songs from Carnival is forever are still very enjoyable, but it’s a bit boring to still find in conclusion the same cuts from Organic hallucinosis (Day 69) and Nihility (Spheres of madness).
I then leave the fest to get some rest as Walls of Jericho begins their set and come back for Brujeria. The « mexican » all-star band (Shane Embury, Nicholas Barker) are as entertaining as ever even if they have yet to release a new album since Brujerizmo (in 2000!). Classics like La migra sounds even more vital today after the racist declaration from upcoming Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump (whose face is featured on the band’s tee-shirt with the mention Puto underneath) whereas Anti-Castro sound quite dated. The whole « narcos schtick » feels also completely out of place now but the songs are still fun and make up for the lack of relevancy. What’s quite welcome however is the presence of frontwoman Gaby Dominguez since most acts on this bill don’t have females in their line up.
The Dillinger Escape Plan are used to play outdoors and attack the crowd with the knowledge and practice of many years spent touring all over the world. Most of their setlist comes from their post Miss machine albums but everybody seems to lap it up. Nonetheless, the biggest crowd creation comes when Panasonic youth and Sunshine the werewolf are played but not so much for 43% burnt. Business as usual for The Dillinger Escape Plan, but business is good.
The same could be said for Napalm Death even if it wasn’t for a big technical problem that spoiled their finale. The band’s set went well with the polish and Czech crowd, going as far as inspiring two mosh pits! However, before the last two songs, Barney Greenway‘s mic started not working. The crowd quickly signaled the problem and it soon got fixed. However, the same thing had happened to all the instruments which means that the crowd could only hear his screams backed by some tiny hit from the drums. An hilarious sight but also a frustrating one. The band will soon be back on the road with the Deathcrush fest but this time, they will be back with a vengeance.
Because of Killing Joke‘s last minute cancellation, Candlemass has moved to one of the bigger stage which left an empty slot filled by Svartidaudi who accepted to play again, therefore making up with my lost chance to see them after Sunn0))). Playing outside rather than in a club does not suit their sound too much and their vocals are too high in the mix, but despite these problems the band’s set of orthodox black metal is still highly enjoyable if you focus on the excellent guitar work and the complex drumming. Without a doubt one of my favorite band of recent years.
After Soulfly laughable set, it was fun to finally see some Sepultura songs played as they should be, even if it was only Roots bloody roots and Ratamahata. Max Cavalera might still have his ears close to the underground considering he was sporting a Full of Hell patch for Soulfly‘s set, but he is dead wrong when he says Sepultura are finished.
Death DTA follows and starts playing all the Death material I don’t care about. Make no mistake, I’m not saying Human, Individual thought patterns or Symbolic are awful, but I prefer Scream bloody gore and Leprosy. However, with technical musicians such as Gene « the human drum machine » Hoglan (Dark Angel, Strapping Young Lad) and Jacob Schmidt (Obscura) on bass it was obvious that the material played would not be low on technicality. However, what mostly lacked in this performance is any feeling at all. Death DTA is a very respectful endeavor from a group of devoted musicians who are performing Death’s material note by note and nailing it so much that it is devoid of any soul.
Finally, Godflesh is the weird band of the night (followed closely by Dodheimsgard) but they will not face any technical difficulties aside from having to move back and forth from the computer to start every new beat. The duo starts with material from their latest album, A world lit only by fire, and pummels the crowd with some danceable and heavy beats with some massive riffing on top. This all feels like a more modern take on Streetcleaner for the 21st if the songs from said album did not still sound as vital as before. Like rats, Locust furnace and then Streetcleaner (their most metal song), this feels perfect but it lacked a proper conclusion. Instead G.C. Green quickly leaves the stage, leaving only Broadrick to play and salute the crowd. A bittersweet ending for an otherwise excellent show.