WACKEN OPEN AIR 2017

The Festival:-

”One of the festivals on the European metal/alternative circuit that i have always wanted to go to is the Wacken Open Air festival which is 50km north of Hamburg in the state of Schleswig Holstein. Over 3 days in August over 130 bands from various different metal subgenres will play on numerous stages to thousands of dedicated metal pilgrims, many of whom will be making their annual pilgrimage from all over the globe. It will be a time to party, to catch up will old friends,meet new ones and listen to some of the finest music created by some of the most influential acts from all over world, established acts and also new ones too!! All sub genres are catered for, from Hair Metal to Nu Metal all the way through to Black, Death, Thrash, Industrial etc etc! The average age of attendees is around 27 years old and 84, 000 tickets roughly are sold every year and for the past few years all the tickets have been sold out within 24/48 hours of them going on sale which is usually the day after the current festival ends. A nice touch is that  approximately 1800 residents  of the village of Wacken get free passes which is only fair considering that the village has to cater to thousands of people for 3 days, acting as guides, offering accommodation, catering/beer etc and of course putting up with a disruption to their peace and tranquillity!! In 2011 expansion to the festival was halted so as to not abuse the hospitality of the village and also for safely and logistical purposes. I personally think that was a good idea, obviously you want your event to be popular and grow but there comes a point at which the bigger you get the more problems you  encounter and the unique vibe that makes an event what it is can end up being watered down and being totally ruined!!”

The History:-

”The Seminal Wacken commenced on the 24th August 1990 with a band called Skyline and finished the following day with 5th Avenue, Ax’n Sex, Motoslug, Sacred Season and Wizzard (I assume this was not Roy Woods Wizzard but Wizzard from Sweden who were formed in 1985) The 26th Edition in 2016 commenced on Thursday 4th August and finished on Saturday 6th August and bands that played that year included Iron Maiden, Henry Rollins, Ministry, Borknagar and Twisted Sister Amongst others. In the intervening years there have been many bands that i have never heard of playing on the bill with plenty of familiar faces that have included the likes of Dimmu Borgir, Black Dahlia Murder, Motorhead, Cradle Of Filth, Therion, Saxon, Iced Earth, Celtic Frost, Gorgoroth, Mayhem and Amon Armath. This years iteration will include Alice Cooper, Marilyn Manson, Lacuna Coil and the Cavalaera Brothers to name but a few. So, in 26 years we’ve gone from humble beginnings with a handful of bands to the pulsing behemoth we have today with hundreds of artists who are part of the global metal family. May this years  festival be a roaring success  and for many years to come.”

LINKS:-

All travel and accommodation information can be found here. Please do your research carefully and thoroughly, i shall not be held responsible for your mistakes!!:-

http://www.wacken.com/en/

https://www.facebook.com/events/165108507250281/

Skinny Puppy Live!!!!

30th May 2017

Kentish Town Forum, London

Support:- Ventenner

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”Skinny Puppy were on form this evening sharing songs of protest, tracks that question, music that pisses off and provokes a reaction, unlike at a One Direction gig where the only reaction you’d get from me  is of moving quite swiftly towards the exit!! The kentish Town Forum was quite full, not as full as when i saw Rob Zombie as there was space at the back  you could still walk through but a good crowd none the less. This would be the first time i have seen Skinny Puppy since they played the same venue around 2005. Nivek Ogre came onstage wearing a hypodermic needle suit, an allusion to his past addiction that needed attention due to the needles coming out or bending.There was a triangular display showing projections behind Nivek which complimented the stream of consciousness matter of fact abrasive vocal delivery that was filtered through a vocoder. I always  found this vocal delivery sinister and at times disturbing but always fascinating! It’s like listening to someone being garroted whilst they are suspended inside a rusty  drainpipe dripping with rancid water. I can almost taste the rusting metal and the cold foulness of the water!! The sound mix was excellent and i found myself shoulder bopping through out the set, as if trying to create some more room for myself inside the aforementioned drainpipe !! Standout tracks that go my shoulders bopping were ”Fascist Jock Itch” , ”DogShit” , ”VX Gas Attack”, ”Worlock” and ”The Choke”. The sound was strong and the vocals did not disappoint in any shape or manner, this was a fully rounded set!! It is a shame that i found the Ventenner set disappointing!! In my humble opinion the sound mix was terrible, there was no sound separation and the bass sounded too loud. I stood stage left left, then right and finally centre but the sound still sounded awful!! I think Ventenner are a good band, think NIN/Numan and the new album ”InVidia” is really good from what i have heard so far!! Track one is a screamer!!! I have seen them before at The Hope & Anchor in Islington and the sound there was a darn sight better!! maybe on this occasion the mix was slapdash so as to not upstage Skinny Puppy????”

”One other thing:- is there any chance Skinny Puppy T shirts could be made out of a better quality cotton?? A softer brushed cotton perhaps?? Just saying!!”

Skinny Puppy Set list:-

1:- Jahya

2:- Dogshit

3:- Fascist Jock Itch

4:- Death

5:- Tin Omen

6:- T.F.W.O.

7:- Curcible

8:- Hardset Head

9:- Village

10:- The Choke

11:- Worlock

12:- Killing Game

13:- Assimilate

14:- VX Gas Attack

15:- Candle

 

 

Links:-

http://skinnypuppy.com/

WAVE GOTIK TREFFEN 2017

WGT Banner

Venue:- The city Of Leipzig, Eastern Germany.

”Its that time of year again when the annual pilgrimage of Goths all converge on the city of Leipzig for 4 days of dark chicanery!! There will be bands, exhibitions, clubs, lectures, theatre and movies in over 50 venues across the four corners of the city. And there will be free travel on the trams and buses with your event pass as well, which means more bucks for your booze!!!! I will be here for a second time after an enjoyable jaunt last year. This year i shall get to see many new bands and old favourites and i’ll get to go to the venues i did not get to last year!! I said in a previous review that you need to go twice to get the full experience of the event plus the sights of Leipzig itself!! I remember last year getting lost a few times on the transport system and ending up taking a long trip to a venue that i could have gotten to more easily if only i’d taken a tram, ie The Felsenkeller. On the bright side i got to travel on a different rail line which will be handy for future use!! Who’s playing at this event i hear you ask!! Well we have a large assortment of sonic confectionery that includes The Mission, Desperate Journalist, Saigon Blue Rain, The Agnes Circle, VNV Nation, Revolting Cocks and Sex Gang Children to name but a few!! And of course loads of bands i’ve never heard of like Black Nail Cabaret and Bloody Dead and Sexy!! ” As of writing there are over 145 bands confirmed for this years festival, more will be added/or deleted as the events nears!! And again as of writing i do not know of what parties/clubs or DJ’s will be on the roster as yet but that should change over the coming days and weeks!!”

”Apart from the event the city of Leipzig has many things to keep you from descending into the cellar of boredom. You will probably have an exhibition at the central station, there is the Monument To The Battle Of Nations, The Panometer Leipzig, The Grassi Museum and if you are into football then there is the Redbull Arena!! There are Goths into football, i know cos i have met them : )”

See you there folks!!

Below are a few teasers for your aural delectation:-

LINKS:-

http://www.wgt-guide.de

http://www.sadgoth.com/overview-wgtfestival-prewgtmeeting.html

http://www.wave-gotik-treffen.de/english/info/info.php

http://www.hostelworld.com/findabed.php/ChosenCity.Leipzig/

https://www.facebook.com/events/122977274790719/

http://lostinleipzig.com/use-tram-bus/

http://www.bayerischer-bahnhof.de/en

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monument_to_the_Battle_of_the_Nations

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leipzig

MORTIIS LIVE!!

Venue:-  Electrowerkz, London.

Date:- 18th March 2017

Band Members:-
Havard Ellefsen
Levi Gawron
Tim Van Horn

MortiisOilify

”All i can say about this show was that it was a much better show than the previous show i saw last year at The Garage in Highbury Corner. This show should have been at the aforementioned venue but it was changed! I’m glad it was because sound mix was so much better! The set was as energetic as usual and workman like! Every note, every drumbeat every phrase of the vocals were on the money!! I thoroughly enjoyed the set and it’s energy and all three members of Mortiis exuded their own kind of charisma!!Most of the set was tracks from the latest Album called ”The Great Deceiver” Standout tracks for me include:- ”Too Little Too Late” , a piece of aural art that has the feel of a piece created using varying layers of different grade sandpaper, rough in places and as smooth as a finished door knob! The last 60 seconds is pure head nodding bliss!!  ”The Great leap” is another awesome track!! 1-2-3-4 THUMP 1-2-3-4 THUMP with a cheese wire sinew winding it’s way through the body, i have an image now of a body on kebab skewer flailing and thumping to the bass!! ”The Ugly Truth” is very Rob Zombie/Ministry, it has a ”Jesus Built My Hotrod” feel to it!! ”Demons Are Back” I’m burning up inside the demons are back!! This just sums up how  i feel today!! And this is the best medicine to purge!!! The whole track is a catharsis but from around 3 minutes 30 i start to feel the demons getting weaker…..”

MortiisBW6

 

Setlist

 

”it has been  a great privilege to see Mortiis twice in the past year, a great band that i hope to see more of in the future, especially at Wacken!!”

 

LINKS:-

https://www.facebook.com/officialmortiis/

All other links can  be found through the Facebook page.

VNV NATION LIVE!!

Venue:- The Scala, Kings Cross, London.

Date:- 26th February 2017

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”I am going to write this review without any research, just raw as it materialised from the inner parts of my brain!! I’ve not been to the Scala since the early part of this century and that was to see Brendan Perry, he of Dead Can Dance. It was packed then, it is packed to the rafters now!! I’ve known of the existence of VNV Nation since that latter stages of the 90’s but i have never consciously gravitated towards their music. Sure, i may have heard something at the Slimelight or The Electric Ballroom or Reptile but I’ve not done an internet search or sifted through their Cd’s in a music shop or been drawn towards their  stuff on Spotify etc!!  What can i say about them here? They are the musical equivalent of Black Forest Gateau!! i like Black Forest Gateau, if there is a BFG at a party i’ll gravitate towards it! i will cut myself a slice and consume with glee!! i will quiver at the sugar rush and then go back for  a second slice!! I will do that eye rolling thing and start bellowing ”oh, oh, oh my gosh!!” One mouthful into the third slice and i start to feel sick, the urge feeling in the back of the throat starts to assert itself so i have to put the plate down and walk away from the offending article!! That’s VNV Nation!! Pounding bass drum and textured synth filigree, but the vocals seem samey! i feel that there is no resolution when the vocals go off on a roll, i feel there is a build up of tension but no release!! i personally end up feeling frustrated, it’s like a good thing and getting too much of it, you know what i mean?? The vocalist is a showman though, he can work a crowd! He had the knack of rebooting flagging enthusiasm and getting the crowd to sing at various points. Also i was brought onside at the beginning when he said that people could film/photograph the show but don’t block the view of those who have spent good money to see a band and not see a QHD/AMOLED image of the band on a bloody smartphone screen!! i do find that annoying! Wardruna were saying the same thing when i saw them back in November i think it was, for the most part the crowd respected this request!! As an aside, the crowd were very polite tonight!! Apologising for getting in my way when i took photos, holding doors open, picking things up when i dropped them etc!!”

”To sum up i’d say that VNV Nation are a band that i will listen to on occasions but i do not thing they will become a favourite!!”

7/10

LINKS:-

https://www.facebook.com/VNVNation/

http://www.anachronsounds.de/

Ministry Live!!

Venue:- The Kentish Town Forum, London, UK

Date:- 20/8/2016

NO unauthorised use of Images!!!!

Al Jourgensen

Al Jourgensen

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

”I didn’t know if i’d make this show! I sent numerous emails to different agencies requesting photo passes and not one had the decency to email back with a positive or negative response, which i find is disgraceful!! Not knowing if i had got a pass or not i decided to go to the show anyway, with my not so good back up camera, i was not expecting a pass to be waiting for me, and a massive hangover from the night before. When i arrive at the venue the security assumed that i was press and ushered me inside the venue to get my pass, which was a good start!! I tell the girl behind the glass who i was working for and she looks through a long list, my name is not on it!! Another girl looks through the list again and again my name is not there! Finally she radios for advice and then picks up a clip board, what’s underneath? A photopass!! Brilliant i thought! Why can’t these people email confirmation, emailing is so easy and it takes no more than 30 seconds to send one, i know i’ve done it!!”

 

Al Jourgensen

Al Jourgensen

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

”Anyway, on to the show! Ministry had just taken to the stage when i arrived, i could hear the loud raptures of the crowd as the trademark abrasiveness commenced! I fought my way through the dense crowd to the front, entered the photo pit and took 31 photos with my shit camera for 3 songs! One photo i did not get was when the bassist flipped me the bird, the camera conked out temporarily! The band were up for a great show and so were the crowd, there was plenty of energy directed at the stage, lots of air punches and horn gestures! I’m not au fait with all Ministry’s out put but i remember NWO, Just One Fix, Stigmata and as an encore Psalm 69. Most of the tracks got my foot stomping and my head banging especially the aforementioned tracks!! There was a great energy in the venue and it was packed to the rafters. Thoroughly good show and i’m glad i went!!”

 

 

1:- Hail to His Majesty (Peasants)

2:- Punch in the Face

3:- PermaWar

4:- Rio Grande Blood

5:- Señor Peligro

6:- LiesLiesLies

7:- Waiting

8:- N.W.O.

9:- Just One Fix

10:- The Missing

11:- Deity

12:- Stigmata

13:-Thieves

Encore 1:-

14:- Psalm 69

15:- So What

16:- Khyber Pass

Encore 2:-
17:- Gates of Steel
(DEVO cover)

 

Links:-

http://www.aljourgensen.com

http://www.facebook.com/ministry

 

spotify:album:4iXQPvKToQ3krCirQoW6I9

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mortiis Live!!

Date:- 28/5/2016

Venue:- The Garage, Highbury Corner, Islington, London, Uk.

Support:- Die Kur, Ventenner and Seraph Sin

 

”Short and sweet this review!! Just like the support for Mortiis, short and sweet! Just enough music from each band on the bill to wet the appetite and get us all ready for the main course! And the main course, Mortiis was mesmerising, in my opinion!! Havard Ellefsen is a seasoned performer, every movement, every dread shake, every shake of the finger was carried out with a purpose, nothing was put on, nothing felt fake, no going through the motions here, this was a real visceral spectacle that had the front row staring glassy eyed with satisfied smiles. Die Kurs set went down well with the crowd, another no nonsense set with no distracting frills or frippery followed by Ventenner, a band i have known about but not heard before! There set was hard and  pulse like with an interesting use of abrasive guitar textures floated of the top of the back beat like rusty gossamer strands! Seraph Sin, the penultimate band on i have never heard of before, i thought they were Italian but in actual fact they were from Scotland. There is a NIN vibe running through all the bands, some more than others, apart from Mortiis! They sound like, ermmm, well, Mortiis!!!”

 

DieKurBW3

Die Kur

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

VentennerBW1

Ventenner

 

SeraphSinBW1

Seraph Sin

 

MortiisBW5

Mortiis

 

MortiisBW6

Mortiis

 

 

LINKS:-

http://www.diekur.net

http://www.ventenner.com

https://www.facebook.com/SeraphSin

https;//facebook.com/officialmortiis/info