METALTOWN 2013 – Sverige, Göteborg
- by Jorgen Garmann
- Posted on 14-07-2013
This years edition of Gothenburgs Metaltown had quite a diverse lineup. There where some killers, some thrillers and a couple of fillers.
One of the announced killers was of course the mighty Motorhead with main man Lemmy in front. They where the sole reason me and my company decided early this spring to go so it was quite a downer when they unfortually had to cancel but hey, the undisputed king of rock & roll is pushing 67 so fair is fair. Lemmy does not cancel if its absolutely demanded by the doctor and this was one of those times.
We all hope he recovers well and will be able to perform on they´re planned gig in Oslo in december later this year.
To be honest there was not mutch else that was interesting on the bill this thursday evening except from fellow norwegians Trbngr with new frontman Tony Sylvester.
I witnessed the "resurrected" Trbngr last year at Kollen Fest when the where warming up before Kiss and they did not impress then like they did back in the days.
Just before they entered the stage it started to rain and the temperature dropped by a few degrees but that did not stop them from coming out guns blasting. With a setlist propped with old goodies and some new "not so" goodies they took the denim wearing audience by storm. The energy level was just below the roof and that important considering the climate at the moment.
Frontman Tony was on fire with ongoing babble between songs that seemed to go well with both the devoted Turbojugend and the rest of the crowd.
As the set went on we got more and more wet so when the rolled on with the legendary I Got Erection we decided to head back into town and check out the Gothenburg metal scene instead.
We where of course sorry to hear later that Motorhead drummer Micky Dee sat in on their replacement band Mustach set but the bad weather was making the decisions this day.
The weather gods had luckily another plan for friday and when we entered the festival area the sun was shining and all of yesterday was forgotten.
On the bill today was grindcore legends Carcass, mysterious and brilliant Ghost and maybe the headliner for many this year, Slipknot.
Metaltown is known for its diverse lineup and that means they also attract a very broad range of people with quite different tastes.
First band out of the gate was Asking Alexandria. They seemed to have quite a big following but for me personally this does not work out so during their set and next band All That Remains my focus was mostly on other things than music but it´s without doubt that their blend of death (with a hell lot of breakdowns), thrashy riffing, triggered drums and some NU on top (maybe deathcore is the correct term here) sure attracted some attention among the swedes becuse it was packed in front both their stages.
Next band out the gate was an old lost favorite of mine, swedens own Soilwork. Their "Figure number Five" did get quite some playtime when it got released 10 years back or so and it´s been a while since I last vitnessed them live. I have also not heard any of their new stuff so I must say the experience was quite mixed. Their old stuff is still good and the aforementioned album holds the test of time. Their newer stuff is not my cup of tea but all in all they deliverd good. The sound was great and all instruments where prominent and easy to decipher even though we sat quite far away.
Then, finally, at last! One of the major reasons to visit Metaltown this year was up. The mighty Carcass, one of if not THE ultimate band in my book among the more extreme acts that emerged in the late 80´s/early 90´s.
Bill Steer and Jeff Walker (the only two original remaing members) entered the stage with bravour and their setlist was packed with classics. I had to fight my way to the pit in front, among the mostly older attendees at this years Metaltown to get the most out of classics like Corporal Jigsore Quandary, Incarnated Solvent Abuse, No Love Lost, Tools of the Trade and of course Genital Grinder. The sound was perfect and even though we did not get any new material (Carcass will release their long awaited sixth opus later this year) this was just so dirty rotten brilliant and nostalgic that I am out of words. Full score on all accounts.
Next up was the energic and quite funny Danko Jones.
His stage presence is massive and he knows how to keep the crowd on it feet with easy listening hard rock combined with funny bantering between songs. I have vitnessed Danko a couple of times before so his set came as no suprise on both performance and content. He fitted the bill perfectly and he made a lot of the older people nod their head along as he for me personally just was an appetizer for what was to come next.
The only drawback to both the Carcass gig and the one everyone was looking forward to was that it was to early in the day. Carcass played around 18 hundred and both them and Ghost deserved not to play in full sunshine for making their presence more appealling, but this is by far more important to Sweden´s Ghost. Their blend of heavy metal incorporated with satanic settings and scenery have made them bona fide rockstars in their masked disguises. Their combination of pop and metal riffing with an unmistakeable vocal on top works to the max and their latest release is just an masterpiece from start to stop (yes, even the Abba cover is great).
Personally I was more into their debut from 2011 "Opus Eponymous" but after hearing the new material live I am not so sure anymore. This is just epic, old school metal that makes it more interessting when they flavor it with a deep satanic theme.
Marduk is a band that demands respect and their unrelenting black metal is just a wall of sound that crushes all that is present. The quartet may be the truest among the true and their set had all that is nescessary. Buzzing guitar, blast beats from another dimension and the typical ultra necro vocal that when put together demands some practice to enjoy.
Black metal can be performed on many different levels but it´s not many that do it the Marduk way. Pure evil energy was filling the Close-Up tent and ear plugs was a required tool. A very enjoyable set with material that contained variety. Horns up!
Last but least, the main event for (almost) all of the 15000 people that had gathered on this godforsaken land this sunny friday, Slipknot.
This eightteen legged monster that allways goes all in when it comes to shock performances may not interest me much on a musical level but they sure do know how to entertain. With three guys doing their own thing seperatly on percussion, two guys riffing away at max speed and a frantic vocalist on top you just can´t ignore the energy this behemoth create on stage. I lost track of Slipknot after "Vol.3" so my knowledge of their materiel is sparse at best but some songs did get recogniced and I must admit I did nod my head a couple of times.
I have never seen so many Slipknot shirts on one day before so that they are popular in Sweden is without doubt. It was just stacked in front of the scene and as far as the eye could see in the dark. The sound was crisp and clear and the cheering inbetween was massive so I can just assume that the packed audience did get what they came for and more.
In short summary, most probably a perfect ending on the second day of Metaltown, a festival that I will for sure visit again in the years to come.