KARMØYGEDDON 2017 – Day 3 – Kopervik
The sleep-breakfast-shower-sleep ritual repeated itself on Saturday as well, since going through photos and selecting some takes way longer than expected and even if I left early from the festival, I ended up staying rather late. But at least I made it again in time for the first band on the small Scandic stage – Kolted. This band had played the last concert the evening before, and I actually find it quite a good idea to place them again the day after. Maybe not so easy for the band members to be back on stage in such short time, but a big advantage for the crowd. Kolted seems to be delivering a playlist made of metal covers, dedicating some of them to the crazy festival organizers. I’m pretty sure the Ozzy and Therapy? sounds were much better received the night before, but the guys had fun either way and it was an enjoyable opening for the day.
For the Ainarikiar project, I got to notice that all of a sudden a bunch of little kids with colored headphones were all over the audience. I don’t know if all of them were related to the many band members, but it was surely cute to look at them and see how they react to a metal concert. Ainarikiar is a one-man project from the west coast of Norway, founded by former songwriter, vocalist and guitar player of Gravemachine; Eirik Svendsbø. But on stage, it became a many-men project since all the crazy elements in the music certainly demanded a lot of instruments in order to deliver the epic tunes. I briefly heard the tunes before and liked them. After the live performance, I’m set on getting very familiar with them and to pay attention to their future releases. The music is simply brilliant!
BACKSTREET GIRLS live @ Karmøygeddon Metal Festival 2017
(Photo: Stig Pallesen)
The little stage became even smaller when Backstreet Girls took over and the vocalist, Bjørn Müller, seemed to be too tall for the place. The band delivered rock and catchy tunes, invited Tore Braseth and one more guy on stage and made it all look like fun and rock’n’roll so that the crowd would have another good reason to party for the day. I think the musicians could probably perform until late evening if they wanted to.
I had to leave before the end though, in order to catch Moonspell on the main stage. I’ve seen Moonspell on various stages, performing either ‘normal’ or anniversary shows and one thing is for sure – the Portuguese guys never take anything as just another show. They’re impeccable everytime. They give it all. And they never forget to say thank you and to show how humbled they are by the attention and the recognition they are getting from the crowd. I am not sure how old the trick performed with the mirrors over the audience is, but it surely works nice during the set. Yet, Vampiria is never again the same after having had seen it performed in Transylvania. Norwegians don’t know how to scream.
GREEN CARNATION live @ Karmøygeddon Metal Festival 2017
(Photo: Andrea Chirulescu)
For personal reasons I skipped Brainstorm and returned for my personal highlight of the festival, Green Carnation. While somewhere deep inside my heart I was hoping they’d play a mixed setlist, I was still very happy when I recognised the first chords of Light of Day, Day Of Darkness and knew I’m up again for one dreamy hour. The band has performed the song about 5 times last year and by now everything flows easily and naturally. The song per se is not a happy piece, but this doesn’t stop the band members to display the joy of being on stage and delivery every note with high intensity and big smiles. The ‘woman’ part in the middle of the song is greatly replaced by a bouzouki piece which is so deep and hunting and ends way too soon. Like the whole show, afterall. Even a one hour song can feel like way too little.
BORKNAGAR live @ Karmøygeddon Metal Festival 2017
(Photo: Stig Pallesen)
More progressive music was coming on the main stage, this time under Borknagar trademark. The band with members all over Norway has spent a good time touring lately after the release of their 2016 Winter Thrice which was well received and offers some really nice live pieces, where the multitude of voices on stage combine very well with the even bigger number of instruments. It is always fascinating to watch/listen the vocal variations given by the ICS Vortex, Athera and Lars Nedland (whose nickname I couldn’t find).
The Finns in Insomnium were up next, but I did have to find a suitable dinner time so it had to be their concert, so that I could be back in time for the small stage concert of Rendezvous Points. I’ve seen them opening for Leprous and they did do an amazing job back then and now I can only notice how much they have grown in their stage presence and boldness, as they seemed talented enough to learn from experience. With really beautiful vocals by Geirmund Hansen, the band offers a great combo of complex and advanced melodies and they execute them in style. I don’t think I felt any surprise realising that the drummer, Baard Kolstad, has just finished an intense concert a little longer than an hour before. He already proved he has a duracell like stamina.
SATYRICON live @ Karmøygeddon Metal Festival 2017
(Photo: Stig Pallesen)
The main headliner of Karmøygeddon this year was probably Satyricon and they managed to fill up the concert area and make it impossible to find anyone to talk to during their performance. Since I am not a fan, I tried to spend some time after photo time was over and see if I can get into the concert mood. But it always feels so artificial that it made me leave very fast. There’s no passion in that concert, in my opinion.
ROSS THE BOSS live @ Karmøygeddon Metal Festival 2017
(Photo: Stig Pallesen)
I returned to watch Ross the Boss, or Ross Friedman, one of the founding members of Manowar, who now, together with his current band members, performs Manowar songs live, to the delight of the audience. I was familiar with some of the songs but the way the vocal was performed with rather high notes and screams, made it rather dull and unpleasant to my ears. Most likely my bad for having only covers with deeper voices in mind. But watching a metal legend in action was surely a pleasant sight, especially since the energy on stage was so good for that concert and made it for a grand closing act from my point of view. A Maiden tribute started on the smaller stage, but I didn’t find the energy to fight my way up there and see how that went.
On an ending note, I have to go back. I have to experience this Karmøygeddon spirit again. And then again. It was surreal and beyond pleasant. I only know of another festival who offers such joy to the attendees – Dark Bombastic Evening in Romania – but the music styles are completely different. Hats off and thumbs up to the Karmøygeddon organizers and gigantic thanks for the hard work to put such an event together.