- Atomic Death Squad release debut demo for free download
- Waiting Room release posthumous EP
- “Brutal shit from two cunts wallowing in Ballarat”
- Tim Yatras (Germ, Woods of Desolation, Grey Waters, etc) is releasing a free ambient ambient trilogy
- Battle Pope vs Jesus Christ Posse (split)
- Battle Pope/Jesus Christ Posse split up for free download
- No Anchor release “the most No Anchor of all the No Anchor records”
- Nontinuum’s new (free) EP is one of the best things you’ll hear all year
- Free Devil’s Kitchen compilation feat. King Parrot, Shellfin, Winterun and more
- Arcane and Caligula’s Horse members release superb post-rock/ambient album
Articles : Metal Obsession in Europe 2012
The team from Metal Obsession will converge, once again, on the European heavy metal festival circuit and whilst this year’s trip will be shorter than past years (hey, we’re not made of money), it should be a blindingly good, headbanging experience.
Festivals we will cover this year:
- Wacken Open Air (Germany)
- Masters Of Rock (Czech Republic)
MASTERS OF ROCK (Czech Republic): PREVIEW
This is our first trip to MASTERS OF ROCK for the 10th anniversary of this ever growing festival, located in the Moravian countryside in the South East corner of the Czech Republic. We’ll be flying into Prague then hiring a car for the four hour trip through Brno to our hotel accommodation in Zlin which gives us about a 15 minute car trip to the festival in the small town of Vizovice (I hope the car is insured! – Non Attending Metal Obsession Editor). “Yes, the armour plated, tinted window car is insured…… Heavily ” Just joking – should be fun.
Unlike many festivals in Europe that are not only getting bigger but are diversifying like never before, MASTERS OF ROCK keeps things simple and straightforward with a focus on power and female fronted metal with touches of thrash and hard rock. This is four day, full featured festival that starts between 10am and 11am each day (except the opening Thursday that starts at 2pm) and finishes at the ‘energy drink’ inducing time of 2am. YES!
The main stage is called the RONNIE JAMES DIO stage and the headlining bands for the four nights are WITHIN TEMPTATION (Thursday), EDGUY (Friday), NIGHTWISH, and ARCH ENEMY (Sunday). These four are surrounded by KAMELOT, THIN LIZZY, and BLOODBOUND (Thursday), EXODUS, UNISONIC, and PAIN (Friday), KORPIKLAANI, STRATOVARIUS, and DEATHSTARS (Saturday), and GOTTHARD and SABATON on the Sunday night.
Neck = Sore = Massage. In particular as we’ll be leaving at 5am on the Monday morning.
Mixed into the throng of big name bands, the festival includes PAUL D’ANNO, HELL, FIREWIND, SIRENIA, FREEDOM CALL, and a terrific band called SEBASTIEN that features Roland Grapow (HELLOWEEN) and Appolo Papathanasio (FIREWIND) doing guest performances.
Stage number two, called the ALFEDUS MUSIC stage , features mostly local Czech bands who typically start the day’s offerings. NEONFLY (a terrific little power metal band from the UK) features alongside ARCHONTES (from Russia), TRISTANA and MAD FREQUENCY (from Slovakia) to Czech bands such as EAGLEHEART, CHAOS IN HEAD, CHECKPOINT, DYING PASSION and many more. Yep, I don’t know half of them either but we’ll bring you a full report after we’re done.
Check out the full list at:
Following MASTERS OF ROCK, we’ll conduct some European sightseeing (in Turkey and Greece) before returning to Europe’s largest metal festival, WACKEN OPEN AIR.
WACKEN OPEN AIR (Germany): PREVIEW
Who knows how many times we’ve been to Wacken. My first ever trip was in 1999 followed by 2000, and 2007. Over that time I’ve seen the festival become more international and more diverse. The number of non-Europeans attending has increased dramatically over the years and it gets harder and harder to get a ticket. Thankfully, the awesome organisation looks after the media extremely well.
The festival’s growth is a double-edged sword of course but there’s no denying that the biggest European metal festival remains the biggest.
The great thing about Wacken, in comparison to other metal festivals, is that the growing pains of making a festival larger and more welcoming are all but gone. This is the festival that other festivals look too. This year though, whilst from a headlining perspective have done an outstanding job once again, the festival looks elsewhere for the range of second tier bands. It’ll be interesting to see the results once the festival finishes on Saturday 4th of August.
Wacken starts on Wednesday 1st of August and features the Metal Battle on both the smaller W.E.T. and Headbanger stages. DANKO JONES offers up his spoken word whilst the mix of movies, role playing, viking weaponary battles, knight tales, fire shows, and the highland games keeps the metal community a community. And the people get involved and love it.
Thursday the 2nd of August is where the METAL begins – it’s a slow build up and whilst all four stages are utilised, the concerts start in the late afternoon; letting the large international crowd get used to what’s to come. Featuring on Thursday is U.D.O. (a man I haven’t seen since the late 90s), SAXON, and SEPULTURA. Swedish pop-metal sensations AMARANTHE are also there alongside CHANNEL ZERO (I love this band), Circle II Circle (featuring former SAVATAGE singer Zak Stevens) and a round of metal karaoke (no, we won’t be participating – we want the crowd to remain).
Friday. So much to see, lots of time but it’s the time to map out what to see and when. HENRY ROLLINS is bringing his spoken word tour to Wacken which will be something special. Aura Noir and GHOST BRIGADE headline the Headbanger stage whilst GEHENNA and FORBIDDEN do the same on the W.E.T. stage. Oh, and the beautiful Liv Kristine headlines the Party Stage with LEAVES’ EYES. The big stages? The Black Stage has OPETH and DIMMU BORGIR (with orchestra). Having seen DIMMU back in 2007 I’ve never seen a crowd so mesmerised (matched only by the unseeing watchmen, BLIND GUARDIAN back in 2007). Warrel Dane is back with SANCTUARY too. Over on the True Metal stage we have IN FLAMES (True Metal? – Genre Picking Editor), HAMMERALL (that’s better – Genre Picking Editor), THE BOSS HOSS, and KAMELOT with D:A:D taking the plunge too (I can’t wait to hear No Fuel Left for the Pilgrim tracks!).
Following what will be a short night’s sleep, Saturday the 4th of August will feature lots of cool bands: KYLSEA, DJERV, DIO DICIPLES (Ripper Owens), WINTERFYLLETH will be housed in the Headbanger stage whilst MANTICORA, ELECTRIC WIZARD, MOONSPELL, NASUM, and WARRIOR SOUL will squat their socialist behinds on the W.E.T. stage. PARADISE LOST, WATAIN, and DARK FUNERAL will be on the Party stage.
The night of nights though, is on the Black Stage: DELAIN (new album out now), NAPALM DEATH, SIX FEET UNDER, CRADLE OF FILTH, and AMON AMARTH whilst the True Metal Stage features GAMMA RAY, AXEL RUDI PELL, TESTAMENT, THE SCORPIONS (for their final ever open air show in Germany), MACHINE HEAD, and a surprise act (who I’m hoping is UNSONIC with Kai Hansen and Michael Kiske as Gamma Ray is already in town).
The full list is here:
We will bring you a full report plus photos of both festivals once all is said and done. You can keep up to date with our European journey via our official Facebook page with rants and reviews included, once we arrive in Europe.