Flights of The Electribird

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Chugging Metal at Rockstage Festival 2013

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Noticed the changes? I figured that I needed to leave the nest once in a while to get better at what I do and decided to do some people a favour and listen to some music. Nothing puts me in a working mood more than Heavy Metal, so when I was told about this new local band, I couldn’t resist the temptation to cough up some money for tickets and fly to the location of their gig.

Since I’ve never been to a nightclub before in my entire life, the scene was entirely new to me. I’ve never been on a list to a place like this before and never thought I ever would be, but this time I was. My companion for the evening and I went in, payed the coat-check woman and went casually into an almost half-empty partyroom with a small stage and a slightly-lit bar, where you could buy drinks that costs about as much as the value of gift certificates at any posh store in the nearest mall. The second band, Maleficio, was already playing, because we arrived a bit late. What a shame, I was curious about the first band, Lost Seconds, but there’s nothing I can do about that now. Still, Maleficio was a good way to start my evening, so I can’t complain, even though the bottle of fake blood the singer covered himself with made his guitar a bit too slippery for him to hold steady.

A Bloody Good Start!

Maleficio – not bad for a bloody mess!

I noticed that the next few bands made the same mistake before entering the stage. Their singers forgot to prepare their voices well enough before singing (or roaring), because their vocals where a bit off during their first songs. The singer in Eta Carinae started off as a tiger kitten and ended the performance like a panther…

Eta Carinae - nice kitties!

Eta Carinae – nice kitties!

… the singer in Oak sang like Tarzan most of the time…

Oak - Tarzan would be so proud!

Oak – Tarzan would be so proud!

… and it was hard to tell if the singer in Descending Chaos was trying to roar or scream in parcel tongue.

Descending Chaos - chaotic enough for Harry Potter.

Descending Chaos – chaotic enough for Harry Potter.

Still, the music of these bands wasn’t too bad and they did what they could to keep the tiny crowd interested. Since it was Easter Eve, Eta Carinae happily shared an Easter egg with the crowd…

Eta Carinae treats the audience with more than just music.

Happy Easter from Eta Carinae!

… and what kind of rock festival doesn’t have its bunch of show-boaters? If anyone deserves extra credit for this, it’s Descending Chaos, because their singer was energetic enough to do everything from dedicating a song to a girl hidden in a corner somewhere to rampaging off-stage without his shirt on. If there were more people in the nightclub, it might have been a bit more entertaining, but in this case it was a bit much. At least their music impressed a lot of people, especially my companion, who wanted to go to their next gig.

If there was some kind of Heavy Metal that I did not expect to see or hear at this festival, it was something nostalgic. The boys of Shotgun Sally got the attention of several girls (girlfriends, I assume) before their gig even started and attracted a slightly bigger crowd already from the start. Not only did their music have a 1980’s-1990’s style to it, they even dressed like bands from the same decades! Call me old-fashioned, but I enjoyed listening to these guys from start to finish.

Shotgun Sally - too good for my old camera...

Shotgun Sally – too good for my old camera…

Among all of the bands I saw perform at Rockstage Festival, none of them kept things as professional as the next band, Chugger, and it’s no wonder that I’ve been seeing their name pop up daily lately. This band was so balanced, no bandmember outshined the others more than necessary. Even the singer’s roaring could be identified as words, which is great for someone like me, because I’m almost def when it comes to lyrics! This band may be new to the public, but the bandmembers are no rookies. Well done, Chugger!

Chugger - no outshiners, just pure metal!

Chugger – no outshiners, just pure metal!

You always expect the last band on stage to be grander than the previous ones, but this was not the case with As They Arrive. These eager boys acted like complete newbies on-stage after their first song, which sounded like something they ripped off from some mainstream band and slashed to bits. Oddly enough, I can’t help picturing these boys performing at some famous talk-show in the future and it wouldn’t surprise me if they do someday, just to make me eat my words. If they do, I’ll laugh happily and congratulate them personally when the day comes, but at the moment I’m just going to congratulate them for the crowd they managed to gather before my companion and I went to get our jackets.

As They Arrive - in need of more practice, I'm afraid.

As They Arrive – in need of more practice, I’m afraid.

As good as the bands were, I’m pretty sure this rock festival could have been better. But then again, who am I to complain? I had fun! It’s not everyday you get to listen to non-mainstream music and I don’t really care for large crowds. Still, it shouldn’t cost that much to get a drink, no matter if you’re a poor teetotaller or a rich drunkard, and the bands deserved a bigger audience. Other than that, the event was well-planned, none of the bands I saw were booed at (except Chugger by some joker, who chanted “Black Sabbath!” for the fun of it) and the audience – drunk and sober – loved the show. I’d gladly see everyone of these bands live again and hope you get a chance to see or listen to them too.


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