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Thursday, 20th September 2012 Unfortunately none of us was there on Thursday, but what we heard was that the Markthalle was full and the program was taken in very well. Over 3000 visitors enjoyed the lectures, workshops, and concerts. We can at least surely say that this was the case in the following two days.
Friday, 20th September 2012 (review & photos: Samira Alinto)
Reading: „Kumpels in Kutten“ and „Do it yourself“ with Bobby Schottkowski 17:30 - 18:30 (Great Hall)
Christian Krumm and Holger Schmenk got ex Sodom drummer Bobby Schottkowski as reinforcement for their reading from their book „Kumpels in Kutten“ and Krumm´s solo book „Century Media - Do it yourself, Die Geschichte eines Labels“. „Kumpels in Kutten“ is about the 80´s Ruhr area Heavy Metal bands, like Kreator and Sodom as well as the Rock Hard and Metal Hammer magazines thanking the Century Media. It is a really interesting book for fans of these bands.
The primary interest was on „Do it yourself“, where the history of the record label was told. Schottkowski didn´t have much to say on this subject. He did, however, tell a few anecdotes from the early years and he corrected some people´s view of how the labels and bands go together. When Krumm asked him about metal and commerce, Bobby asked him if the question was stated just to sell his book better, effectively dumbfounding Krumm. All in all, the reading was entertaining due to the commentary, but it didn´t really work up the appetite for the books.
Website: Kumpels in Kutten Website: Do it yourself
The Hamburg Metal Dayz got a very special opener in the form of Audrey Horne. The hard rock band from Bergen has cashed in a few prizes and those, who have seen them live, know that they will not be playing just as support in times to come. The charismatic singer, Toschie, gives his everything on and in front of the stage. He took away all indecisiveness from the crowd by going through the whole spectrum of emotions and the rest of the band rocked on as though there were no tomorrow. One rarely sees so much joy in performing on stage even thought the Markthalle was only filling up half way through the set. They found the way to enliven the crowd with „Charon“ and „Bridges & Anchors“ from their latest album. Then they played a few tracks from their hopefully soon to be released album. Especially the party starter „There Goes a Lady“ seemed to please. When they played their hit „Threshold“ from „Le Fol“, there were some Hamburgers singing along and Toschie let the rest of the band play as he joined the crowd to headbang and shake hands. Audrey Horne left the half full Markthalle with „Blaze of Ashes“. Well done!
Website: Audrey Horne
Meet & Greet and sideshow (Foyer)
As Rimfrost played parallel to Audrey Horne, I unfortunately missed them. Meanwhile, the line to the half hour meet & greet from Saxon was growing up to the snack bar by the entrance. Those, who only just arrived rather got themselves a drink and looked through the other activities.
There was a guitar to win at the WOA-Foundation-stand, Merch and a donation jar. The nice workers did not tire to explain everything there was to know about the foundation. Meaningful and interesting.
The lucky winner!
There was an exhibition of beautiful pictures of famous musicians on the walls. I have never seen Lemmy´s warts painted so realistically. Nice!
Yes, they´re still around. Prehistoric Hamburgers, even though only the singer and co-founder, Lars Ramcke is the only original member. Stormwarrior play classic power metal á la Helloween and had first-class sound -which was so throughout the whole festival- as well as home field advantage. There wasn´t a single long-haired viewer, who hadn´t an album from them. „Iron Gods“ from their hit album „Heading Northe“ really got the people going. Their simple chorus got even the usually stiff crowd growling along, which did a lot for the atmosphere. Classics, like „Signe of the Warlorde“ and „Heavy Metal Fire“ came in one after another. They finished off setting the mood for Saxon with the hard-hitting „Óðinn´s Warriors" from „At Foreign Shores. Really works up the appetite!
The crowd was pre-hyped from Stormwarrior and the expectations for the charismatic Biff Byford and co. were high. Even though Paul Quinn and Biff aren´t spring chickens, there were no signs of being over the hill in their performance. As Saxon is quasi the house-band of Wacken -it feels like they´re playing there every year- so one could think that the north German viewers would be somewhat fed up. Of course it´s something else to be in a concert in Markthalle, almost within hand reach, than to see them on the big festival stage. As soon as the first chords were struck, there was a tremendous amount of energy flowing to and from the stage. Tracks, like „Crusader“, „747 (Strangers in the Night)" and "Princess of the Night" as well as „Wheels of Steel", set the house on fire. The party lasted until the last notes of the closing number, „Solid Ball of Rock“. Great show!
Saturday 22th September 2012 (review & photos: Andreas Torneberg)
The third day of the first Hamburg Metal Dayz offered a very varied program of punk and rock to metal, everything at a high level and with bands that were on the ball and obviously had as much fun as the visitors. In the small Marx the temper was slightly subdued, but the more heat in the great hall.
The Metal-dayz span a wide range of genres - this project Megaherz from Munich exists with a changing line-up since 1993 and represents like Rammstein the Neue Deutsche Härte, bringing industrial and electronics together with rock and German lyrics. The Hanseatic Fanbase was numerously there and enjoyed the massive broadsides of the danceable hardness; cheerfully served by frontman Alexander "Lex" Wohnhaas. Of course, the hit like "Miststück" was in the package, as well as "Jagdzeit", to which a feminine attraction was dancing and singing on the stage.
Such female ingredients cruised seductively even twice at Devil´s Train - as in their well-visited video for the The Guess Who song "American Woman". Sex sells rock´n´roll. Since 2011 this band is fresh at the start, but as an engine driven by experienced musicians like Mystic Prophecy singer RD Liapakis and Stratovarius drummer Jörg Michael and bassist Jari Kainulainen the band plowed the fields of the U.S. hard rock style. Still, their brand is not quite established, so it initially lacked at the beginning on the influx of the audience, but with dedication and songs that run towards Whitesnake and Deep Purple, the hall filled soon. And for the male eyes there was just some to discover, too.
Website: Devil´s Train
The from Heidelberg originating band of Alex Kraft shakes the desert dust of spaghetti westerns over heavy rock and creates so since their first album 120 years ago (sorry, one too many zeros) their own world: German Cowboy Metal. The band had to stand fast for the stuck in traffic jam Perzonal War, therefore the sound check in civilian clothes had to be handle rather hurriedly. The microphone stands were reinforced with rifles; carved cattle skull and noose decorated the western ambience. And shortly thereafter, the band returned in Cowboy leather costumes. The music is just very original - even live the zelluloidic desert-sound and the wacky atmosphere came across well. Dusty, hard, dirty and fun. Even a small, rustic country song with banjo introduction was mixed into the wild rock/metal tunes. Yiehah!
Suddenly, the great hall was well-filled. The reputation of the punk rockers from Rheinberg, who during the past 22 years have made the German stages with socially critical songs uncertain, has conquered wide circles of publicity. Straight, direct, fast and catchy. Not necessarily insane rich of variations, but apparently just the right food for all who were looking for memorable, to shout along choruses. And, of course, for songs that represent clear opinions from and for the people. It was a big rumble, trampling, celebrating and rush on the front barricade near the stage. Oliver Meister and his men blew themselves a full hour of non-stop in good spirits.
Although they´ve released already 7 CDs, the four guys from North Rhine-Westphalia are still a kind of secret of the metal underground, seen as representatives of thrash metal. They were the ones that evening, where the show moved somewhat secondary to the rear, and no feminine curves, no costumes or hard-rock affectations were presented, but all the attention was invested in the music. Hard metal and nothing but metal, very varied and full of ideas was served. No choruses to sing along, no easy dance rhythms. Perzonal War made music for lovers of furious and to the same time exciting and subtle sound-thunderstorms.
Website: Perzonal War
Of course, here was pushed into the great hall and shoved, so that all fit inside. For 30 years and countless battles there is nothing additional to say about the Düsseldorf Metal Queen; that´s already part of general musical education. Accordingly, all generations were represented. Mrs. Pesch started from the beginning with pointers to 140 percent, whirled mane shaking across the stage, followed by the lenses of the many photographers in the ditch, and threw herself down at the barriers, where she sang with her fan-club in duet; Doro to touch. Bomb-happy she spread her radiant smile throughout the whole hall; there was even no chance for those in the far corners to escape from her spell. From the latest album was just "Raise your fist in the air", otherwise mainly older material, also from Warlock times as "All we are".
Conclusion: The organisers of the Reeperbahn festival and Wacken Open Air were within in the whole project with Hamburg Metal Dayz and hopefully there will be another one next year. The Stalker crew will definitely be there as sure as eggs.