Summer Breeze Open Air 2010 – day 1
copyright text: Silviapd
copyright photo’s: Monica Duffels
Every year Summer Breeze Open Air in Dinkelsbuhl manage to find an outstanding line-up of bands. What means 180 bands in one weekend, unexpected names, rising stars, and unique projects. The best opportunity to find a combination of bands you never see on tour.
Arriving on the Wednesday means that only the Party stage is open, a white tent next to the Main- and Pain stage on the other side. Its a dark mass for now, but in the morning it turns into a musical heaven.
Summer Breeze is located on a hill, and when you look down, you can clearly see how huge the festival ground really is. The camping side covers the whole grade and logistically it is very wise to situate both stages next to each other. So it is easy to switch between the bands. And there is the VIP tent, our second home, in between. That makes surviving a four day festival so much easier.
The organisation wants to promote upcoming artists, and one of them is the opener of the festival on the Mainstage Barren Earth. Finnish masters assemble of respected musicians. There is vocalist Mikko, wellknown from Swallow The Sun, guitarist Sami Yli-Sirniö from Kreator, and keyboardist Kasper ex-Amorphis. With Curse Of The Red River they delivered a very strong debut album, what’s very promising for the future. No wonder that it is crowded in the early afternoon with a burning sun on your shoulders.
Full force on opener ‘Curse Of The Red River’ where Mikko impress with his deep aggressive grunts, covering his eyes under his cap. Opeth meets his darker sister today. The sound is not always well balanced, especially during the clean backing vocals from Sami Yli-Sirniö.
Impressive team work from guitarists Janne and Sami on this guitar dominated song, where the ‘screaming’ high tones stays in your head. Both men are meters separated from each other, but there is a strong interaction: they have such an own style, bounding it into a technical adrenaline rising song. Drummer Marko has the flue, but his sound is fast, groovy and very dynamic. Unbelievable how fast he goes, even during his background vocals, impressive.
It is an once-in-a-lifetime moment for many metal fans to hear the songs live in the original formation. Naturally it is important to have a strong united band on stage and Barren Earth retains the attention, making you curious how the set will develop. Impressive when you consider that they rarely play together, caused by the long tours their bands make in the world.
It is a short, powerful set where Barren Earth shows to be a strong adversary to all Finnish bands that day, and even more. ‘Our Twilight’ is the titletrack from the EP. Live on stage it gets an extra dimension, because it is clear that all the members are doing this mostly for the fun and alloy their talent for that reason. Kasper on piano has such a crystal clear sound, and it makes you shiver even on such a hot day. Bassplayer Olli is very vivid on stage, jumping around all the time.
‘ Forlorn Waves’ asks a lot from all the members with technical solo’s, even faster grunts and it must have been energetic process during the writing process. It doesn’t reflect much on the members, they are frozen behind their microphone. Perhaps the stage is too big, although frontman Mikko changes positions with Janne and Olli.
Then ‘ Flicker ‘ is one of the most progressive songs, switching from mid-tempo doomy atmosphere to a heavy groovy part with fast grunts and technical bas, guitar lines. The performance crows during the song, it seems the feedback from the crowd woke them up.
And all the power is there during ‘The Leer’ a more old-school song, dominated by Marko on drums and a strong rhythm section. On top of that a high guitar mixed with the clean vocals from Sami, in contrast of the dark grunts from Mikko.
There is a long instrumental part, where all the solo interactions come together, especially on stage you feel the vibe better and Mikko shows here very well that he is an excellent vocalist. The only remark is the fact that he isn’t such a great performer, because he shows a lack of interest when he smokes a cigarette and turns his back to the crowd.
During the last song ‘ Floodred’ Olli gets the attention, suddenly he surprises the crowd with his clean voice. A catchy ending of a short set, Barren Earth convinces strongly with a dynamic, melodic and technical impressive sound. They definitely have a stronger fan base since that day. T he kick-off from Summer Breeze 2010 is a fact and it was a highlight to see these Finnish musicians on one stage today.
Mikko Kotamäki– Vocals (Swallow The Sun)
Olli-Pekka Laine – Bass (Ex-Amorphis, Mannhai)
Kasper Mårtenson –Keyboards (Ex-Amorphis, Ben Granfelt Band)
Janne Perttilä– Guitar (Rytmihäiriö)
Marko Tarvonen – Drums (Moonsorrow)
Sami Yli- Sirniö – Guitar, backing vocals (Kreator, Waltari)
Napalm Death dominated the metal scene in the eighties with their typical grintcore sound. Vocalist Barny is still standing strong, angry at the world and his raw voice is so unique that you recognize them everywhere. Their power blows away the enthusiastic crowd.
From begin till the end they impress with their wall of music, without getting boring or predictable. Guitarist Mitch is in a good shape today and makes songs like Strong Arm, Deceiver, When All Is Said And Donelive even stronger than on the album. Personally I am happy that Silence Is Deafening is on the setlist as well.
Many well known hits are played, and it is a pleasure to be an eye-witness of this dynamic show, also because Barney is very talkative and creates a good atmosphere. Polite as always with his British accent and it sounds so much better than the screams and aggressive shouting parts from the American bands this weekend. Its totally a different world then, and after more than twenty years it is a fact that this band is going strong with a strong adrenaline and motivation in their bones, lots of respect for that!
An other uptempo band is Ill Nino with their roots in South-America, totally different in compare with other nu-metal artists. It is all about the adrenaline and how fast you can scream ‘ fuck.’ Unbelievable how often vocalist Christian Machado it repeats, till it irritates a lot. Nevertheless the whole Pain Stage is shaking and their sound is perfect.
All elements of a good show are there when they kick off with such a uncontrolled vibe, that only promise an erasing of anger and goorvy metal. Te Amo I Hate You has fast guitars, on top tortured grunts and grows into Corazon Of Mine when the drums transform in a heartbeat. The Latin roots, melodic parts mixed with nu-metal, creates an unique format. When the singers arms start to shake it proves that he screams his longs out, waving with his dreadlocks. There is a lot of emotion in a good way, it brings the energy you need to have a good festival vibe.
Finnish bands dominate the day a bit. Also The 69 Eyes are creating a catching sound, but aren’t progressive at all. They create a dark atmosphere, you also know from HIM. It isn’t a big surprise when he whole first row is filled with screaming girls and I wonder where they came from so sudden. The band has a good reputation, so I was curious to see them live on stage, but somehow they are disappointing me. Maybe its because of the provoked and slow voice from Jurki. He is creating a whole act around him, but I can’t take it very serious when he tries to be a second Elvis. The musicians are for sure very talented, but that is not good enough to impress for a whole hour.
Die Apocalyptischen Reiter is German proud with a reason, always they surprise me how popular they are. The whole field is packed. It’s been a long time since’ ‘ One Cold Winters Night’ ’ in Oberhausen, and today they have a spectacle with their metal meets folk influences. Their show is dynamic and there happens a lot on stage. It is hilarious to see a man sliding down with a big belly and a black mask on. Vocalist Fuchs screams too much, what makes the show indeed aggressive, but you have to like a raw voice on top of it.
There is a lot of interaction with the audience and I must say the crowd is amazing, showing that much energy at the end of a long day. Rammstein meets some German traditional roots and I guess you have to be more open minded than me to see the melodylines and become a real fan. It is a good entertaining moment, but not a musical challenge to me.
An other Finnish metal band Swallow The Sun personally requested to play the Party Tent instead of the bigger main stage, because they want darkness and less light. Expected an intense show what surrounds you like a black blanket, comfortable and scary at the same time.
Opener ‘These Woods Breathe Evil’ drags you down, not into the mud ,but to follow their songs and be open for the special atmosphere. Silouettes are standing there frozen against blue light. There is vocalist Mikko Kotamäki again, this time showing a totally different side of his voice. Still hanging over the microphone and smoking a cigarette with a thoughtless glance in his eyes.
Standing on a row, the band members let the music talks for itself in a way: they are simply standing there and don’t move at all during their intense performance. It suits the music very well, because you stay focussed on the little details. Like a absent smile from Markus Jamsen on guitar, in the corner. Aleksi Munter on keyboards is turning around to the drummer in the back, a moment of interaction.
From the side of the stage it is very impressive to see all those fans in the crowd, a strong mass of people, totally into the performance of five musicians. ‘Don’t Fall Asleep, Sleepless Swans and New Moon’ make the set strong with high guitars suddenly switching from a groovy to a minimalistic rhythm. Whispers are mixed with screams and grunts. Always searching for the contrasts, that is a master talent from these men. Especially the keyboards are a strong element in the doom, dark atmosphere in that combination.
It is impossible to analyse without sounding flat and not giving right to the story. It is about breathing, empathy and being a part of the music. The emotions are filling the whole tent easily, why?
Because Swallow The Sun knows their strength and they are so easy to get into like My Dying Bride on the other day. It is a talent you rarely find among musicians, to open up completely without a huge performance or mask between the one on stage and the crowd. Sadly enough I couldn’t be there during the promotion tour of ‘New Moon’ but they will return in December. To me it was the best band on the whole festival weekend!
Luckily ‘ we’ have Obituary to show the world what perfect death metal means. There is no band going strong for so long and still have a remarkable good reputation. They fulfil the expectations more than you can imagine! There is frontman John Tardy with his long blond hair, growling and screaming in a most melodic way. The whole setlist has a promise of high quality and lot’s of energy. Songs like Evil Ways, The End Complete and of course Slowly We Rot are played in a very uptempo, smooth set and close to perfection. In my opinion even better than on the albums.
The band is touring the world right now, and it is impressive how they find the motivation to give two hundred present today. Impressive, unforgettable and excellent promise for the future!
Subway To Sally comes with a lot of pyros to impress as a headliner on the main stage. Perhaps it is because I am not German, but to me their sound is totally a riddle, and even unbelievable why they are headliner of such a great day. It totally doesn’t fulfil the expectations you have from the last band on the big stage. Their rock from Potsdam is a bit flat, or maybe the impressions of the whole day are filling my head too much. The folk roots are there, and nowadays that combination with metal is very popular. Vocalist Eric Fisch sounds raw and enthusiastic toward the fans, but music wise it is not my cup of tea.
Clapping hands during Puppenspieler from the front till the back is very impressive, and Kleid Aus is a real hit and all the German fans are singing along. The violin from Silke makes it interesting to listen to. The traditional instruments like lute, mandolin, a small barrel-organ are very entertaining and definitely something extra, but the voice is the weakest point.
Behemoth was supposed to close the Pain Stage on this sunny Thursday, but unfortanatly one of their members became serious will. A good replacement is found in Endstille. Both bands have their roots in the old school black metal and created an unique sound over the years. A new record is in the making, but the band choices to have a diversity of songs. With their new vocalist Zingultus they found a well fitting member of the band and it doesn’t take much time to get used to his tortured voice, inclusive all the corpse-paint. Finally the day is over, a long intense festival edition and even more days to follow.
Thankword to: Summer Breeze Organisation, David Silverdust, Swallow the Sun and Barren Earth.