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Inferno Metal Festival 2011 | FESTIVALPHOTO

 

 

Inferno Metal Festival 2011

 

2011-04-24 02:37 - Meshuggah live@Inferno festival 2011


Meshuggah live@Inferno festival 2011

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2011-04-24 02:36 - Napalm Death live@Inferno festival 2011


Napalm Death live@Inferno festival 2011

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2011-04-24 02:36 - Pentagram live@Inferno festival 2011


Pentagram live@Inferno festival 2011

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2011-04-24 02:33 - Day 3

After my 3rd edition at this festival I still can state that being at this festival in Oslo is one of the most appealing ways to spend the easter time so far. The only downside is that the weather decided to be incredibly good these days and being an indoor festival doesn't allow one to take much advantage of that - after the long Norwegian winter. But let's concentrate on the good parts and good music, which started today with a Trondheim based band, manifest. It's always sad to see the amount of energy on stage and the singer's attempts at involving the crowd, while the people who managed to get up and relocate to the stage at that time are in some sort of trance and barely respond with a head shake. So the mix of thrash and death rhythms and powerful deep growls couldn't really compete the effects of yesterday's beers.

It seemed a bit luckier for the Germans from Imperium Dekadenz who performed on the smaller stage and where the crowd seemed more packed in front of the stage. They delivered quite an atmospheric black metal sound, with nice and melodic interludes which felt a bit too long occasionally, and, if I remember correctly, some unexpected clean vocals at times. Interesting though to hear the response in the realm of Black metal from a non Norwegian band, especially since it was the only performance of the type for that day. On the main stage it was soon time for bands with many years of career to rock the place. First of them, from Florida, Malevolent Creation was formed in 87 and whose debut album, The Ten Commandments, was a reference one in the underground metal at its time. The growling skills of the singers were quite impressive and he got good reactions from the crowd both when introducing older and newer songs.

I didn't stay til the end as I wanted to catch some of the signing sessions of the day for the sake of photographing happy people, but I returned downstairs to John Dee to watch No Dawn's performance, a band who started back in 2002 with coversongs of bands like In Flames and At the Gates and who performed their own brutal death on the small stage. I had to run out rather quickly though as my eyes could no longer handle the smoke so I can't comment any more on their show. But I can, instead, say that watching the '71 based heavy metallers and doom pioneers from Pentagram was quite delightful. The crowd was on fire and was so cool to hear them sing along with familiar verses. I can understand why the guys on stage couldn't put a show for more than one hour, but that hour was incredibly fun to watch as Bobby Liebling would try to do something silly every few minutes. Obviously, he would totally succeed. They had a new guitarist and bass player for this tour, hence the chemistry on stage lacked some elements. It wasn't the highlight of the day, yet I guess I'll keep this concert as a nice live memory of a band who's been out there so long.

One hour later it was time for the most insane moshpits of the festival on the incendiary grind/hard/metal core of the Brits from Napalm Death. As usual, Mark Greenway seems to get his energy with each circular trip he makes on the stage and in his movements of an electrocuted person. Despite that his voice stays strong for the whole set. The only moments to see him standing still is between song, if he has a drink or says few words to the crowd. His speeches can be inspiring at times, about being open minded and about freedom, as most of the social and political themes they touch in their songs. The fast riffs nad punk like tempo of their short songs made the circle in front of the stage get bigger and bigger and by the end of the day I am sure I saw some purple eyes (can't guarantee this was the source though).

Time for the headliner of the day and last act of 2011 edition of Inferno - the Swedes from Meshuggah and their impossible combination of death, thrash, progressive and even jazz elements. All of them on downtuned 8 strings guitars and 5 string bass, while the drumming technique of Tomas Haake is one of the most impressive to watch live (provided you get a spot for that, which is not easy). Despite the crowd's insistent demands for New millennium Cyanide Christ, the track was not performed but they ended quite in style with Future Breed Machine which allowed us to hear Thordendal's screams and his breath controller device. As each time I saw them, the vocalist does a great job at accompanying the polyrhythms and insanely fast tempo changes and it's almost scary to see him rolling his eyes while he sings. I'm happy that Meshuggah made up for their absence last year and delivered such a great show at the end of the 4 days of extreme metal music. With the appropriate thanks to the organisers and the artists I'm stopping here with words and go to work on the bunch of photos I took. Oh, and don't forget the videos in this playlist:
http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=D90001F02B851E4F

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Nick Nick Written 2011-04-24 08:53:15
Great to read your reviews! I couldn´t go myself this year, I hope I can make it next year. Looking forward to all the photos. //Nick

 

2011-04-23 01:11 - Immortal live@Inferno festival 2011


Immortal live@Inferno festival 2011

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2011-04-23 01:11 - Atheist live@Inferno festival 2011


Atheist live@Inferno festival 2011

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2011-04-23 01:10 - Day 2

The second day of the yearly Easter metal festival in Oslo, Norway, has started off with the aggressive rock from Djerv, a band who started catching people's attention only in 2010 but have already made it on the main stage of this festival. It's a female fronted band and the confident presence of Agnete Kjølsrud, plus her powerful voice, brings a lot of enthusiasm to the crowd who managed to wake up this early (about 6 PM) and be present. Djerv received quite a good reaction to their melodic metal, heavy at times yet black enough to fit with the landscape. The peak point was probably the end of the show when she jumped off the stage and announced the crowd she's going to surf on them, making everyone pack in front of the stage to hold her. It was really a good warm up for the intense day.

I have to mention that I only paid a short visit to the small venue on this day, and only to see Ava Inferi for about 5 minutes. I know there's always good acts there, but it gets incredibly warm and difficult to see a thing on stage among the neverending tall metal heads, so don't expect any comments on the performances of Temple of Baal, Astaroth, Today is the Day, Ava Inferi nor Exhumed. But the shows on the main stage were great enough to keep my interest alive and not miss the 'smaller' concerts. For example the Americans from Soilent Green and their grindcore, doom/death/black mix of music, who even had a small Happy birthday moment for their guitarist whom we found out might have still been a tad hangover from the previous day's party. I am not familiar with their music at all, but I sensed a lot of aggression in it sustained all the time by heavy riffs and tight drumming.

The highlight of the day for me were the next Americans, this time coming from Florida and playing a very technical music which was an interesting blend of death metal with what seemed to be jazz or progressive elements. Like for example the groovy jazz drumming while the singer screams his lungs out and the guitar does riffs that would embarrass many of those fast skilled power metal guitarists out there. And what an energy did all of them have, especially when performing songs back from 90s which were known and cheered for by the crowd. None of the musicians stood still or on the same place for more than half a minute, taking their headbanging and instruments to all corners of the stage and involving every being in the audience. I loved the drum and bass solo that they had in the middle of the set and I also loved to watch the bass player whose fingers were moving at the speed of any serious guitar player. Did I mention how captivating it also was to watch the guitarist in action? All in all they were a really good treat for the night and the crowd loved them. This I can also judge by the reaction I saw afterwards at the signing session.

For this night we were announced that the Sons of Northern Darkness, aka Immortal would perform and exclusive and extra set for this festival. Although they seem to be like one of those unwanted progenies (who hardly does what everybody is compelled to) in the world of black metal, they are very loved by fans and by the time their concert started it was as packed as in a can of sardines in the main area from Rockefeller. People got warmed up by singing along with Seek and Destroy from Metallica, that was pouring from the speakers. If you haven't seen them before, the black and white evil face masks à la Kiss might make you think that a scary and serious act is going to happen on stage. Heh. After few minutes though, you might wonder if you're not at the zoo watching some long haired pandas jumping around and doing tricks. Both Abbath and Apollyon move (sometimes quite normal, other times with primate like jumps or fencing steps) continuously from one side of the stage to another, putting on every silly face they have in the inventory, occasionally doing some Gene Simmons impressions with their tongues. In all this chaotic movement accidents may happen and headbanging right behind your stage mate might cause some of your hair to get caught in the neck of his bass. They are really good entertainers in this serious world of dark metal and they love to make fun of the crowd in between songs - or at the end when Abbath held the microphone down his ass so we can probably hear noises that come from other orifices of his body. But despite that you can't deny their musicianship. It was a continuous feast for good guitar riffs - afterall, when you're a three pieces band you are bound to have such riffs - and the evil rhythms of their melodies caused a bunch of mosh pits in the crowd plus a lot of headbanging.

I guess Abbath's question can work for an ending for this day's review - 'Are you demonised yet?'. And don't forget to watch the playlist with new videos here
http://www.youtube.com/p/D90001F02B851E4F?

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2011-04-22 02:53 - Gothminister live@Inferno Metal Festival 2011


Gothminister live@Inferno Metal Festival 2011

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2011-04-22 02:53 - Akercocke live@Inferno Metal Festival 2011


Akercocke live@Inferno Metal Festival 2011

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2011-04-22 02:52 - Forbidden@Inferno Metal Festival 2011


Forbidden@Inferno Metal Festival 2011

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2011-04-22 02:52 - Day 1

The 3 days full of dark and extreme metal on the Rockefeller and John Dee stages in Oslo have kicked in on Thursday, April 21st and as the first performers we have the Norwegian trio from Diskord on the small stage of John Dee. If by the time I entered the venue I was still a bit sleepy, it all vanished away after the first few seconds of their death metal in which they blended a touch of slow doom or really fast riffs to make it an interesting listen. And to my surprise, the crowd was rather dense for the first band of the day and seemed to know the songs. A thing to appreciate with this band is the fact that the drummer seems to be the main singer and I always find it impressive if you can concentrate on synchronising your 4 limbs while having to sing along. I left to wander around the festival area for a while though, so I could have a look at the variety of merchandise and especially at some of the silver jewelry after it turned out that some acquaintances started their own business into this branch.

Soon it was time for the opener on the main Rockefeller stage - Akercocke, an English progressive blackened death metal band from London, England. I was told by a friend of mine that they rarely play live, so it was quite an occasion to see them at this festival. An occasion that made me really like this band. Again, very surprising to see so much crowd and so early in front of the stage, headbanging, screaming and singing along to the songs, but it wasn't in vain since they got rewarded by a very good performance with a lot of energy and good mood on stage. Unfortunately it all ended too soon. I would have given that band at least one more hour on stage. But since it's not up to me to decide, we move on to the next performers, the Norwegians from Gothminister and their industrial metal in the range of Rammstein sound at times. White face paint, plenty of eye makeup, crosses and weird looking dolls on stage, remote controlled small planes going above the crowd and with cross shaped remotes, lots of pyro effects including sparkles coming out the guitar necks... Yes, a lot of visual effects, interesting nevertheless, yet they made me lose any focus on music. Plus it got so warm inside that I went on the outside terrace for the second half of their performance.

A short trip to John Dee after the recommendation of another friend to see Harm, another young Norwegian trio, this time dwelling in the realms of thrash and with a 'Demonic Alliance' album out in April 2011 - after 5 years of silence since their first release. So I guess the new album was the main ingredient of the playlist as they played in the spirit of what seems to be the tagline on their facebook page 'THRASH TILL FUCKING DEATH!!'. But it was time to check the food offer on the outdoor terrace of the venue as the smell of grill was rather tempting when passing by. I forgot why I never made it there, but anyways, I made it to the next concert on the main stage, as I really wanted to see the reunited version of DHG (aka Dødheimsgard), a band with plenty of member changing history. Another visual performance involving a lot of body paint, this time more varied though - red, blue (Avatar?), but this time music also got my attention with its industrial like rhythms in it, yet more black and tight most of the time. It was really lovely to hear the nice keyboard melodies as accompaniment for the growls and fast drumming and all in all, considering that they haven't played much live lately, I applaud this performance.

Another Norwegian trio - for a while at least - came afterwards on the main stage. It was the black/thrash metal band Aura Noir, whose members also play or have played in famous metal projects: Aggressor (Carl-Michael Eide - Ved Buens Ende, Cadaver Inc., Dødheimsgard, Satyricon, Ulver, Infernö and Virus), Apollyon (Ole Jørgen Moe - Dødheimsgard, Lamented Souls, Gorgoroth, Cadaver Inc. and Immortal), Blasphemer (Rune Eriksen - Mayhem). Hence you could easily see their confidence of being on stage and performing for big crowds. With Apollyon's vocals I always kept thinking they would start playing Immortal songs any minute, but after few songs they switched the drummer and were joined on stage by Aggressor and things shifted a lot to a more thrash'n'roll style. All in all an old school sound and a lot of energy transmitted from the artists, even if Carl-Michael Eide had to sit on a chair due the accident he had back in 2005.

I took a short trip to John Dee, since I thought I had already seen Voivod last year, but now I am pretty sure I made a confusion between the Canadians and something else. The band on stage now had nothing to do with what I remembered, it was much more heavy and thrash metal with way more movement on the little stage and enthusiasm from the band. It was too crowded though so I had to get out after one song in order to breathe and later on to queue for a good photo spot for the last band of the day, Forbidden. I had previously seen them outside on the terrace during a photo session and they seemed like fun people. Which is exactly what they were on stage - a bunch of people really enjoying to play their old school classical thrash metal at a very high intensity. It was very disappointing to see that most of the crowd was gone though, yet the singer did his best to entertain and involve the remaining ones who gathered in front of the stage and cheered for them. Especially when they dedicated their song, RIP, to the guitarist of Jon Oliva's Pain, Matt LaPorte, who recently passed away. Showwise, nothing fancy visual effects from their side, except maybe some crazy hair-mills from the guitarist.

I tend to also take videos during the main performances and I will add them all to this playlist:
http://www.youtube.com/p/D90001F02B851E4F

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2011-04-21 01:44 - Okkultokrati live@Inferno 2011


Okkultokrati live@Inferno 2011

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2011-04-21 01:43 - Dornenreich live@Inferno 2011


Dornenreich live@Inferno 2011

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2011-04-21 01:43 - Day 0 - Club day

As every year, the Inferno metal festival that takes place during the Easter weekend in Oslo, Norway, is opened by a Club day on Wednesday. The club day means a multitude of bands who, for one reason or another, wouldn't be added to the main list of performers, but instead they are being split at 6-7 stages all over the city center to perform there. Initially I was considering John Dee to see Einherjer but after hearing from various people how crowded the place gets, I went to Victoria National Jazz Scene club. As you can probably tell by the name, it's not the regular metal club, hence it was rather funny to get in there and see the floor in front of the stage empty while every leather bearer around was laying on the soft couches and chairs far in the back. But eventually, when the dimmed lights announced the appearance of the first band on stage, people started appearing in front of the stage.

First to perform were the Austrians from Dornenreich, who for the first song only had an acoustic guitar and a violin on stage. Very beautiful music, but bringing up a lot of WTF question marks if you didn't know their music and you were convinced you're attending a rather extreme metal festival. But problem got solved with the second song when the drummer came on stage and the acoustic was replaced. Still not the usual number of instrument types for a metal act, yet they put together an incredibly pleasant ambiental music, sometimes led by fast guitar solos that would also backup the growlings and other times flowing into softer parts where the violin takes control and thrills your ears. But at any time the drums are quite powerful and fast, contributing quite a lot to the actual melody in their songs.

For the next band, Okkultokrati, I will allow myself to copy their own description from the facebook page: "Frosty and nihilistic punk metal, now sludgy, then with a galloping d-beat. Drums chop and cruise at times, riding like Hellhammer, somersaulting other times in Sabbath fashion. The sound churns and chugs and sways and sags and sprints and plods and gallops. It features enough detuned, crane-necked riffing and grated chord-work to satisfy all manner of heavy-music fans." Because this is pretty much what we heard and experienced on stage, and I need to stress out the insanity of the bass player who would spin around both himself and the bass, lift it, lower it to the floor, play it in impossible positions. All these while wearing a very blue tshirt. And the drummer, despite the fact that he only used 2 cymbals and 2 toms, made enough noise for 3 drumkits. They get a lot of pluses for the stage performance, but also some minuses for the vocalist whom I found rather dull compared to the other members.

As preparation for the next band, a bunch of people laid a lot of candles in front of the stage, lit them - to the excitement of us, photographers, who found the right scenery for artistic images - placed a skull or two on the monitors, some flags with the band's logos and a bunch of pedals on the floor. When the band came on stage, we realised - to the disappointment of the photographers - that there's no other lights than the lit candles. Oh, and a screen that was placed as backdrop and on which a demonic movie was being projected. The 6 Norwegians from Altaar filled the whole space on the stage and the projection was a bit wasted since you'd always have the images interrupted by their silhouettes. Musically though, I expected something very dark and continuous growling, especially after seeing that the singer comes on stage in a long black robe with a hood covering most of his head and a lot of paint on his face. But to my surprise what I heard on stage was more in the range of noise. A dark noise if you want, but a lot of pedal effects that made Andreas Tylden to spend half of the time on his knees. They reminded me of what I had heard from SunO))) or Isis. And man, was it loud. I'm not always thrilled by such a multitude of effects in music, but I admit that the song structure was rather incredible, almost always increasing the tempo and the intensity a bit, shaking you off the ground by the end of the song.

I'll stop here with the words for this day and hope the next 3 days of Inferno will bring more and more thrilling musicians and sounds on the stages.

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  Writer: Andrea Chirulescu
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