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Vagos Open Air 2011 | FESTIVALPHOTO

Vagos Open Air 2011


As you may know from the previous editions, the fest takes place in a soccer field and this third edition was no different, the organization brought some improvements such as a new roof above the seats in the right side of the field. since that in the previous editions dust was a real problem, they decided to put a huge rug on the pit ground preventing the clouds of dust and because of the all known rule of the “tall guy who stands always in front of you during a concert even if the place is empty” this year they had two big screens near the stage which eased the view of the bands that were playing.

This year there was an autograph tent with a photography exhibition of the previous Vagos Open Air Editions with four main photographers: Vânia Santos, Gonçalo Delgado, Antonio Pedro Nascimento and of course our crew member André Henriques. Unfortunately the exhibitions were only open to the public when the autograph sessions were taking place which limited the number of people who were allowed to be inside and it was always unconfortable and distracting with the band members inside.

Comparing the amount of people who attended this festival with last year’s I dare say that the presence of metalheads doubled, especially on the first day.

But unfortunately not everything went well; there were some negative points such as the excessive security searching at the entrance of the fest which increased the queues to get in and the rudeness of the security staff who were a bit too hardcore with all the people.
The night before the festival there was a power generator failure which ended in a small burst that required some extinguisher skills.

Day 01

Essence: Good thrashers, they played an amazing Slayer cover “Raining Blood”.
Anathema: If the Cavanagh brothers knew of the things they were about to deal, the show probably wouldn’t even started. Everything was going well until the second song “Summernight Horizon”; the electrical current on the stage went off at least four times, two times during the same song “Empty”, this was very demeaning for the band. During one of the electricity failures Danny said: "We must be too f***ing loud".
During “Dreamlight”, even with all the confusion, Douglas Lee's voice managed to exceeded expectations. In general they played many songs from the last album; some may have said that they should’ve played more songs of the old albums, more in tune with the spirit of the fest. The show went on anyway; they took the opportunity to introduce their new keyboardist, the Portuguese Daniel Cardoso. Suprisingly Vincent was speaking in Portuguese with the public (I bet Daniel Cardoso taught him a couple of phrases!)
The concert endend sooner than expected but despite all the setbacks Anathema managed to overcome all the difficulties, thanking the audience who supported them throughout the whole show.

After a long, long wait due to previous technical problems with the power generator (which had to be replaced for a spare one) Tiamat entered on stage with a solid and balanced repertoire among all their albuns (they have a few). After apologising for the delay they dedicated “Vote for Love” to Opeth and Anathema. I think their sound was great, and I was delighted with the solos of their guitarrist Roger Orjesson. The audience was thrilled with the old-school classics such as “Sleeping Beauty”and “Gaia”.

- Fireflower
- Children of the Underworld
- Cain
- Whatever that Hurts
- Divided
- Vote for Love
- Brighter than the Sun
- Phantasma de Luxe
- Cold Seed
- Wings of Heaven
- The Sleeping Beauty
- Gaia

After another delay due to the soundcheck where I think they checked everything but the microphone, the bad sound of the voices ruined the beginning of “The Grand Conjuration” luckily this lasted just a couple of minutes; some people noticed a decrease in the quality of Åkerfeldt growls, Unexpectedly they played one track of the Still Life album “Face of Melinda”; no doubt it was a great moment to remember.
Mikael was as funny as always, making short stand-ups through the whole show; the motive of his jokes, among others, was David Vincent, saying that when he was a teenager he took a picture with David since Morbid Angel was one of his favorite bands so that’s why he “ripped them off a couple of times”, he said that the song “Master’s Apprentices” was inspired by them. But the jokes didn’t end so soon: “What do you guys think David’s doing right now?” “I guess he’s probably taking a sh**” He also share some “private” moments of his stay in Vagos saying that he went to the beach with his daughter (she was sitting on the stage in a little white dress with a teddy bear) and some of the band members didn’t want to go in the water because it was “too f*****g cold”.
Generally, Opeth continue to invest in their very latest tracks and kind of “leaving behind”, the most mesmerizing scenes of their first albums.

- The Grand Conjuration
- Face of Melinda
- The Lotus Eater
- In My Time of Need
- The Drapery Falls
- Hex Omega
- Deliverance

Day 02

Malevolence: After many years inactive, the Portuguese death thrashers brought some old songs such as “A Shinning Onslaught of Tyranny” and “Hunters of the Red Moon” from the Martyrialized album along with new ones, especially “Equilibrium in Extremis” from the “Celebration of Dysfunctional Becoming” EP. It was interesting to see Aires Pereira (Moonspell bassist) go back to his roots (since he used to play with the band from their second album).

Ihsahn: Everyone was curious and excited to see the former member and front-man of the mythical Emperor on stage; in the beginning you could see the differences of his new project, more progressive than his previous band but the similarities between late Emperor remained in songs like “Invocation” for example.With three eight string guitars their sound couldn’t be more vast and diverse. They played two covers of Emperor: “Tongue of Fire” and “Thus Spake the Nightspirit”, ending the show with “On the Shores”.

Devin Townsend: “The best soundcheck ever” as I heard someone said, usually if not always, soundchecks are the most boring parts of a concert/festival, not this time: Devin turned this boring wait into an hilarious moment where everyone was waiting to see what else was going to appear, provided with funny projections and photomontages of him while some eurodance songs such as “Barbie Girl” from Aqua or “We like to Party” of Vengaboys played in the background.
He started with some funny remarks: «I’m gonna ask you a series of rethorical questions “Do you guys wanna hear another one?” “How are you guys doing?” “Whats the square of a hypotenuse?”» everybody laughed.
In the middle of the show Devin called Ihsahn on stage to sing in “Juular”.
The light schemes and video throughout the songs were spectacular; the Devin Townsend show was full of criativity and humor: Ziltoid the Omninescent was the king of the night. “You wanna know what you f***ing deserve? Ziltoid!”
Towards the end they played a song about how Ziltoid misses his wife and son (Color your World) to which at certain point Devin Townsend ask people to turn on the lighters.

- Addicted
- Supercrush!
- Kingdom
- Deadhead
- Truth/OM
- By your command
- Pixillate
- Bad Devil
- Juular
- Stand
- Color your World
- The Greys
- Deep Peace

Morbid Angel: They knew what the public wanted and they delivered it, it was non-stop classic after classic: full of intensity in total Armageddon, Trey’s ultra-technical riffs and incredibly virtuous solos, David Vincent was truly inspired, the nightsky was clear and full of stars and the view from the stage was amazing as Vincent said.
The controversial themes of the new album didn’t affect or compromise the rest of the show, instead i found them well set. They played for more than an hour (17 songs!) so there was no encore. In the end I gained a great pain in the neck, but hell! It was worth every part of it.

- Immortal Rites
- Fall from Grace
- Rapture
- Pain Divine
- Maze of Torment
- Sworn to the Black
- Existo Vulgore
- Nevermore
- I Am Morbid
- Angel of Disease
- Lord of all Fevers and Plague
- Chapel of Ghouls
- Dawn of the Angry
- Where the Slime Live
- Bil Ur-Sag
- God of Emptiness
- World of Shit (The Promised Land)

Writer: Claudia Bernal
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