Previously posted on Metal Shock Finland:
After another 5am(ish) bedtime it was a bit of a scramble to be up and ready for the first of the Sunday interviews, and oh dear, how on earth did it get to be SUNDAY so quickly! Between a rather late breakfast and interviews we missed both GAMMA BOMB & WHITECHAPEL; but we did manage to catch some of the SACRED MOTHER TONGUE set. Formed in 2008 this is not a band I can say I was familiar with prior to Bloodstock but with Darrin on vocals, Lee on drums and ’king of the shredders’ Andy on guitar; along with newly established bass player Craig Daws this UK metal band do seem to be thrashing out some great music – shame then that the Sunday crowd is still a tad sparse and lethargic…myself included!
Shamefully also due to other commitments I also missed the much-anticipated FOZZY set. With iconic wrestler/crazy man Chris Jericho as front man I am assured that these guys soon breathed some life into the lethargic crowd, and that hangovers and sunburn were soon forgotten! With yet more scantily clad ladies, this time breathing fire, and a guest appearance by the one and only Phil Campbell of Motorhead fame, FOZZY were soon a firm favourite on that sultry Sunday afternoon – ‘God Pounds His Nails’ and ‘She’s My Addiction’ soon had the now wide-awake crowd singing along, and they especially appreciated the fact that FOZZY front man Chris made the effort to go down to the barrier to say “hi”.
Next up was AMORPHIS and this was another ‘must not miss’ band for myself and Ali. Formed in 1990, Finnish metallers AMORPHIS now have the charismatic front man Tomi Joutsen (having replaced long-time vocalist Tomi Koivusaari in 2004) With his awesome dreadlocks and strange claw-like microphone he growls his way through the setlist, starting with ‘Shades of Grey’, in spectacular fashion – and the crowds, already awake and more alert after the FOZZY set are loving this unique set of progressive metal!
I did get to hear, but alas not see both EXODUS & DEVILDRIVER due to a slight emergency when my James Hetfield L’arpie was suddenly discovered to be missing in action. I finally tracked him down to a ‘cigarette/smokers supplies’ shop in the metal market, where he had pride of place on the counter awaiting my return – looking, if I may say so, rather ‘mellow’ indeed, maybe best not to dwell too much on what he had been up to in my absence!!
Panic over and it was time to return to the R.J.D stage for the penultimate band of B.O.A. 2013, the mighty ANTHRAX! I last saw these monsters of thrash at Hammerfest 4 in North Wales last year and yet again, for a traditional thrash fan like myself they totally delivered the goods. If a band can do ‘exactly what it says on the tin’ then this is what these veteran metallers did; Joey, Frank, Charlie, Rob and Scott always seem to be consummate professionals, as indeed they should after all these years! Let’s face it, these guys are not members of the ‘BIG 4’ just to make the numbers up! Endearing themselves even further to the fervid crowd by dropping down photo-banners of both Ronnie James Dio and Dimebag Darrell their 1 hour support slot was by far one of the best I had seen this past weekend. Highlights for me were; number one, probably Joey’s donning of an Indian Chief’s headdress and a screech of “can we do a war dance” for ‘Cry for The Indians’; pity it kept falling off and eventually ended up in his hand being manically waved around like he had just taken his first scalp! Highlight number two had to be the appearance onstage of none other than the V.I.P area’s Judge Dredd during ‘I Am The Law’! ANTHRAX closed the set with ‘Antisocial’ to a sea of horns held high…
AND FINALLY it is time for the much-anticipated headliners of 2013, the mighty SLAYER, and the already huge crowd at the R.J.D stage swells to epic proportions, the atmosphere is palpable with excitement and anticipation…..For me personally, Metallica are ‘THE GODS’ of thrash, but American thrash metallers SLAYER do indeed come a close second! Here is yet another epic thrash metal band formed in the 80’s when thrash was at it’s heyday; SLAYER who hail from California, U.S.A are indeed up there with the GREATS….however I have to mention that Tom Araya did seem to take a while to get into his stride – not that surprising really I suppose given the awful death of fellow-founder Jeff Hannerman on May 2nd this year from liver failure – ‘World Painted Blood’ is the set opener, but in reality these giants of metal do not really reach their stride until around their 3rd number, ‘War Ensemble’ (it was nice too to see Gary Holt onstage as I had missed him earlier when EXODUS played) . Kerry King did just what he does best during the set and shreds for all he is worth, while Paul Bostaph does his utmost to fill previous drummer Dave Lombardo’s very large shoes….SLAYER did get the biggest crowd I had seen all weekend despite the awful clash of DYING FETUS on the Sophie stage; which did indeed leave the lovers of more ‘brutal metal’ with a bit of a dilemma on their hands!
I found it slightly odd that, except for a large banner bearing his name, Jeff Hannerman hardly got a mention – maybe it is simply too soon and the pain is just too still way too raw, it is after all only just over three months ago it happened! Alas due to a tip off that if we did not leave before the set was over that we could be stuck in traffic for several hours, we had to abandon the last bit of SLAYER and made tracks
for home, I am assured however that I missed what I thought I would miss, which was ‘Raining Blood’, with an encore consisting of ‘South of Heaven’ & ‘Angel of Death’. As we walked away, for the final time this year, from the Ronnie James Dio stage I could still hear fans muttering “It’s fucking SLAYER man!!”
And that, my fellow metalheads is that for 2013, for the faithful thousands that pilgrimage there every year, BLOODSTOCK OPEN AIR quite simply is ‘Metal Mecca’ ! See you all next year \m/
(Personal Highlights (Bands): Hell, Sabaton, Accept & Anthrax
Personal Highlights (Wkend): Awesome friends both old and new, watching wheelchair crowd surfing, Alien/Predator & Judge Dredd, Gazebo barbecue and last but not least ‘PATRICK’, the now world-famous Showsec V.I.P area security guard J
Lowlights: Hardly any but PLEASE guys don’t throw glass bottles, you could find yourself on a manslaughter charge, apart from that, there was just one nasty incident in camp, expertly and effortlessly sorted by the awesome ‘Showsec Security’…….)
Metal Shock Finland/Bloodstock Radio Interviews:
As part of the team representing Metal Shock Finland I was primarily there to look, listen and take everything in; my work as a Reviewer doesn’t start in earnest until post-festival….however, I was also there to assist Ali Blackdiamond with her numerous interviews, mainly in the form of filming and photography. Here is the list of who we managed to fit in; including stage and show times. To hear the interviews/see the photographs please log on to …
- Xentrix Sophie Lancaster Stage 6.30 – 7.30pm
- Absolva Sophie Lancaster Stage 11.50am – 12.20pm
- Incassum Jagermeister Stage 6.50 – 7.20pm
- Karybdis New Blood Stage 4.30 – 5.00pm
- Accept Ronnie James Dio Stage 7.30 – 8.30pm
- Firewind Ronnie James Dio Stage 15.20 – 16.05pm
- Cypher 16 Sophie Lancaster Stage 16.20 – 17.00pm
- Elithia New Blood Stage 11.15 – 11.45am
- Internal New Blood Stage 15.45 – 16.15pm Conflict
- Primitai Not playing PR Only
- Betraeus Sophie Lancaster Stage 13.30 -14.10pm
- Hell Ronnie James Dio Stage 13.40 – 14.25pm
- Sabaton Ronnie James Dio Stage 17.20 – 18.20pm
- Power Quest Sophie Lancaster Stage 17.55 – 19.10pm (last ever show)
- Betraeus Jagermeister Stage 17.20 – 17.50pm
- Amorphis Ronnie James Dio Stage 15.15 – 16.00pm
- One for Sorrow New Blood Stage 18.00 – 18.30pm
- States Of Panic Sophie Lancaster Stage 11.50am – 12.20pm
- Mia Klose Jagermeister Stage 14.50 – 15.20pm
Review by Diane Parkes