A Spañard Goes to Hellfest 2k15: Vol. I

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Greetings, toileteers. I last spake to thee before the real start of my adventures. Now, the sun rises over Northeastern France, brining with it the dawn of a three day marathon of metal, dust and general European-ness.

DAY 1

Around 9:30 AM we wake up to find the tent unbearably hot to be in any longer, so we eat a quick breakfast and get all our stuff together before heading out for the day. Bölzer don’t start until 12-ish, so I’ll have ample time to grab an official festival shirt and then walk around for a bit, right? WRONG. Between the lines at the main gate and at the merch booth I barely made it out in time, but the shirt I snagged sold out later that day so I think it was worth it. My brother decided not to wait around and took some pictures instead.

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Morning’s first impressions:

12:30 PM – Despise You are really good but their chick vocalist is one of the most annoying things I’ve ever heard. Their whole wigger aesthetic doesn’t really fit the music, I am confused [Editor’s Note: You are now on my shit list until the end of time]. Bölzer sounded massive for being just two dudes, good stuff indeed.

15:45 PM – The clouds are gone and the sun is out full blast. Truckfighters were super solid, as were Sylosis despite having pretty bad sound, Defeater were interesting and Armored Saint were good. John Bush‘s still got it. Leng T’che were pretty fun, what with the engaging breakdowns and all.

Looking at the schedule for the remainder of the day, it started to become clearer and clearer that my neck was going to be in bad shape on Saturday morning. Sometimes it seems like all the bands you really like pile up into one day, and this was pretty much the case this year. Not that the remaining two days were lacking, but the combination of being better rested and seeing a handful of my favorite bands ever in the span of a few hours made for the strongest day of the weekend. This is something that you don’t really notice until you’ve lived it, but fatigue plays a really important part in the festival experience, and getting plenty of rest (even if it’s just sitting down on the ground somewhere) is essential to be able to make it through the day in one piece. Anyway…

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19:15 PM – Oathbreaker absolutely killing it, their vocalist is really mesmerizing. Vallenfyre, Melechesh and Dying Fetus, and High on Fire were all a blast. Matt Pike still hasn’t found his shirt.

I feel like I need to elaborate here because WOW. Vallenfyre sounded remarkably close to how they do on record, and it was crushing. The Altar (Death/Grind stage) had really good sound this year and I’m really glad it did, other times it’s been a jumbled bunch of bass. Melechesh, on the other hand, didn’t sound as good, but were really entertaining.

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My third time seeing Dying Fetus = the third time my neck is hopelessly obliterated, surprisingly not beyond repair… yet. They usually play the same “classic” songs for festival sets, but I love them so much I can’t get enough of them. We showed up to Oathbreaker expecting to see Trap Them but apparently there was a last minute change and I think it was for the better, it was an extremely intense set and probably my favorite of the entire weekend. If you haven’t checked them out yet, do it now.

22:45 PM – Watching 5FDP RIP $H*T UP from afar and trying to forget about the fact that I am dead. Chilling out having dinner while watching Lamb of God bring the mosh was a good idea, but after seeing Bloodbath and Mastodon back to back we need a bit more rest.

Despite what anyone might tell you (ahem, Dubya), Bloodbath with Nick Holmes are really entertaining. Sure, he’s not the best “harsh” vocalist around (or the most active onstage), but that doesn’t really matter when you’re headbanging and screaming AND SO YOU DIE at the top of your lungs. Seeing Mastodon live was on my bucket list, so I forgive them for not playing anything from Remission of Crack the Skye. Their set was (forseeably) Once More ‘Round the Sun-centric, with two songs each from The Hunter, Blood Mountain and Leviathan. For some reason they played a smaller tent instead of one of the main stages, so anticipating an ungodly amount of people we saved ourselves a decent spot mid-front about an hour before they started. I don’t know if it was a good idea or not because I couldn’t see the SUCKAS outside from my FAIRLY DECENT SPOT.

2:15 AM – OOOOOOOOWWWWW, my everything. Meshuggah were appropriately groovy and Jørgen Munkeby thanked the way too sparse Shining crowd for being there instead of at Slipknot. The Norwegians cemented my neck breakage for good, and then we got to check out a bit of Slipknot’s set for a good old nostalgia trip. “Who wants to go back to 1999?”, Corey Taylor pondered. “Whoever makes J’NCOS!!!”, I shouted back. I don’t think he heard me.

Meshuggah sounded massive, but at a really reasonable overall level. Apparently they insist on letting their own guy run their sound and keep the volume where it should be, one more reason to love the Swedes. In all seriousness though, Shining got robbed. They were closing the Black/Folk stage on Friday night and they got less of a crowd than Melechesh. Not that it phased me personally: I saw a great performance and got to hear some of my favorite songs as well as a couple new ones (yes, they were the right amount of saxxxy). Jørgen said that the new Shining album will be out October 2nd on Spinefarm Records, you heard it here first!!

Aaaand that pretty much was day one in a nutshell. Thanks for reading!! Part deux coming soon.

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  • The W.

    I’M NOT THE ONLY ONE WHO THOUGHT THAT BLOODBATH SET WAS AWFUL!

    • The W.

      To clarify my point, Nick Holmes was dreadful. The rest of the band was okay.

      • Void Dweller

        I never really could get on board with that band. My favorite release is still their first EP.

        • The W.

          I like some of their stuff (namely the first few releases), but they aren’t a band I find myself coming back to often.

          • Lisbeth (Tyree) Salander

            Nightmares Made Flesh is still my go too.

          • The W.

            Eaten is a great song. That’s how they closed the set.

          • Lisbeth (Tyree) Salander

            I can’t remember if they closed with that or not. I think they did an encore or some shit. I think I left to go catch Napalm actually.

          • The W.

            A wise choice. ND put on one of the most fun shows I’ve been to.

          • Lisbeth (Tyree) Salander

          • The W.

            I don’t crowdsurf/stage dive often, but if the crowd is right for it, it can be a lot of fun.

          • Lisbeth (Tyree) Salander

            I don’t either, but they played Suffer the Children dude. I chugged my beer and got on stage.

          • Pagliacci is Kvlt

            I’d break my rule for a Toileteer and catch them, but for everyone else it’s still:

            http://stream1.gifsoup.com/view5/2869941/5-d-s-of-dodgeball-o.gif

          • This is me in that case:

    • Lisbeth (Tyree) Salander

      I was hammered when I saw them. I thought they were pretty good, it is a bit hazy though.

      • The W.

        Randall, Leif, Masterlord, and I were all streaming the set and making fun of Holmes.

        • Lisbeth (Tyree) Salander

          He was really weird during the MDF set. Band completely ripped though.

          • The W.

            Aye, the music was on point.

    • Paddlin’ Rites ov Beargod

      Nick is the boring frontman.

  • Lisbeth (Tyree) Salander
    • Dagon

      Every live clip I’ve seen from them is killer, even when the sound is shit.

      • Lisbeth (Tyree) Salander

        Just watching him play guitar is mind blowing. Really unique.

        • Dagon

          It’s entrancing. The riffs and the way he handles the 10-string like it’s nothing.

    • Disgustache

      That chest piece is in-fucking-sane.

  • Dagon
    • The W.

      The popcorn ones are terrible.

      • *All of them
        FTFY

      • Dagon

        they sound disgusting.

      • CyberneticOrganism

        Those are the best, and the toasted marshmallows

        • The W.

          YOU DON’T HAVE TASTE BUDS, ROBIT!

          • CyberneticOrganism

            I have detailed files!

      • W,

        I bought the new Claret Ash LP. It rips, hard.

        GL

        • The W.

          Ayyyy!

          • This is by far the best release of the year thus far!

            GL

          • new 5FDP isn’t out yet?

          • AUGUST 28TH BRO

          • Lisbeth (Tyree) Salander

            Let me just mark my calendar with my own fecal matter.

          • MoshOff

            I KNEW SOMETHING IMPORTANT WAS COMING UP

          • I swear I read “Claret Ash” as “Clarinet Ash” just about every time.

            GL

          • Lacertilian

            They should have called themselves Fraxinus raywoodii to avoid such confusion

      • more beer

        The first bands have been announced for Denver Black Sky.

    • ME GORAK™

      GORAK WANT GO AT LEAST 1 EUROPEAN FESTIVAL!!!!!!!!!

      • Dagon

        GORAK AND DAGON GO TO HELLFEST 2k16

        GORAK DAGON SMASH

        • ME GORAK™

          WACKEN & BLOODSTOCK STILL COMING UP!!!!!

    • This is me:

      I mean, I’m happy for Moshito, but still jelly:

      http://i.dsplk.com/tb/happy-jelly.jpg

      • Dagon

        You are a pretty little jelly

    • Day one alone sounds better than any fest in the US this year. I too am jelly.

      • KJM

        The UK and Europe get stuff like this and I get JuggaloFest Jr and watered down New England Metal fest.

        • I went to Hellfest here in the US three times. They were more of a hardcore fest than metal but the first year was one of my favorite shows of all time.

      • MoshOff

        In all fairness, I would kill to go to Maryland Deathfest at least once, that lineup SLAYS every single year.

        • go next year! a bunch of us are trying to do it.

          • MoshOff

            I would, but oceans.

          • 7.8, too much water

          • KJM

            If at least 4 bands I like play on the same day, I’ll consider it.

          • Scrimm

            My chances are so fucked.

          • DARN IT!!

          • Scrimm

            Crushed dude, truly, but there was some money that was supposed to be coming in that isn’t now and my rent just went way up. Gonna try but I don’t see how I could save that much now. Maybe I’ll try for LVDF instead.

        • I wish I could’ve went this past year. I’m not impressed with next year’s line up so far. It’s lacking in the grind category.

  • You are LITERALLY the worst.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MaRHrXWanUw

  • Pagliacci is Kvlt

    Hrrooom…

    • SEND THIS TO THE TOP!!!!!!

      +1 !!!!!!

      GL

  • The W.

    I still think it’s pretty amazing that Meshuggah’s light guy runs their light show manually during their sets.

    • Lisbeth (Tyree) Salander

      I heard it was Haake’s brother.

      • The W.

        I forgot that little tidbit. I will self-flagellate at lunch.

    • Guacamole Jim

      You mean Haake’s brother?? Because that family apparently only produces top-tier rhythmists.

    • CyberneticOrganism

      The sixth Meshuggan

  • Throbbing Fart Thong Of Doom

    Sounds like a solid lineup (outside of course Five Finger Dick Pump and Slipknot)!

  • Le Tapir The Based

    New Shining album?
    RFI

  • Lisbeth (Tyree) Salander

    Wormlust just posted this:

    “So obviously the album album is now one year behind schedule,this is due to time not obeying and multiple ego-deaths. Which means that ultimately it is a more of a record than it would have been last year. Good news for those that can step outside themselves into this fall?”

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UoijVbnJESg

  • MoshOff

    @joethrashnkill:disqus I wasn’t the only one confused by Despise You, a bunch of people kept cracking up right along with me every time the chick opened her mouth. Do not get.

    • MoshOff

      WHO MOVED THE CANARY ISLANDS????!?????

      • CANARY ISLANDS ARE NOW A PART OF MARACAIBO. BEHOLD THE VENEZUELAN SUFFERING!

  • Disgustache

    Will Matt Pike ever find his shirt? We hope not, because he makes music that sounds exactly like he looks. Keep it coming!

    http://photos.tinnitus-photography.com/img/s3/v41/p917917985-3.jpg

    • Nineinchneurosis

      Dude did he lose his Lemmy stache?

    • Lacertilian

      Never cover the @mattpikessweatyleftnipple:disqus.
      Never.

  • OldMetalHead

    Again, really entertaining read. I seriously fucked up by missing all of the fests while living in Europe for a year.