Metaltown 2013

As far as I am concerned these guys are pioneers and one of the best metal bands of all time.

Possibly one of the heaviest metal festivals Sweden has to offer had a stellar line up this year. With a stack of old school legends this was certainly going to be a blast from the past.

Thursday was a bit of a slow start with only two band of interest to me being Motorhead and Clutch as I had arrived too late to catch Norwegian rockers Turbonegro. Disappointingly Motorhead cancelled due to Lemmy suffering from some medical issues but the cranking groove machine Clutch certainly did not disappoint putting on a fantastic show. Mustasch really must be given a round of applause for stepping up to the mammoth task of jumping in for Motorhead, mind you they did get a hand from Mikkey Dee with their cover of Ace Of Spades. I caught some of Graveyard's set but, as usually I felt there was a real disconnect between the band and the audience. The music is great but, I feel that they really are just too introverted.

Friday picked up the pace and promised a explosive day. Starting things off were storming performances from The Devil Wears Prada and Soilwork. Now for me, one of the metal greats Carcass was absolutely the high light of this festival. As far as I am concerned these guys are pioneers and one of the best metal bands of all time. Their "Heartwork" album is undeniably a pivotal point in metal history. Although they put on a flawless performance the younger crowd did not seem to get it. They were blissfully unaware of the who what or why of this great band. Danko Jones as usual cracked out the guns to put on a good performance although I must say he seemed a little more cynical in his approach to the crowd than previous shows I've seen of his recently. Katatonia brought back fond feelings and the always well received Sabaton got the crowd worked up for the the spectacle that is Slipknot. If you've never seen Slipknot live I think it's fare to say that they are special. Kind of a horror show circus of sorts with maniac drummers on revolving platforms all lit up with flaming pyrotechnics. As was to be excepted their show was all you would expect, flames and twisted dominance. For those who still had the beans for it, one of my personal favorites Kvelertak topped off the night with a cracking combination of rock, punk and black metal.

Saturday for most started with a hangover and for those who managed to drag themselves out of bed were treated to a staple of the Swedish festival circuit Entombed. After many years these guys are still steaming along and putting on great shows. Although the festival metallers were still gradually entering the grounds, The Resistance got on with the business of putting on a lively show and those that dragged them selves from bed were rewarded with their smack in the face style of hardcore. The Sword were better than I expected but, I felt it took them too long to really get their groove on. Again, another of the old school and hugely influential, Napalm Death ripped Metaltown a new one. Impressive after so many years of being so intense and for those listening Mark Greenway delivered short and sharp messages to wake up and grab life by the balls. Next up I settled back with a beer to catch the always wonderful and uplifting The Devin Townsend Project. Hardcore Superstar kept things rolling until the must see atmospheric masters Cult of Luna put on a flawless show. Always a pleasure to see these guys perform. Danzig, what can I say. The attitude and aggression was delivered as expected and we even got a bunch of Misfits songs and were treated to having them played with Doyle beating it out on the guitar. The headliners for the night were veterans of the music scene Korn. Although Korn put on a pro show, I can't help but feel that they've lots a bit of their edge.

So with three days of METAL!! all I can really say is that Metaltown really was a success. The crowd was well behaved and bands put on the METAL!! The sun was shining for the most part, the beer and pizza was plentiful. What more could you want from a festival!

Written by William Riever, 2013-07-07