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Witchfest 2017 – SA se metal scene word gesond gehou met ‘n Devildriver inspuiting

In Rolbees Reviews deur RolbeesRek jou bek

Ek was nou al by ‘n hele paar Witchdoctor Production shows maar hierdie was die eerste Witchfest wat ek bygewoon het. Ek het nog nie eens Big H se fotos gecheck nie maar ons het albei geweet na Vrydag dat dit weer tyd is om bietjie kragte saam te snoer en die metal fans wat dit nie kon maak nie so bietjie te treat. So metal show inspire al die regte donker kreatiewe dele in jou brein. Big H se fotos lyk anyway altyd soos Pulitzer Prize materiaal. Maar ek is nogal bekommerd oor die metal scene in SA partykeer. Mens sien nie so gereeld as wat mens sou wou international metal bands op African soil nie en as ek so na die toestand van music festivals in general kyk (wat een vir een begin afkak of downscale) wonder ek hoekom ‘n meer niche scene soos hierdie nie al lankal ‘n total casualty geword het nie. Ek vermoed dit het iets te doen met metalheads se undying loyalty en passie – en hulle is fokol fussy wat fancy venues aanbetref nie.

Ek gaan nie baie na die underground local metal gigs toe nie so my vinger is nie heeltyd op die pols van die ondier se klanke nie. Ek sal vir seker meer probeer gaan, so tussen al die ander genres wat ek ook love. Ons almal weet ook die swak ekonomie en die volatile Rand fok ons six love op. So mens kan ook nie by alles uitkom nie. Die effek van SA se credit rating downgrades gaan nog in die toekoms gevoel word. So om ‘n nog meer diverse international bill te verwag of te demand by Witchfest 2017 is op hierdie stadium van die geveg onrealisties en onregverdig. Jy kan die metal event organisers op jou een hand tel en die fans (in Gauteng at least) kan about net-net by ‘n packed Bassline inpas.

But one must give credit where it is due. Die organisers van Witchfest 2017 het hulle uitstekend van hulle taak gekwyt ten spyte van al die challenges in Zuptaland. Al die bands op die bill wat ek gesien het was van hoë gehalte en die sound was weer Tinitus-hard-in-die-ore en antidoofstom duidelik. Not so much die volgende dag. Tsweeeeeeeee! Jirre my arme ore! Decibel overdose ten spyte van die ouballie oorpluisies wat ek gedra het.

Ek het eers vieruur daar opgepitch want daar is geen manier dat ek vir twaalf ure straight sou kon regopsit in die rystoel en headbang nie. Maar ek het net ingerol en die bras van Boargazm het my alreeds laat tuisvoel. Pretoria VarkingZefMetal! Die Ruimtevarkies het ‘n slightly beter set gejol as toe hulle vir Fear Factory geopen het en ja hulle jokes is nog steeds so Wolmer soos altyd. Ha! Ek hoor hulle is besig met daai nuwe album van hulle. Kan nie wag nie! Maar net toe ek een word met die alien varkgevrete se snorkkrete (en dinge begin varksig raak) was die set verby. Van harde varktril na slap spekriempie in net onder ‘n minuut na die 45 minute timeslot verby is! Ek dink dit was about die enigste downside van die aand. Die vroeëre bands se kort sets. But then again, vir mense wat nie al die bands so goed ken nie, gee dit lekker wye exposure tot ‘n variety metal bands in een dag en as jy dink die donker metal met growling vocals is alles net een genre dan moet jy nou mooi oplet in die klas. Ja, inderdaad Strepsil metal (ek besit die kopiereg op daai uitdrukking) het mos verskeie vertakkinge. Sacrifist, daar uit die donker dieptes van Sodomhannesburg, byvoorbeeld, is melodic death metal met ‘n vocal emphasis op growling. Wat die guitaring aanbetref kan jy dit maklik misgis met van die old school bands soos Judas Priest of Metallica. Wrust is ‘n all black metal band. Nee ek bedoel nie genre nie. Dis swart bras van Botswana af. En dit was nie die enigste band met net net swart lede nie. Vroeër die dag het Demogoroth Satanum ook gespeel. Hulle is daar van Soweto af. I shit you not! Ek het hulle al live gesien voorheen en hulle is nog bietjie onervare maar die laaities is op die regte hoofweg hel toe. Hulle verf hulle gesigte so wit en byt bloedkapsules en allerhande onheilige dinge. #vampireface. Jirre, ek sal graag hulle ouers wil interview. Hulle kort ‘n medalje vir hulle parenting. Hulle Oumas dink seker die kinders is getoor deur ‘n sangoma. Of benodig decolonisation.

Anyways, Wrust val baie in dieselfde genre as Sacrifist en hulle is ook al jare in die scene. Dedicated metalheads van Gaborone. Ja, daar gaan daai stereotipe dat net wit Arieërs hierdie tipe musiek kan maak. No forced transformation here. Just metalheads loving metal. Wat van ‘n bietjie female growl vocals? I give you Theatre Runs Red! Lekker Durbs! Segen Vader Skottelgoedkas maak de duiwel aan zijn agterpoot vas. Jy weet daai bose orgies wat Rodney Seale jou van vertel het op skool? Dis hoe hierdie band klink. Blackened black metal. Goeie fok,hierdie metal is so boos hulle moes dit twee keer swart verf! Net om ekstra seker te maak dit trek die ondier se aandag. Maar hulle verf hulle gesigte ook soos King Diamond s’n. Baie goth nogal. Net met vuiste in die lig op die maat van tribal occultic chants. Dis amazing hoe die band die crowd kan intrek en die moshpit verander in ‘n kolkende ritueel. Gekontroleerde semi-chaos. Nie my koppie bokbloed nie maar dis iets om te beleef.

Dis grense tussen international en local bands was moeilik te bespeur Vrydag. One for Sorrow het mooi in my smaak geval, so mix tussen Godsmack en Pantera. Post-grunge groove metal met ‘n bietjie rap-growl vocals. En hulle is glad nie bang om polities te raak nie. Ek het geskiem hulle kom van SA af maar actually is hulle van die fokken UK af. London, yeah? Underfoot was netjies opgedra aan ons geliefkoosde President. Zombies ate my Girlfriend van Slaapstad, nog ‘n melodic death metal band, was nog minder bang om polities te raak. Hulle het bietjie punk in hulle musiek as jy fyn luister. Die lead singer dra so The Trooper outfit en die een guitarist lyk soos die lead singer van daai Griekse black metal band wie se naam ons nie mag uiter nie – of dalk lyk hy soos Liewe Jesus. Liewe Jesus mag maar kitaar slaan. Befokte band hierdie. Anarchy in the RSA! Hulle het ‘n cover van Sex Pistols se classic song gedoen maar obviously net getweak vir local doeleindes. Die moshpit is seker by verre die gesondste manier om te protest teen Zuma. Moshers raak van al hulle stress ontslae en kry broodnodige oefening. Bygesê teen daai tyd was die moshpit al erg gavaarlêk en tjatjarag. Bloody agênts.

Mantar van Hamburg het die hele kruiwa vol kopbene weer kom omgooi. Dis net twee bras en hulle het die drumset en die mic dwars teenoor mekaar op die verhoog opgestel. Dit het ‘n baie internalised atmosfeer geskep en die crowd was bietjie mindfucked. Sludge metal? Glo my, dis ‘n moerse interesting band al het hulle die moshers se spoed gebreek vir ‘n rukkie. Dis actually ‘n band wat jy stilstaande met aandag moet inneem. Die lead singer/guitarist is so lang maer fokken Duitser wat wydsbeen staan en oorleun as hy growl na die mic toe. Soos ‘n goblin wat reg staan om aan te val. Hy kan ‘n kitaar laat bloei, hou nogal baie van die word ‘masepoes’ en ruk met tye erg Cobain/Hendrix met sy feedback. Dis essentially doom metal, old school riffs gemeng met hardcore punk en slight progressive rock elements ook by. Die drummer is ook fikser as jou average percussionist. Nog nooit so iets gesien in my dag ter lewe nie. Hulle set het aan die einde bietjie lank geraak maar dit was nog ‘n bucket list experience vir my.

En dan die headliners! Devildriver! Van Californaaaaiyeaaah! Hulle is meer groove metal as black metal vir my. Probably die band wat die crowd die meeste aan die gang kon kry. The spirit of Dimebag Darrel lives on! Die vocalist weet net hoe om met die donker kinders van die nag te connect en hulle in te trek in die musiek in. Granted, die fans ken die band se musiek fokken goed, maar hy het die moshpit ook sonder enige moeite amper half magies beheer. Master of Puppets! Sy vocals self was nie vir my meesterlik nie maar maybe was dit ‘n geval van ‘na al die quality bands was my expectations net daai bietjie ekstra te hoog’. Of dalk was dit daai weird walkie talkie mic van hom. Needless to say, dit was een van die beste metal acts wat ek nog gesien het. Daai drummer! Jirre, hy is briljant, but then again so ook die guitaring. Tight band met ‘n onstage presence wat jy nie sommer uit enige dodgy metal club kan gaan haal nie. Die beste manier om die aand af te sluit!

Ek is elke keer na so show minder bekommerd oor die metal scene in SA maar wie weet wat die toekoms sal hou? Big up vir al die mense wat dit aan die gang hou! Respect!

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    RolbeesWitchfest 2017 – SA se metal scene word gesond gehou met ‘n Devildriver inspuiting
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    This is your one opportunity in the next couple of years – Wat Kyk Jy? interviews Tesseract

    In Uncategorized, Watkykjy Interviews deur griffinRek jou bek

    Tesseract, the progressive metal band from England, will be playing two gigs in South Africa at the end of April – Cape Town on Friday the 28th of April at Mercury Live and on Saturday the 29th of April at Rumours Rock City in Cresta. We asked around for a true local fan of Tesseract to interview them and came across Craig Borrill, guitarist for local metal band, Raptorbaby. We invited Craig over for some beers and phoned up Tessract’s guitarist, James Monteith to talk about (amongst other things) their up an coming tour to South Africa.

    What was the band’s initial response to finding out that they had a following large enough to warrant a visit to South Africa?
    Its great news to be coming down! It’s a massive privilege to be able to play all over the world, really. South Africa is a unique one because not many bands get to go there so when we found out that we had an offer, we were over the moon and we can’t wait!

    What can the fans expect in terms of the set list for the two shows? Will there be predominantly more songs off of Polaris or can we expect to be treated to your back catalogue as well?
    The sets are probably going to be a mixture of tracks across the spectrum from each album. We will be mixing it up a lot and playing songs we enjoy playing live.

    Polaris was to date your biggest sounding album with Dan back at the helm. What can the fans expect in terms of any new material? What happens next?
    I think it will be an evolution of where we are as a band at the moment, each record is a progression towards the next one and over the three albums we’ve gone more of a Progressive rock inspired route. On the next record it’s more of a mixture of experimenting with different tones and sounds from what we have done with some elements going back to some of the more heavier sounds we’ve done before. Basically we are going to explore what we have been doing even further.

    Once the tour is done and dusted and the response was to your liking, do you see South Africa as a future stop for tours?
    Oh absolutely! I think if we play some good shows and the crowds like what they hear and want us back, we will definitely come back.

    What is your personal favourite highlight of your career with Tesseract?
    A question I don’t know as there has been loads of great moments; I think one of the most significant highlights was when we did our first ever tour of the USA in 2010, it was before the first album came out and we got the opportunity to support The Devin Townsend Project across the States and some Canadian dates as well and it was our first big break of the touring circuit where we learnt a lot and the Devin guys really looked after us well, giving us tips and pointers and hooked us up with contacts for manufacturing and that kind of side of the business. That felt like the point where we went from a band just doing it on the weekend and on our own time to being a more professional outfit.

    The band saw a shuffle of vocalists which came in and lent their talents on the various albums and EPs. Would the band collaborate with them again in the future?
    Yeah maybe, I think one thing we always say is: never say never! We are always trying new things to make music the best we can make it and we have been very lucky to work with fantastic vocalists, we have no plans at the moment but we are on very good terms with Elliot Coleman and Ashe O’hara and even the first vocalist, Julien Perier. If the opportunity comes up, we will definitely jump on it.

    Give us one question about South Africa you would like to know before coming down?
    What do you recommend to eat? If there is one dish we need to try, can you tell us what it is?
    You guys have to try braaivleis, pap and sheba! (Duncan – get on it!)

    What are you personally most looking forward to experiencing in South Africa?
    I have no idea what to expect so I am really looking forward to the entire experience. From landing I am going to try fit in as much as possible, hopefully seeing the amazing landscape and country side you guys have, trying the food and drink and checking out some of the cities as well. I just want to take it all in and experience it as we are only there for a few days and I want to make the most of my time there. Experiencing different cultures and different people is great fun!

    Merch wise, a lot of fans will want their hands on original TesseracT memorabilia. Will you be bringing some down for sale?
    Yes we will! I am not entirely sure what we will be bringing down but there will be a range of shirts and possibly CD’s, we don’t know about vinyl’s but they could make an appearance as well. We will basically fit as much as we can into our luggage.

    Finally, do you have a message for all the fans coming out to see you guys?
    If you’ve listened to TesseracT before, please come to the shows because you have the opportunity to see us live and we hope you will enjoy it. If you are new to TesseracT come and check out our music, we don’t know how often we will come down to South Africa, so this is your one opportunity in the next couple of years.

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      griffinThis is your one opportunity in the next couple of years – Wat Kyk Jy? interviews Tesseract