June 23-25th, 2016
Anamaria Carla Ionita
Here’s to another year in weather hell. I think Denmark has one of the weirdest climates in the universe. Within the 3 days of the festival, I managed to get both a farmer’s tan (in the shape of a butterfly so yey me) and a super nasty cold. As every year, it rained every single day, but this time ACDC sent their regards with huge thunderstorms.
This year the line-up was a bit soft: as in 4 big bands and a tone of small ones.
Thursday was an early one; prepared with some cold beers I went to see Blind Guardian, Dropkick Murphys, Alice Cooper and Scorpions.
Blind Guardian was one of the poorest and stiffs concert I have ever seen in my entire life. I don’t know if Hansi was just tired, not feeling well due to all the heat, or he is just old but he barely moved an inch and the entire representations was a bit on fast-forward. It seemed like they just wanted to be out of there as soon as possible.
Truth be told, I was never a big fan of Dropkick Murphys, I’ve heard of them and listen to a couple of songs but it just didn’t do it for me. I was pleasantly surprised seeing their performance: full of energy and good vibes even in the horrible hell heat. The sound went for terrible to ok-ish as the concert progressed. What can I say; Al Barr took over Helviti’s new ramp out in the crowd and bassist Ken Casey was sweating like there was no tomorrow: the boys were back in town!
The day’s first headliner was legend Alice Cooper. I’ve seen his shows one could say too many times, and all of them are 80% the same. I was really curious to see if after last time I saw them (more than 4 years ago) anything changed, or if he got deeper into the routine.
The beginning was promising, ‘The Black Widow” and “No More Mr. Nice Guy” held the crowd high. After that I’d say Alice turn on autopilot mode.
Hits like “Poison” and “Feed My Frankenstein” were obviously among the favorites.
In terms of show, he frankensteined himself, went mad, died, and came back from the dead like Jesus did many many moons ago.
The band loves the dead and the commemoration began. The tribute to Keith Moon started in a form of a fine game version of The Who’s “Pinball Wizard”, it went into Hendrix’s “Fire”, in a heavier “Suffragette City” from Bowie and the last number in the cover parade was *drumrolls* “Ace Of Spades” Who would have guessed?
After all the oldies but goldies, came another oldie “I’m Eighteen” and “School’s Out”. The “Elected” encore came with a fun show of a masked Trump and Clinton. Everybody laughed but there wasn’t that spark as before, they should have probably picked something more well-known and less offensive for the Trump lovers in the crowed. Conclusion Alice was elected president and threw his money to the public.
Right before Scorpions gig the clouds started pulling in and everything went dark. Lightning started to struck and all I was thinking of was I hope there are no aliens in the ground as in ‘War of the Worlds’. I was even considering leaving the festival early – it was that bad!
Smart me would have realized that every year it rains at Copenhell and it would probably be a good idea to bring a rain coat, or at least something to protect my camera, but then again, smart me was busy celebrating her bachelor completion.
I’ve never seen them live and I might have had really high expectations and they didn’t disappoint. The rain was the little extra that made it all perfect; it’s something about rain and ballads that chicks as yours truly, really dig. On “Wind of Change” everybody forgot that they were soaking wet and most likely wake up with pneumonia the next day, and started singing their lungs out.
This is the 50th anniversary tour for Scorpions and you can’t even tell, they were incredible and I dare to say they aged like wine.
Next day, got to the festival really early to catch Amon Amarth, Epica and Megadeth.
As my tshirt said I am a ‘Viking bitch’ and I’ve seen Amon Amarth on tour with each one of their albums (ok ok, almost all of them) and every time it was mesmerizing. I adore Johan’s happy face and all the energy they give to the crowd. Their last album “Jomsviking” was a low 2.5 out of 5. I was disappointed in the lack of diversity they showed this time; all of the songs had the same riffs and melody, just different lyrics.
I haven’t been reading up on the public’s opinion about it (bachelor problems) but I think I got a glimpse of it at Copenhell.
The show started in full force with “Pursuit of Vikings”, everybody was having a great time headbanging alongside the band. Shortly after, the enthusiasm went down while the new songs were coming up. The band started and ended the shows with the crowd’s favorites such as: “Guardians of Asgaard” and “Twilight of the Thunder Gods”, throwing in between Loki’s stories a “Destroyer of the Universe”.
It was a nice concert, Johan drank with the public and he was so happy that he announced another concert in Denmark in December. All in all it was a good concert, the only negative aspect was that I felt that the drums held back a bit.
Beer pause and went to see Epica’s first appearance in Denmark, taking over Hades Friday at 18.15. They have a really good dynamics in the songs where the hard elements mix very well with the symphonic and I was pretty excited to see them. That, and also because Simone Simons is hot as f*ck.
The sound saw perfect from the start (please read through the lines and notice my sarcasm). After a couple of minutes of too much of a higher voice and then too low, the sound mixer finally figured it out.
It was a good performance and the setlist was on point in my opinion alternating the softer songs with the heavy ones.
Next stop was one of the festival’s headliners: Megadeth, one of the greatest thrash bands the world has ever seen. Mustaine took over the stage with “Hanger 18” from ‘Rust in Piece’ and then went on to “The Threat Is Real” from this year’s ‘Dystopia’ – which is one of the band’s best albums in many years.
Mustaine was hiding between his gingery hair locks the entire time and that made it quite difficult to snap a picture of his face without making him look like a Sasquatch. Trush be told, he has always been like that and it wouldn’t be fair to criticize him now. They continued with “Death From Within”, “Dystopia”, “Post American World” and ”Poisonous Shadows” from the latest album. It wasn’t a greatest hits festival set list, which made the band look more alive, rather than ancient puppets playing the same old same old for the 1000th time. “Symphony of Destruction”, “Peace Sell” and “Holy Wars” was an impressive trio to end with, but I think the concert was too big in pure guitar riffs and too little in physical activity.
Next day, Saturday, was the day that went down in history, well… for me at least. I grew up with Black Sabbath and always dreamed of seeing them live with Ozzy; and now I managed to check that off from my bucket list.
I would like to start by saying that it was a HUGE disappointment that not all the photographers were allowed in the pit, but only 4. I am also pissed at the organizers for saying that the band’s management hand selected only 3 (!!) Danish photographers to cover the event, but in fact they handed out 4 photo stickers to the very first people they saw in the press tent. How is that fair? BOOO !!!
Anyways, I managed with the help of a really nice photographer with a too-expensive-for-my-face lenses to snap a decent picture of Ozzy; again, BOOO organizers.
Back to Sabbath, yes, the kings of metal, the legends, the dark prince, had taken over Copenehll.
As the very first sound of “Black Sabbath”, the crowd went wild, and you could feel it right down up to your toes that it will be something BIG and sure enough Ozzy’s voice roared in the night.
He sang, loved the crowd, sang some more, jumped and threw around some “God bless you” and more “we love you”.
They had a pretty nice set list with songs sucha s “War Pigs”, “Snowblind”, “Iron Man”, “Dirty Women” and last but not least “Paranoid”.
It was a grandiose night, that I will never forget, and it was the perfect ending to this year’s Copenhell.
Until next time!