MetalCamp 2009 – Tolmin, Slovenia, 02/07/2009 – 08/07/2009

September 17th, 2009
by Hanntu
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HannTu: As with Legion of the Damned, Amon Amarth’s watchword is consistency. With a packed touring schedule (they must have done almost every European festival going this year), they can’t afford to not have their performance down pat.

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The drizzle had started to fall, and their massive pyros were immensely welcome to the hordes in the front row (and especially to one shivering and grateful photographer…) The Amon Amarth live show is one well-oiled machine, with members swapping places on stage with rehearsed ease, and well-choreographed simultaneous headbanging/windmilling. While the two guitarists are still slightly reserved, Johan Hegg and Ted Lundstrom are the extroverts, with Ted grinning like a maniac on mescaline.

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Followers of Amon Amarth on the recent festival tour will have noticed that Johan doesn’t really change his stage banter. ‘Guardians of Asgaard’ was introduced with “This is a song about two brothers…” while ‘Live For The Kill’ is preceded by “This is the life, watching awesome bands and drinking beer. But if you live, you must LIVE! FOR! THE! KILL!”

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Anyway, although they didn’t play ‘Tattered Banners…’ (again! Major disappointment!) it was a typical Amon Amarth performance, regardless of size of crowd or stage, they always give their best – and their best is pretty damn good!

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Setlist

Twilight of the Thunder God

Free Will Sacrifice

Asator

Runes Carved to My Memory

Varyags of Miklagard

Live for the Kill

Guardians of Asgaard

Where is Your God?

Pursuit of Vikings

Thousand Years of Oppression

Victorious March

Cry of the Blackbirds

Death in Fire

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Terry: In the second consecutive year, Scandinavian bards of Asgard, Amon Amarth, stride back on to the Metal Camp stage with all the subtlety of an axe hurled into your back. With Amon Amarth’s greater success stemming from simple, catchy and melodic tones, it comes as little surprise that the level of musical polish on their weapons of sonic war produced a glare so brilliant, that the stage, at times, could barely be seen. Each new album brings along new stage anthems, and the TWILIGHT OF THE THUNDER GODS live maelstrom is undoubtedly ‘Guardians of Asgard’, which not only razed the stage in a spectacle of Thor’s wrath, but also surely gave hundreds of followers sore necks the following morning. Coming away from the show, the genius of Amon Amarth becomes apparent. Buying their CDs and merchandise simply gives an opportunity to know the words to sing, the passages to headbang and the tiniest of insights of what words to sing, the passages to headbang and the tiniest of insights of what was absolutely brought to the stage at Metal Camp. The Gods would be proud.

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HannTu: I wanted to check out the Belgian band Aborted on the second stage, and was mortified to find out that they were on at almost the same time as Amon Amarth. I needn’t have stressed out, they apparently did not even make it to the festival at all.

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HannTu: Dimmu Borgir were initially pencilled in to play second last on the main stage, and the Swedish industrial glam band Deathstars were to play last. Dimmu however suffered the same logistics problems that Sodom and Satyricon had before them, and half their gear apparently had not even arrived at all. Thus Deathstars played before them, which I gave a miss.

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Dimmu Borgir finally took to the stage, and the photographers were lining up at the entrance of the pit ready to enter the photo pit. We were then turned away by massive security guys (not the regular Metal Camp pit crew – at least, none that I recognised) who told us we could not even shoot from the side of the stage, let alone shoot from the pit. Basically, no photos at all, as Trease found out while trying to take a photo with my small Nikon compact. I saw some photographers being manhandled and yelled at when they tried to take covert photos from the side of the stage, and I even saw a bouncer gesticulating at one of the photographers in the crowd trying to shoot with a pro camera. I also read somewhere that Dimmu cut their set short by quite some distance. So fuck this shit, and fuck Dimmu Borgir. I couldn’t be arsed to watch their set to the bitter end.

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What I will say though is that it was very clear that some of Dimmu’s stage apparel had not arrived either, as Silenoz and ICS Vortex were wearing Metal Camp t-shirts instead of their usual black, leather and spikes – and for the first few songs, Shagrath was wearing aviators (to hide his lack of contact lenses?). Maybe they didn’t want any pro photos of their ‘stripped down’ look, I dunno. It’s really silly, who’s going to think less of a band just because they weren’t in stage attire? Anyway, it gave me an excuse to sneak off for an early night, as tomorrow would be a really full day.




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