SWEDENROCK 2011

August 1st, 2011
by Arto Lehtinen


Sweden Rock 2011: THURSDAY

 

DUFF MCKAGAN’S LOADED

The former Guns’n Roses bassist Duff McKagan doesn’t need further introduction here but perhaps a small priming of his band Duff McKagan’s Loaded would be in place. The band was originally formed in 1999 by Duff.  In 2001 bassist Jeff Rouse, guitarist Mike Squires and drummer Geoff Reading joined in the band’s ranks and their debut album DARK DAYS was released soon after. The second album SICK came out eight years later in 2009 and soon after Isaac Carpenter took over drum duties. The latest album THE TAKING came out in 2011 and since its release Duff and co have been playing around the world supporting the new album. It was a quite strange decision to put Loaded to be the opening band of Thursday but that’s how it went. The show opened up with new album tracks “Dead Skin”, “Executioner” and “We Win” and although the field wasn’t fully packed there were a great number of people in the audience. Despite the time of the show Duff seemed to be in a really good mood and the band was altogether performing with a great feel. As expected the set focused mainly on the new album by doing did nine tracks. The rest of the 17 song set consisted of older Loaded tracks, a cover of Misfits “Attitude” and a pair of Guns’n Roses classics “Dust N’ Bones” and “It’s So Easy” which “surprisingly” got the noisiest response from the crowd. It’s obvious that Loaded has always been more or less a project band what Duff has been doing when he’s not been busy with other bands like Velvet Revolver and perhaps for that reason they seem not to be too well known, at least yet. The band’s music is way more punk oriented rock than hard rock and that’s what makes the biggest difference between Loaded and Duff’s older bands. All in all, this was a pretty good, solid performance but nothing that memorable.

Dead Skin

Executioners Song

We Win

Sleaze Factory

Wrecking Ball

Dark Days

Seattlehead

Cocaine

Easier Lying

Indian Summer

Sick

Follow Me to Hell

Your Name

Lords of Abbadon

Attitude

Dust N’ Bones

It’s So Easy

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BUCKCHERRY

Buckcherry is one of the finest modern hard rock bands formed in the 90’s. So far Buckcherry has released five full length studio album including 2006’s multi-platinum seller 15 and the latest ALL NIGHT LONG which came out in 2010. The timing wasn’t the best possible for Buckcherry’s debut show at Sweden Rock because when they opened the show with "Dead" heaven went dark gray and it started to rain heavily. "Rescue Me" and the new album title track went down smoothly and circumstances didn’t seem to bother the band at all,vice versa they seemed to receive some further boost from the rain. It must be said that Joshua Todd is one of the best frontmen of his generation. He resembles a lot a young Steven Tyler, not only vocally but also externally they have a lot in common although Joshua does have more tattoos for sure.. As the set went on weather also turned better. Ironically when the band closed the set with their biggest hit to date, "Crazy Bitch", the sun started to shine again. Anyway, the show was great and there were no un-necessary songs in the set. Or… actually there was one… how about dropping "It’s a Party" and do "Dirty Mind" instead because it’s still Buckcherry’s best song to date. Maybe next time then? 

Dead

Rescue Me

All Night Long

Everything

Oh My Lord

It’s a Party

Next 2 You

Lit Up

Slammin’

Lawless & Lulu

Sorry

Crazy Bitch

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MOONSPELL

Moonspell’s heydays were in the the mid 90’s when WOLFHEART (1995) and IRRELIGIOUS (1996) saw the light of day. For some reason the latest outputs haven’t reached the same success and status amongst the metal community. What a pity as the Portuguese dark metallers proved that they are still an absolutely great live band on the stage. Pity the sadness as a handful of people had arrived to see Moonspell preaching the mefisto. It’s hard to say if the band has lost its success or what the basic reason was for the lack of audience?! Maybe it was Accept who stole the audience ? 

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QUEENSRYCHE

The legendary progressive metallers (well they used to be prog-metal) out of Seattle have been a regular visitor at Sweden Rock. The five-piece has always managed to surprise the audience by offering a real variable set. This time the set was kicked off by a song “Get Started” from the latest offering DEDICATED TO CHAOS and it was followed by the classic material from PROMISED LAND and of course the OPERATION album saga. However the set list consisted of the old and new material from bands different eras. The audience seemed not to be too thrilled with these newer songs but when songs such as “Jet City Woman” or”Empire” got roared out of speakers, the crowd mostly woke up from their coma. As for Queensryche’s performance, well it felt the band would have lost its biggest passion and excitement by being on the stage and playing from the heart. Vocalist Geoff Tate still has his powerful voice and he did move a lot on stage meanwhile Eddie Jackson and Michael Wilton mostly concentrated on playing. It was noticeable that the new guitarist Parker Lundstrom hasn’t reached his status in the band yet. The 20 year younger kid handled his playing with the professional grip, but more with lack of truly enthusiasm and passion. Even though the biggest success days are gone for Queensryche, they can still deliver such an enjoyable and professional show.    

Get Started

Damaged

I Don’t Believe In Love

A Dead Man’s Words

Hit the Black

The Hands

At 30,000 Ft

NM 156

Screaming In Digital

Real World

The Lady Wore Black

All Around The World

Walk In The Shadows

Silent Lucidity

Jet City Woman

Empire

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MORBID ANGEL

The legendary Morbid Angel unleashed the new album after the eight year break. The album caused an unbelievable shitstorm amongst the diehard fans. Despite the raging negative criticism toward the album, but the four piece, or should it be said, both David Vincent and Trey Azagthoth with the back—up forces sound and still is in the vicious and deadly strike on the stage. The set was kicked off with the classic material from the first three albums. All in all the whole set was the entirely death metal blitzkrieg of the classic tunes pleasing the most hard core fans for sure. “Bil Ur Sag” has been on the setlist for a while, but it is of course wishful thinking if more songs got played from the Tucker era.  Morbid Angel of course presented the new material at Sweden Rock. “Nevermore” has already belonged to the set during a few years. Another one was “Existo Vulgore”. Both the songs are pure classic and technical Morbid Angel – Trey’s killer and brutal riffs and the blasting drum work by Tim Yeung and of course David Vincent’s brutal approach being the trademark of the whole Morbid Angel sound. The third new one was “I Am Morbid”. All right this song was debuted live for the first time. It definitely sounded more death metal oriented than on the album. These “I Am Morbid – Are You Morbid” chants sounded kind of corny. Morbid Angel was Morbid Angel, total death metal from the beginning to the end, these ambient effects were played on the background when the four piece was taking a short break.

Immortal Rites

Fall From Grace

Rapture

Pain Divine

Maze of Torment

Sworn to the Black

Existo Vulgoré

Nevermore

Angel of Disease

Lord of All Fevers and Plague

Chapel of Ghouls

Encore:

Dawn of the Angry

Where the Slime Live

Bil Ur-Sag

God of Emptiness

World of Shit (The Promised Land)

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JOAN JETT & THE BLACKHEARTS

Former Runaways member Joan Jett is definitely a figurehead for several generations of female rockers. Jett’s brand of rock & roll is stripped-down but loud loaded with overpowering hooks and melodies. She’s one of the very few female rock artists who have managed to make a career for over thirty years. After witnessing her brilliant performance it can be said that there’s no end in sight for a while for Jett. Unlike her former colleague Lita Ford, who did perform at Sweden Rock few years ago, Joan was still full of energy, she still looks pretty good and have ton’s of great material to present. The energetic set kicked off with crowd favorite “Bad Reputation” followed by Runaways classic “Cherry Bomb” and “Do You Wanna Touch Me”. It seemed that Joan was really into it. Great singing, guitar playing and good contact with audience during the whole set. Another great strength was longtime drummer Thommy Price (ex- Billy Idol) who played really firmly through the set. Maybe the set list could have been more exciting. Instead of so many covers and Runaways songs she could have done a couple more of her own tracks but other than that little beauty spot there was nothing to complain about.  A great performance indeed!    

Bad Reputation

Cherry Bomb

Light Of Day

Do You Wanna Touch Me

Change The World

Androgynous

You Drive Me Wild

Fetish

The French Song

Love Is Pain

I Love Playing With Fire

Naked

Fake Friends

I Wanna Be Your Dog

I Love Rock N Roll

Crimson & Clover

I Hate Myself For Loving You

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THE CULT

The Cult is very strange band in many ways. They hardly do any interviews or overall occur too much in public but they still have strong following around the globe and their shows are always sold out everywhere. The reason behind that is very clear and simple because there aren’t many bands in business with such a strong catalog of brilliant songs behind them. Lead singer Ian Astbury is very controversial person who does interest people and that’s not negative commercial wise. It’s now been four years since band released its latest album BORN INTO THIS and although there’s been strong rumors about the band quitting, once again, but they still go on and there might even be another Cult album in the works in the fall? The Sweden Rock set opened up with ELECTRIC album classic “Rain” and worked out great. Astbury’s voice was in fine form although man’s appereance was a bit, how to say it, confusing. Astbury has gotten several extra pounds during the last few years. He was also now sporting a untreated, half-long beard and some really uncool sports type of clothes mixed with… just something. Can’t help of thinking… maybe some stylistic help would be useful for Ian? But anyway, like said before, his voice was working great and that’s after all the most important thing here. Crowd favorites “Sweet Soul Sister” and “Firewoman” worked as always and it was great to hear a few rarely played songs as DREAMTIME’s “Horse Nation” and “Nirvana” from LOVE. Guitarist Billy Duffy is today the opposite of his colleague on the right. The man is always looking cool and this time made no difference. His playing is somewhat unaffected but really solid and he definitely has his own unique sound which is impossible to confuse with anybody else. The biggest difference to 80’s/90’s Cult to nowadays is sitting behind the drum kit. John Tempesta (ex-Testament, Exodus, White Zombie etc.) has been playing with The Cult since 2006 and he’s definitely giving an extra kick needed for some of the old classics. “Lil’ Devil” has never sounded as tight as it does now and that’s because of Tempesta for sure. Other than Ian’s look there’s nothing to complain here. If you’re a fan of excellent, old traditional rock, then The Cult is your choice. 

Rain

Everyman and Woman Is A Star

Electric Ocean

Sweet Soul Sister

Horse Nation

Rise

Nirvana

The Phoenix

Fire Woman

Spiritwalker

Lil’ Devil

Dirty Little Rockstar

Wild Flower

She Sells Sanctuary

Love Removal Machine

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GWAR

All right – GWAR is musically pure rubbish. – D class punk thrash hybrid chaos. It is obvious the music is not the main point at all. Instead their main point is their shows being incredible fests of blood, slime and a strange sense of humour and above all idiotic comments and speeches. But that’s GWAR. Apparently six or seven or more hilarious masked figures hassled on the stage. The show was such an insane experience that words are not enough to describe. Therefore check out the pics below… 

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JUDAS PRIEST 

K.K. Downing’s departure from Judas Priest caused a shockwave in the whole metal world. No metal fan could understand why K.K. Downing had to pull out of the band on the eve of the massive farewell tour.  A real battlefront runaway from such a legendary guitarist who has spent all of his life in the band with the up’s and downs. However the replacement Richie Faulkner turned out to be the right man to fill the big shoes left by Downing. To be honest, he definitely looked like a cloned and young version of Downing. His performance and moving on the stage was well carried and planned to fit with the rest of the band. As for Rob Halford’s voice, it was in extremely good shape! The man has struggled with voice problems on previous tours but at the moment his voice didn’t even let him down on the demanding parts of “Painkiller”. Therefore it is going to be interesting how Halford’s voice will stand all the tormenting long tour stress and demand on upcoming long farewell tour. The set list was a pure magic and a real heavy metal feast for all the Priest fans, as it kind of covered the long respectful career from the early days up to the latest NOSTRADAMUS opus but still  leaving the Tim Ripper Owens era out. If guitarists and Halford did an excellent job so did bassist Ian Hill with his own unique style. Drummer Scott Travis handled his instruement with professional grip without missing a beat.  It’s a fact that Glenn Tipton’s playing is still tight but however his movement has slowed down during the past few years and it’s is understandable but the man is still banging his head at the age of 65! To sum up things up, the band did put on an awesome show. The massive stage construction completed with great laser-like lights combined with an outstanding setlist was something worth experiencing for sure!  

Rapid Fire

Metal Gods

Heading Out to the Highway

Judas Rising

Starbreaker

Victim of Changes

Never Satisfied

Diamonds & Rust

Dawn of Creation

Prophecy

Night Crawler

Turbo Lover

Beyond the Realms of Death

The Sentinel

Blood Red Skies

The Green Manalish

Breaking the Law

Painkiller

The Hellion

Electric Eye 

Hell Bent for Leather

You’ve Got Another Thing Comin’

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