On the last day of the festival acts like Molly Sandén, Markoolio, Jill Johnson, and the headline act Takida performed. The main interest for us this night was to see the Kiss tribute act Dressed To Thrill which Ulrika had not seen live before. The alternative metal/post grunge act Takida was one of the most requested acts of the festival and this year the band managed to come to Svedala. Neither of us really likes Takida but we decided that since the band was there we were going to stay and give them a chance to convince us.
As in previous years, we were impressed by how well organized the festival is. We saw a bunch of volunteers cleaning the area, security and other staff doing their job and everyone did it with a smile; this festival is the perfect example of how a festival should be managed.
Since we arrived a bit early we saw popstar Molly Sandén, Swedish rock/country queen Jill Johnson, as well as the kid’s favorite Markoolio. We actually had a great time looking at these artists who seemed to be really happy with the crowd and the festival overall. Finally the clock had struck Kiss time and we headed over to the tent where it was time for Dressed To Thrill to treat the festival with some slick rock n’ roll. The band is a Kiss tribute band coming from the southern parts of Sweden and is really popular in the area. The band consists of skilled & known musicians who normally play in other acts, for example Andromeda. We have
David Fremberg as Paul Stanley – lead vocals, guitar
Andreas Grufstedt as Gene Simmons – bass, vocals
Christopher Hansson as Ace Frehley – guitar, vocals
Jamie Francisco Salazar Perez as Peter Criss – drums
The members perform in authentic looking Kiss makeup and gear. It seemed like we weren’t the only ones looking forward to seeing the band as the tent was packed with people eager to hear some Kiss. “Won’t Get Fooled Again” came out from the speakers and after that came a voice that introduced the best band in the world…
Dressed To Thrill
“Love Gun” kicked off the show and the band had on clothes and wigs and make up and looking like the original band. Stanley asked if we were ready for some “Detroit Rock City” and the crowd screamed yes. Smoke covered the stage and because the lights were pretty bad it was hard to get some decent pictures. Stanley said it was time for some loving and fired off “I Love It loud” and we were impressed by how tight the band members were and that they actually sounded a little better than Kiss (?) music-wise. It was getting pretty hot in the tent and what better song to play than “Hotter Then Hell”? The stage was pretty small but that didn’t stop the guys from moving around and it was especially Simmons and Frehley that used the space. Stanley said it was time to call the fire fighters because it was time for “Firehouse” which was followed by “Heaven’s On Fire”. After that it was time for Frehley to do his thing and “Shock Me”, with him on vocals continued the night.
There was nothing wrong with Frehley’s voice and he sounded great, however he need to buy a new wig because it looked like something had died on his head. Frehley did his solo with smoke coming out of his guitar. The rest of the band re-joined Frehley on stage and Stanley asked if there were any ladies in the crowd tonight and dedicated “Do You Love Me” to all the females in the tent. He wanted all the girls to scream for him as he kicked off “I Was Made For Lovin’ You” and the entire crowd, not just the girls, sang a long in the song on the top of their lungs and this was no doubt one of the most anticipated songs this night. Everyone but Simmons left the stage and it was time for his bass solo with the usual blood sequence. While he played the rest of the band came out and together they took on “Deuce”, followed by Ulrika’s favorite song, “Black Diamond”. The excellent version of the song ended the 45 minute show.
However the band didn’t leave the crowd without encores and Stanley re-entered the stage first and said – people we leave you with this – and “Shout It Out Loud” followed. The fans sang along with Stanley and the band stopped in the middle of the song and the fans took over the vocals. “We have time for another song”, Stanley said and fired off “Rock And Roll All Night” which was the ultimate party closer and the 55 minutes of madness with Dressed To Thrill were over.
What a show the guys put on! We have nothing to complain about other than wanting to see more. The members were tight and focused and all of the Stanley-sung songs were almost better than the original Paul Stanley. The only downer was the massive amount of smoke and the bad lights but that goes for almost all the shows this year and is something the organizers have to take a look at. Besides that and the bad wig on Frehley’s head it was an amazing show and we really looking forward to see the band live again.
Won’t Get Fooled Again (intro)
Detroit Rock City
I Love It Loud
Hotter Than Hell
Heaven’s On Fire
Shock Me/guitar solo
Do You Love Me
I Was Made For Loving You
Shout It Out Loud
Rock N Roll All Night
And so was it time to head over to the biggest stage in order see a glimpse of Takida closing the festival. There were a lot more people gathered to see Takida than it was at the Backyard Babies show the day before. Takida comes from a small town in the north of Sweden and released their first demo OLD back in 2000. Their first single “Losing” came six years later and the debut album came the same year titled …MAKE YOU BREATHE. The band got its big break the following year with the album BURY THE LIES and the hit single “Curly Sue”. In 2009 the band signed a deal with Roadrunner Records and started to release albums outside Scandinavia and toured in Germany together with The Butterfly Effect and started to do headline gigs in Sweden. At the beginning of 2016 the bands sixth album A PERFECT WORLD was released but the band’s alternative rock/post grunge never appealed to us and we have never seen the band live.
The clock turned 10.45 and the members showed up on stage and the audience went crazy as soon as they saw the band. Just like the other shows, the stage filled up with smoke and made the members disappear. When Anders stood in the photo pit he couldn’t see the drummer or the keyboard player at all.
Robert Petterson – lead vocals
Thomas Wallin – guitar
Mattias Larsson – guitar
Fredrik Pålsson – bass
Kristoffer Söderström – drums
Chris Rehn – keyboards
Petterson said thanks for the support and that the band was told not to talk so much but play and therefore he quickly announced the next song. Since we haven’t listened at all to the music of Takida we didn’t keep track of any set list but know they played songs like “I Am The World” and “Better”, taken from the new album A PERFECT WORLD. Petterson took a look at the clock and said that the band should be in sync with the time now and had time to do some talking. He said it was an honor to be playing at the festival and that the event was well organized, everyone was so friendly and the audience was the best. He said this was the best festival in Sweden and the crowd cheered and clapped their hands. The band members all worked hard to get the crowd going and they seemed to be having a blast on stage but were we impressed by the music? No, not at all. The band’s biggest hits “You Learn” and “Curly Sue” put a spell on the crowd which sang along at the top of their lungs. As they ended the again thanked the crowd and left the stage. The band still had 15 minutes left of their play time and they returned to do encores, by then we chose to leave the festival and head to the bus.
For us Takida was not the ultimate headline act to close the festival but since the band apparently are loved by many it was a smart move of the festival to book them. The stage was too high up and too covered in smoke and bad lights to get proper pictures during the first three songs. Maybe that is something to take under consideration next year, to not have such a high stage and to narrow down the smoke as well as better lighting.
Just as the night before the bus wasn’t jammed with people and most people seemed to live in Svedala or nearby. The festival is nice and offers entertainment for all ages, both young and old as well as families can find something they like which is pretty unique for a festival. The atmosphere is nice and friendly and the volunteer that works with the festival seems to love their work and their good spirit rubs off on visitors and bands. If we should name something that’s not so good with the festival it was the stage and the lights and it would have been nice to maybe see and hear foreign acts perform next year. Maybe bring back the third stage again so the area can be more spacious. Now it looked like a lemming trail when people moved back and forth in between the two stages.
Thanks to all the people that make this nice festival possible, your commitment means everything. Next year the festival celebrates 30 years and it’s going to be fun to see how they’re going to celebrate 3 decades of music and fun. We had a really good time as always and I hope to see you next year.
Thanks to head of the festival Markus Lindgren for help with press/photo passes.
More info about the festival here