MetalWay Festival 2006 - Sunday 30th
|Event:||The Metalway Festival|
|Written by:||wrathchild, Jeff|
MetalWay Festival 2006, Sunday by Jeff (69)
MetalWay Festival 2006, Sunday by wrathchild (18)
MetalWay Festival 2006, Saturday by Jeff (74)
MetalWay Festival 2006, Friday by Jeff (64)
MetalWay Festival 2006, Friday by wrathchild (10)
MetalWay festival, Gernika, Spain, 28/29/30 July 2006
A very hot Sunday afternoon, slowly cooling down as we were getting closer to the evening. The festival ground was filled with more people than on Friday or Saturday and the line up was... See by yourself!
Jon Oliva's Pain/Metal Church
Jon Oliva's Pain
wrathchild: First band to open on Sunday was Koma, a Spanish band that did gather quite a good number of people, despite the early hour, the sun and the fact that their music feels a bit "nu" (it actually sounds like a mix of heavy/thrash/nu, not bad). The guitarist/singer, probably influenced by James Hetfield (in the way he stands on stage for example) looked friendly and quite charismatic and this contributed to establishing a good atmosphere between the band and the audience. A lot better than what I was expecting!
wrathchild: Runic should have played after Crucified Barbara but due to another problem with flights, the schedule was changed. Runic plays something in the vain of Children Of Bodom but slightly heavier and with a more epic feel. Although they're Spanish, they sing in English: perhaps it's the reason why the audience wasn't supporting their show as they did for all the other Spanish bands during those 3 days. The band's compositions are a bit long and they didn't manage to surprise us, but the last third of their performance was better, introducing 2 female choristers and ending with a cover of At The Gates (Blinded By Fear).
wrathchild: Once again, due to a problem with the airline, Crucified Barbara's show had to be postponed and they had to play with instruments lent by the musicians of Jon Oliva's Pain. Nevertheless, they still managed to rock (did I tell you that this Sunday was "hot"?) ! Well, to tell the truth, I guess we and most of the crowd were gazing at them more than listening to what they could play... But hell, that was worth it! They included Kiss' Shout It Out Loud in their setlist, a song that they recorded for the German football team Borussia Dortmund. By the end of the gig, they experienced a problem with the bass guitar that had Nicki Wicked start a short and quite simple drum solo. The show was not exceptional, same for the music (but note that this touch of good hard rock had a positive effect on our minds) and same for the crowd. I guess that this was mostly due to the sun and the need to protect from it, but still those who were attending the show weren't really demonstrative. That got better by the end of their show, thanks to the staff and the water they provided.
Jeff:With their pure old school Hard Rock spirit, the gals of Crucified Barbara managed to do a good show. Unfortunately for her, they had to play with Jon Olivas's team equipment and it seemed that the girls had a lot of problems to play with those instruments. They had a lot of sound problems during the show but they did their maximum and, in the end, here's what I can say: First, even if those girls are beautiful "dolls", they know how to play good music, they have a great "rock'n roll" attitude and they seems really cool and friendly. A good promising young band but unfortunately a lot of people were only there to watch the girls (understand: what we can we can see on the explicit "picture"...) and that's a bit sad because it was good Hard Rock really.
Jon Oliva's Pain/Metal Church
wrathchild: Important announcement through the PA: Jon Oliva is stuck in Madrid, because of strikes going on at Iberia Airlines... Only Jon Oliva is still there, his musicians have made it to Gernika on time. Therefore, they will play a bunch of songs before letting Metal Church step on stage again. Jon Oliva's Pain's show will not be canceled but postponed at the very end of the festival, that is to say somewhere around 4am.
The crowd was therefore a bit disappointed and not willing to see a filler show. Many people took advantage of this "interlude" to relax before the promising night to come. Nevertheless, the musicians went on stage and delivered a good old rock'n roll performance, musicwise. Matt LaPorte sang when needed while the band offered some cover songs such as Hendrix' Hey Joe and Voodoo Child.
After that, Metal Church stepped in but didn't really succeed in bringing more people in front of the stage, at least before they play a faster rendition of Deep Purple's Highway Star!
Jeff: Too bad for Jon Oliva who had to play late in the night after Blind Guardian… But at least, his musicians,who were already there, plus the guys of Metal Church, played during an hour to comfort the fans… With great covers of Hendrix, Pink Floyd (Comfortably Numb) or Deep Purple (Highway Star) this moment was really cool. Big respect to the musicians (Jon Oliva's ones as well as Metal Church) who played for us and for free…
wrathchild: Memorial, Moonspell's new album, was highly praised in the medias and brought back the old Moonspell spirit of the early albums. Thus, their show was composed of songs featured on those albums only. Beginning with Finisterra, the band kept going on with Memento Mori and Blood Tells!, captivating more and more people. Great music, great sound, and needless to say that the band members are kinda charismatic. I enjoyed their show a lot, while not being extremely familiar with their music.
Jeff: The set-list was essentially composed of songs from the last album Memorial but evidently Opium and such classics were played too... Though, like with MDB the Saturday, the ambiance was missing. In my opinion, Moonspell is a band that needs its lights and dark atmosphere and it was obviously missing this afternoon. But the show was cool, and for sure Fernando and his mates were all extremely charismatic. You should go to one of their concerts if you can…
wrathchild: Within Temptation is back, back with the same show as they used to perform last year but without the screen in the back. But when I saw them last year, I was actually carried away by their music, while this time their music failed to drag my attention. This is weird since their show was not bad, the sound was good and that they attracted a fair number of people, but it lacked intensity.
Jeff: I don't even remember how many time I saw Within Temptation and you know what, since that they never change their set-list, it's becoming a bit boring. I mean they're still good no doubt but it's always the same stage, always the same songs and always the same attitude so for me it was a bit cold… Boring yes. Though, a lot of people where there to support the band and they had a lot of success.
wrathchild: After Angeles Del Infierno on Friday, here comes another legendary Spanish band: Barón Rojo. Of course, they sing in Spanish, so they're not that known outside Spain, but just by hearing the crowd sing on every chorus you can fully understand how important this band is in their country. The show wasn't spectacular and I felt like "they can do better, they can give even more to their audience". However, it was very cool to share this moment with Spanish people, especially when Barón Rojo played one of their most famous song, Resistiré.
wrathchild: That wasn't Edguy's day... First because doctors had advised Tobias Sammet not to sing due to a throat infection. Then because the band had some problems with Iberia Airlines... To the point that Tobias, after having insulted the company, made the audience promise they would never fly on Iberia from now on. Also, because there was a slight rain falling from the sky during most of their performance. And finally because Tobias experienced some problems with his microphone... Bad day, but good show! Among their newer songs and Mandrake, Lavatory Love Machine or even Out Of Control, they took the time to cover a short passage of The Trooper, and even the full Avantasia song from Tobias's Avantasia project with Helloween's bassist Markus Grosskopf joining them on stage. Since I'm one of those people who don't really like the new album, I would have enjoyed they play a different set-list, but this one was fine. A great way to start what was going to be a hell of a night!
Jeff: Edguy, that's something live! It was the first time that I saw the German band but as I predicted, it was full of fun, jokes and with a lot of speeches by Tobias. The bands played all their hits with even a cover of Iron Maiden! Markus Grosskopf joined the band for the song Avantasia. All in all, even if Tobias was a bit sick, even if they had problems with their plane and that the sound wasn't perfect, Edguy performed a big show. I cannot wait for their next show in France at Raismesfest!
wrathchild: Helloween are touring festivals after they've successfully toured the world, promoting the new Keeper album. With Andi Deris speaking to the crowd in a excellent Spanish, the band was on safe ground in Gernika. Starting with the long King For A 1000 Years, the band went on with many oldies, such as Doctor Stein, I Want Out, Future World (and the mandatory break for the crowd to sing) and even Halloween. Although Andi Deris didn't really move from the center of the stage, the show was very entertaining and perfect to do some singing!
Jeff: I heard a lot of people who were complaining, after the show, about the performance of Andi Deris but well I just think that it is always the same problem with Helloween and these wars between the fans to know who is (was) the best singer. Personally I liked a lot the show of Helloween. It was full of energy and moreover, we had the luck to listen to mega hits like Future World or I Want Out and it was just crazy. The most powerful (not violent), jumpy pit of the week end!
wrathchild: The legendary thrash band wasn't headlining this festival, therefore Dave Mustaine briefly told the crowd that they would focus on delivering music more than speeches. And that's what they did offering us tracks like Blackmail The Universe, She Wolf, Hangar 18, Kick The Chair, Trust, Peace Sells, Symphony Of Destruction, Holy Wars... The Punishment Due, etc. Mustaine even sang a verse in Spanish on Trust. The sound was sometimes a bit messy but nothing really disturbing. The frontman really appears to be cured from the arrogance that brought him fame and shame, to the point it's hard to tell if he's having fun performing... But he looked rather satisfied and respectful of this crowd, that did a great job too. Headbanging was mandatory from the beginning to the end!!!
Jeff: Megadeth is one of my favorite bands. It was the second time that I saw the band, and one more time it was amazing. Mustaine was once again special. Not so communicative, a bit "in his world" if you see what I mean. But when a band is able to do a series with hits like Peace Sells, Symphony Of Destruction to finish its set-list with the wonderful Holy Wars, was is just possible to ask for something more? No, Megadeth is Megadeth a legendary combo with a legendary frontman and if their new album confirms their return into the thrash world I'm sure that their upcoming tour will just be amazing. I'm still speechless as of today…
wrathchild: After having been amazed by Helloween, after having been blown away by Megadeth, what else could we expected to endure? Excellence maybe? That's what Blind Guardian delivered, through a very modest show (no decoration, nothing to show off, etc.) blessed with a (nearly) perfect sound and the band's greatest hits, from Valhalla to Punishment Divine including many songs from the Nightfall and Imaginations albums and introducing the new single Fly. Most of the crowd responded by singing out loud and this is precisely what made this show so good! Note that Fly proved to be a great live song, even though the audience wasn't very familiar with the lyrics.
Jeff: "Valhalla, deliverance!!!" "Bright Eye!!!" etc... Those lyrics were just two examples of what we were able to listen to during the show of Blind Guardian, and evidently Hansi was helped a lot by the crowd. Even if I regret that the stage was a bit sad (except the drums and the musicians, nothing more was on it), I think that everybody enjoyed a lot the performance of the German combo. Blind Guardian is not a fantastic band on stage, they were really static and not so charismatic but they have magical songs for live performance and finishing with The Bard Song and Mirror Mirror was exceptional. A great show to end the night (even if the night wasn't really finished… But it was too late for me to stay to see Jon Oliva's Pain - and I really regret it now…)
Jon Oliva's Pain
wrathchild: ...Back on stage! And with their leader this time! Their show was dedicated to playing all the hit songs from Savatage, so you can easily understand that the people who stayed by the stage were really pleased - most of them being more or less familiar with Savatage. Even Markus Grosskopf (Helloween) seemed to enjoy the show as he was watching them from the backstage, beer in hand. A good show for everyone, a great show for the fans and even despite the fact that Jon appeared to be a bit frustrated and that guitarist Matt LaPorte never smiled (perhaps he just never smiles).
Although given the time and circumstances, they could hardly compete with the after-party tent where quite a lot of people had fun listening to metal classics.
wrathchild: Even if I really enjoyed Moonspell (and Crucified Barbara... Ok, musically, Moonspell was a lot more interesting to me), they are no match compared to the metal titans we could see: Helloween, Megadeth, Blind Guardian, all 3 in a row! That was simply excellent. In my opinion, Runic and Within Temptation (and perhaps Edguy) were the only lows of this last day, as they can probably come up with something better.
Jeff: We got great surprises (Crucified Barbara, Edguy), little disappointments (Within Temptation) and the confirmation that legendary bands (Helloween, Megadeth, Blind Guardian) aren't legends for nothing. All in all, this last day was the best day of the festival and since that all those big bands are more or less touring this winter, I hope that you'll have the chance to see them and confirm all our good feelings.
We really spent 3 great days at Gernika. First, because of the music - there was no really big disappointment and nearly all the bands were suiting our tastes, even with such a varied line-up. Moreover, every band (except the openers) got to play for one hour (more for the headliners), so we could really feel like attending real concerts instead of zapping from one band to another.
We could bitch about the fact there was only one stage, but somehow, it would have killed us having to attend another scene: With either the rain of the heat, the balance times were great to rest and relax, when it was either raining or overheating.
And finally, while being quite a big festival (not as big as Graspop or Wacken, sure, but still important), MetalWay is a friendly one, not only for the press but for any metalhead in Gernika. Even the city perfectly accommodated with the event, we never felt like perfect strangers there.
The only bad point I can think of is the lack of emergency authorities. There were some vehicles here and there, but no indication (not even in the booklet), both in the camping and the festival area.
Other than that, everything was great and that's why we'll probably come back here some time soon!
To finish, we would like to thank the organization and the people of the MetalWay festival. We covered some other festivals before, but this one was among the bests. Everybody was friendly, from the Spanish metalheads that we met in the festival area or in the camping to the other press members (we will see you again Oskar! See ya in Paris Fred!), the bands (hail to Arch Enemy and Finntroll!) and obviously the organization of the festival. We met great people, we made new friends.
More especially, we would like to thank Ana Laballo for the wonderful welcome at the press section. Ephraïm, the stage manager, for his help and friendly attitude during the shows, our favourite barmaid and barman Ianera and Fran , and all in all, all the other people who were there to work for the festival and who welcomed us warmly.
Finally, we send once more a lot of big thanks to our festival mates (Jean "Rudi" Bulbe, Guillaume "The Warrior Of The World" and Polo "Manolito") who follow us every year on the road to the festivals, to Benoît, Julien and Sylvain (thanks for the photos) and to the "troo" Metalstormers who came to thank us for our work on Metalstorm! Wow, many thanks bros!
If you took some minutes to read this long report, we hope you understood that, in the end, you'll have to go to the MetalWay festival next year. Obviously, we will be there one more time in 2007! Hasta luego Gernika!
Jeff & wrathchild
Dreamaker, Benedictum, Hamlet, Finntroll, Nevermore, Brainstorm, The Gathering, Annihilator, Angeles Del Infierno, Kreator, Stratovarius
Axxis, Arch Enemy, Rage, Dark Funeral, Metal Church, My Dying Bride, Testament, Gamma Ray, Ministry, Celtic Frost
Photos by Jeff, Wrathchild and Sylvain. All right reserved, do not use without permission.
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