I headed out to the festival at 14 and could walk around and check out the really cool site and people. Wow.. What an amazing place but probably not if you are Christian. Lots of references to Satan and Hell, etc. Love it!!!!
Blind Guardian was the first band that I saw at 15. This German melodic metal band has been around for many years now and the singer said this was the first time they have played in Denmark in 20 years!! They played well, had good sound and the audience was into and singing some of the songs. Singer had a great voice and connection with the audience.
Set List: 9th Wave, Requiem, Nightfall, Fly, Tanelorn, Time stands still, Imaginations, Bard’s Song, Valhall
Black Peaks, from the UK were next on the Pandemonium Stage (the smallest of 3 stages). The small crowd was digging this young band that just released their first album this year. Singer was pretty intense at times as was the music. Sort of indie rock meets hardcore. Poppy soft vocals mixed with angry stuff. The sound mix was not that good. Guitars way too low and it would be like this for all the bands. Not sure what was up with the sound people?? Drums were always way too loud all day on this stage.
Set List: Glass Built Peaks, White Eyes, Intro, Set in Stone, To take the first turn, Drones, Say you Will, Saviour
Dropkick Murphy’s were the first band on the main stage and had a huge audience. The band has been playing in Denmark for 20 years and has a strong following here. I had last seen them many years ago at the Roskilde Festival. Probably 15 years ago. They played a solid show but had a not very well defined sound. You could rarely hear the guy playing bagpipes or penny whistle, etc… Voices, drums and bass were ok but the two three guitars etc. had no definition. They have a lot less energy and play more melodic normal rock sounds than what I remember when they were much harder and punkier… aged????
August Burns Red was next up on the Hades stage and I had never heard of these guys. A mix of angry metal, some technical guitar wizard stuff but mostly very angry energetic metal with some good grooves at times. I was worn out by the vocalist though by the end. The guitar player with the green guitar played some really cool stuff sometimes. The audience was large and seem to know the band and be into it, which was good but the sound was awful. The drums were 70% of the sound.
A bit too much the same…. Has not changed 70% of the set in 30 years but what the hell…
Set List: Vincent Price Intro, The Black Widow, No More Mr. Nice Guy, Under My Wheels, Billion Dollar Babies, Woman of Mass Distraction, Guitar solo Nita Strauss, Poison, Halo of Flies, Feed My Frankenstein, Ballad of Dwight Fry, Killer, I love the Dead, Pinball Wizard, Fire, Suffragette City, Ace of Spades, 18, Schools out, Elected
I saw a 10 mins of Converge but it was now pissing down rain and everyone was trying to find shelter and there is not a whole lot here. I managed to get into the main beer tent and get a seat. Had a chat with some folks from York, UK while people sang, and headbanged to the DJ who played Metallica, Slayer, etc… eventually a band started to play in the tent and did Paranoid, Master of Puppets, etc.. I finally had to leave to go pee so then I just walked around in the rain and not a cheap rain jacket. Luckily for us it was very warm out. My feet were totally soaked and most of my clothes but I was not cold.
The Scorpions started at 22:30 and the rain, wind, thunder, lightning all came as well as they blew into town. Killer visual show and sound. Having Mickey Dee on drums gives that band an extra kick in the ass. What a drummer. The band played a cool set. My fave part was of course, the 70’s medley with Top of the Bill, Steamrock Fever, Speedy’s Coming and Catch your Train!
Great band…. Very wet now..
Set List: Going Out With a Bang, Make It Real, The Zoo, Coast to Coast, Top of the Bill / Steamrock Fever / Speedy's Coming / Catch Your Train, We Built This House, Send Me an Angel, Wind Of Change, Rock 'n' Roll Band, Dynamite, Drum Solo (by Mikkey Dee), Blackout, No one like you, Big City Nights, Still loving you, Rock you like a Hurricane.
With the Dead was slow and heavy compared to everything else and like before, guitar was too low. Very bass heavy sound. I had seen the band at Roadburn and they were great. Still very good today but the vibe was so different and I was not really in the mood… Cool new band… Great day one
Set List: Crown of Burning Stars, The Cross, Nephthys
Living With the Dead, I Am Your Virus, Screams From My Own Grave
I missed the first two bands, Solstafir from Iceland and Monuments. I arrived to see about 1/3 of the Tremonti concert. This was their last show on their European tour. Tremonti is the side project of the Alter Bridge guitarist. It was heavier than Alter Bridge and less catchy and melodic. Some cool stuff and some great guitar playing.
I caught a few tracks of Beartooth but this was nothing for me. Angry aggressive metal. Not much more to say… It was really hot today, around 27C and much less wind. They say we will have rain again in the late evening.. No sign of it now…
Entombed AD, finally a metal act with a groove of sorts! This was the largest audience I had seen at the festival on the smallest Pandemonium stage. Entombed AD is not the real Swedish Entombed band but the original first singer playing old Entombed stuff and new material that they write. Crowd was really into it and they sounded great.
Megadeth had a super cool futuristic stage set up with great high resolution screens. They had just played CopenHell 2 years ago but they always draw in the fans. I had not seen them in 7 years or so when they were at Sweden Rock. The crowd was huge and the sound so much better but still very drum heavy but at least not totally destroying the sound. Megadeth are very cool. They have a lot of variety in their songs and super cool movies and visuals for every song. The kind of lead guitar playing is the least variable as their fast ripping leads start to sound all the same. Dave does not talk much, just gets down to it. I saw the entire show and it was great. Respect..
I missed Redwood Hill and hung out to rest the legs on the hill waiting for King Diamond. I thought I saw an old friend of mine, Mikael in the distance but did not think he would be here, so I did not pursue him. When I went up front on the left side for King Diamond there he was and it was him! How cool.. I had not seen him in years.. not a lot of time to catch up before the KING started.
The King Diamond show was an awesome piece of musical theatre! Super cool stage, actors, great sound up here in the front and a great mix of his solo songs and one Mercyful Fate track. I had a great time but about 4 songs into the concert it started to rain again and it rained the entire rest of the fucking concert and sometimes quite a lot. I had a rain frock this time though but my feet were still very wet. Best show of the day for sure. Great time..
Set List: Out from the Asylum, Welcome Home, Sleepless Nights, Halloween, Eye of the Witch, Melissa, Come to the Sabbath, "Them", Funeral, Arrival, A Mansion in Darkness, The Family Ghost, The 7th day of July 1777, Omens, The Possession, Abigail, Black Horseman, Insanity
Abbath, the singer from Immortals, side project were on at 00:45 and it was a bit of a mess now especially as in front of the Hades stage was a huge lake. I found a place close to the barrier to start and thought about leaving as I was wet and tired but I stayed and glad that I did as this was my 2nd fave show of the day. Powerful stuff but some slower songs as well. They also had low guitar and too high drums, which seems the norm for this festival and probably why I won’t come back again. I need better sound than this. What a let down that it is so consistently bad.
Artillery, the old Danish thrash band, and close the night off started at 01:15. I did not think I would make to see them and only made it through half the set. It was a lot of new material that I did not know at all. I only have the first 4 records. A decent crowd of a few hundred but pretty small. Most people left after the soaking at King Diamond.
It was cool day but I was wet and tired again…
Blind Faith is a mental prison was the message. Singer reminded me of Mille from Kreator at times. Excellent band and great sound on this stage today. Different sound man, perhaps?
Rival Sons was next up on the big stage. It had been 4-5 years since I had seen them at Sweden Rock. They now have a keyboard player. The band played a very well crafted and planned set of classic rock with blues. Very Led Zeppelin inspired at times but with out the danger or excitement. The polished made for TV version of Led Zeppelin. The singer was by far the best I heard at the entire festival. He really is fucking great. The band is solid and they have some really great songs but the two new songs they played were not very good (Hollow Bones, Tied up). The blues ballad that followed was very emotional and excellent. They rocked out more after that. Cool band but not growing in the way or direction I like. but that is just me..
Set List: Electric Man, Secret, Pressure and Time, Hollow Bones Pt. 1, Tied Up, Baby Boy, Where I've Been, Torture, Fade Out, Get What's Coming, Open My Eyes, Keep On Swinging
We did not see Bersærk or Dark Funeral (who I was told were really cool). Black Sabbath was next and we were pretty excited. I hung out with Nils and Anders and we got in the front section about 15m back, dead center from Iommi’s stacks.. You could hear guitar directly from his amps!
Anyway, what a blast to hear these classic songs- After Forever, Into the Void, Snowblind, War Pigs, Fairies wear Boots, Behind the walls of Sleep, Iron Man, The Warning (only 1min before the drum solo), Children of the Grave, and of course Paranoid. During Dirty Women, Tony got to take a really long guitar solo and it was so nice to hear him just play. Wish the would play All moving parts stand Still instead of Dirty Women from Technical Ecstasy. The 90mins went by way too fast and it was a pity we did not get to hear Hand of Doom. Not sure why they dropped it at this show. A really fun show. Had a great time.. Black Sabbath is one of my all time favorite bands and songs like After Forever, Into the Void, etc.. have such killer guitar riffs… Ozzy can’t sing them anymore but what the hell. We had fun.
The last band of the festival was Bombers, as Norwegian Motorhead cover band lead by Immortal front man, on bass and vocals. Nils, Jesper and Magnus and I had a fun time and the sound was great and a pretty good and drunk crowd. A lot of wasted people at 01.30 in the morning. The weather was great now and all the rain from Black Sabbath was gone. It rained half of their set or more but not that heavy like the previous days. Anyway, they opened with Bomber and they play fucking fast. Way faster than the original songs. It actually does not work very well as although he can usually sing it that 20% faster and the bass and drums work ok, the lead guitar parts are played at normal speed and it just sounds off… It was a great set of songs and we had a blast but they would be better if they slowed it down. The stoned vibe of Motorhead is totally lost when put on so much speed. Fun way to end the festival.
Set List: Bomber, Stoned Dead Forever, The hammer, Shoot you in the back, Over the top, stay clean, killed by death, Orgasmatron, Iron Fist, metropolis, We are the road crew, Ace of Spades, Overkill
CopenHell is a great festival. 20,000 people this year, which is double the normal size. It was a lot of people but it worked. Never a problem to get food, drinks or pee. No huge cues… Well organized. My biggest complaint is the poor sound for 50% of the bands.. Way too loud drums just ruined it for so many bands… Great job from the organizers to pull this one off. Super cool place where you can disappear from your normal life for 8 hrs or so…. Awesome..
here are some more fotos of the festival site... and cool, strange people....