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WEBCounter by GOWEB    

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   WACKEN OPEN AIR 2004
the WOA cow and screen between the two main stages Wacken (D)
August 5th-7th 2004

http://www.wacken.com

THURSDAY

This year's edition of Wacken "Metal Mecca" Open Air can be described as HOT. I know, I know... anything's better than rain! The only "rain" we got was the wonderful water from the waterhoses (to cool the audience down), some water from Paddy's waterbottle ;) and the showers. So, lots of sun and lots of fun - and less hectic! Kudos to the organisation for trimming the schedules a bit: later starts, less bands on the Party Stage (synchronized with the Black Metal Stage) and less (and in general smaller) bands on the W.E.T. Stage. I think that was a big improvement!
the Morrigan's Pit crew (Paddy is missing) Like last year, Silkie, Cora, Katalin, Nico and I arrived early on thursday morning, this time we could immediately start putting up our tents. Brian and Micheline travelled by train later that day and after several delays they got stuck in "down-town" Wacken after midnight and had to wait there until the next morning for the pass booth to open again and come and join us at the campground. Paddy was also at the festival with his Conny, so we had the majority of Morrigan's Pit there to cover the festival for you :) After a day of sun, beer, water and BBQ, the festival started as usual with the traditional "A Night To Remember". Subtitle to this year's edition of WOA was "metalheads against racism" by the way. (Marlies)

Zodiac Mindwarp © Nico Wobben As always, "A Night To Remember" started at 6pm. This year legendary rock'n'roll musicians opened the festival, ZODIAC MINDWARP and his band, The Love Reaction. They are not twenty years anymore but their music still boils blood. Though Mark did not do his best vocal performance ever but there is no wonder, he was in hospital just two weeks before their Wacken show. Fortunately they did not cancel this gig, so for the first time in my life I had the chance to see them live. And despite of being born in 1958 and having grizzeld hair Mr. Preacher's whole being still emanates manliness and red-bloodedness (at the moment he lives in London with his canary and two budgies). He is still a rock-star, his age does not matter in this question.
They started with "High Priest Of Love", followed by "Kick Start Me For Love" and this combination was a perfect kick-off for their show, creating the proper atmosphere. Among others soon came "Backseat Education", "King Of Love", "Fucked By Rock" and "Feed my Frankeinstein" - yes, this song was originally written by Zodiac Mindwarp - and of course it would not had been a Zodiac Mindwarp gig if they had not played "Prime Mover". Just thinking about the song now, weeks after the festival, I start singing and dancing around in my apartment (time to listen to their albums…. ). And what a shame that many people in the audience seemed not to know them. I know 2004 is not the age of rock'n'roll but there are bands you must know, of course you do not have to like them, if you want to talk about this kind of music - and Zodiac Mindwarp and The Love Reaction is definitely one of them. Now you may wonder at my enthusiasm about Zodiac Mindwarp, as I am mostly known as a thrash and viking metal fan, but the explanation is simply, I stick to the bands I grew up with. (Katalin)

Motörhead © Nico Wobben An other British band lined up to entertain us half an hour later, from the dirtier kind. 29 years of existence, 19 full-length studio albums, countless bootleg materials and thousands of gigs paved the way of MOTÖRHEAD to WOA, again. This was not the first time they played here and hopefully not the last one either. I am sure in 1975 fans of the space-rock band Hawkind were pissed off when the band's bass player had to face problems at the American-Canadian border during their tour but that event led to the forming of Motörhead. They gained thousands of fans over the years and lots of musicians praise them as their influences. Motörhead made their mark on the extreme music scene.
The picture of "Inferno", their latest album, was hanging in the background and "We are Motörhead" kicked off their show. Lemmy, wearing sunglasses and his obligatory Stetson hat stood on the stage, asking "Are we loud enough?" and smiled to the great amount of fans who gathered to see them. Phil Campbell was wearing his well-known knitted cap and a black long-sleeve, as if it had not been warm enough and of course he even did not forget to light a cigarette. The world's loudest rock band gave a decent show again though Mikkey Dee had to face some problem with his drumkit, as it almost fell apart but fortunately had been fixed till his drum solo came later on. And the well-known songs (not in particular order) rolled on: "Civil War", entrance area © Katalin Sipos "R.A.M.O.N.E.S.", "Shoot In The Back", "No Class", "God Save The Queen", "Metropolis", "Over The Top" and "Sacrifice" which was interrupted by the already mentioned, minutes long drum solo by Mikkey Dee. Unfortunately only one song presented the new album, and it was "Life's a Bitch". I know they have lots of "greatest hits" kind of songs, but "Inferno" came out just some weeks ago and I would have been much happier if they had presented more from the album, especially "In The Name of Tragedy" and "In The Black". I am also sure that almost everybody in the audience had already seen the band before. Anyway, a Motörhead show could not be a real Motörhead show without "Killed By Death", so we got it. The end of their gig neared and the usual "closing-songs", "Ace of Spades" and "Overkill" were the last tunes they played. Yes, I was complaining a bit about their setlist but anyway, it was an enjoyable show. Lots of people were coming from the front rows with bleeding noses but they did not seem to mind it - a good moshpit goes with a broken nose..? ; ) Long live Motörhead! (Katalin)

FRIDAY

W.E.T. STAGE

naked © Silkie Gerold Time seemed to stand still while Paragon played - at least for me - but after the looong suffering it was noon already and it was time for me to check out what was happening on the W.E.T. Stage. Beside giving place to some ass kicking bands, the W.E.T. Stage offered a chance for unknown bands to gain international fans. An Italian band opened the lines of gigs there, called METHEDRAS. Unfortunately not many showed up to see them but who stayed away, missed a great thrash gig. Methedras' thrash metal is in the vein of Testament and Kreator, brutalized by some Slayer influence. Does it sound like a perfect mix? For me, yes! They even played a Testament cover, "Into The Pit". No, they were not the most original band at WOA, but they definitely woke me up that day with their energetic and powerful performance. They enjoyed it and that is always a plus to see happy musicians on stage who play for the sake of music. Beside me, they got at least 10 new fans, simply because their singer threw out that many CDs into the audience. (Katalin)

Artefact © Silkie Gerold ARTEFACT promoted themselves well before their gig. On Thursday they went from tent to tent and distributed their first album "Son of Solstice" in the backstage area. I promised to check their show. This was the one and only gig I saw at the W.E.T. stage. Think none can really blame me for not seeing more shows there. Due to the fact it was so hot, this tent turned into a sauna and having such a good live band as Artefact, where the crowd went mad you were soaking wet within minutes. Damn, those French guys really know how to pull off a show. Ok, guitarist Pascal seemed to be the only one who doesn't move much, actually it looked like he was a new member in the band, who needs to concentrate on the guitar not to mix things up. If I got it right he is one of the founders, what a surprise LOL. Anyway, even if Pascal looks young, sweet and innocent /mp/\.jpgm/ the rest of the gang have a magnificent charisma. They already had a good fan base there, but surely it was growing bigger after their show. I like their mix of black, thrash, heavy and some folk. (Silkie)

PARTY STAGE

Brian & Miche © Marlies Wobben Well, what shall I say about MNEMIC?!? Actually, I don't really know the band, not even one song, but I heard they sound a bit like older Fear Factory, so I went to watch them. It was about 11 o'clock in the "morning" and it was quite warm, but nevertheless the Swedish modern thrashers did a good job! There is a bit of nu metal in their style too, but who cares, as long as it rocks?! And it did! I can't give you any names or songtitles, but I can say that the crowd - quite a lot for that "early" time - liked the performance! They reminded me a bit of In Flames, though the music is different they both have modern elements. Finally I have to admit that I did not stay until the end, because is was getting a bit too warm for me. (Paddy)

Raunchy © Nico Wobben As soon as Methedras finished their set I ran back to the Party Stage to see the second Danish band of the day. WOA visitors might have been surprised to see RAUNCHY on the billing this year again; it was quite unusual for a band to play here for the second time in a row. The only explanation I could imagine for breaking this tradition is the success of their latest album, "Confusion Bay". Last year the packed tent of the W.E.T. Stage almost emptied during the first song of their set, while this time many gathered in front of the Party Stage to have fun together with the band. There is so much energy and life in their music, and you can get hooked on their melodies so easily… their songs stick to your mind before you would recognize it. Their set was well-picked, they showed the essence of the band. They played the most catchiest, grooviest ones as well as the two heaviest ones they have got and they varied the songs from both of their albums: "Summer Of Overload", "Watch out", "Twelve Feet Tall", "Drive", "Tonight", "I Get What I See", "Crack Of Dawn", "Insane", "Join The Scene" - very good setlist. Raunchy © Nico WobbenTheir new singer, Kasper, fitted the band perfectly and communicated with the audience as if he was an old member and the audience seemed to like him (by the way, he is a very friendly and talkative guy). The one thing I can still complain about is that they still do not look like a metal band at all - I know it's only music what counts and it is especially true in their case, because they combine so many different styles in their music, categorizing them is useless - but playing-wise they seemed more professional. I know they have been playing together for a lot of years, but comparing to their show from last year, they looked calmer and more self-assured. Well, being invited to WOA twice in a row might have given them bit of a confidence. We can say they were the most vivid and lively spot at WOA and I hope to see the guys here in 2006 again! If you are not familiar with the band, check out their homepage: www.raunchy.dk to find some barrier-breaking modern music. (Katalin)

Satan © Nico Wobben I grew up in Eindhoven (Netherlands) where I had the best possible metal upbringing in the early 80's: the Dynamo Hardrock Kafee. One of the bands that constantly came over to play there, were SATAN from England. After some years, they changed the name to Blind Fury, and back, and then to Pariah, with different singers, but it was all the beginning of the end. Steve Ramsey and Graeme "Bean" English stayed in the spotlight with Skyclad, and Brian Ross sang with Blitzkrieg, but I have no idea where the others disappeared to. So I was excited to see Satan on the Wacken bill and about the thought of hearing the old songs live again! And fun it was! Original drummer Sean Taylor couldn't be there because of an injury, but the rest was there: Steve, Bean, Brian and Russ "Tornado" Tippins! The show didn't blow me away as much as Culprit did a few years ago, but it was really great to hear all the "Court In The Act" songs again. Yes, ALL of them, they played the whole album in the original order! Plus "Pull The Trigger" from the "Into The Fire" demo. I missed the 7" song "Kiss Of Death", but last song in the set was my favorite, "Oppression", from the Roxcalibur sampler! The sound wasn't too great, for most of the gig I couldn't hear the guitars well, but Brian's voice was doing very well (though I didn't think it was so good in "Break Free"). Not sure why he came on stage with a whip at some point, but in general he didn't change much over the years - as in looks, presence and voice :) Cool trip back in memory lane, just sorry I didn't run into any of the guys later on. (Marlies)

Satan © Nico Wobben Into The Fire (intro)
Trial By Fire
Blades Of Steel
No Turning Back
Broken Treaties
Break Free
Hunt You Down
The Ritual
Dark side Of Innocence
Alone In The Dock
Pull The Trigger
Oppression

ELÄKELÄISET are not really my cup of tea, but they did have an interesting show. Well, as far as I can tell as I just had a quick peek and left the show after two songs already. The band was sitting behind a huge table and they even jumped on it and had a huge party with their Humppa music and loads of drinks. The audience seemed to enjoy the metal covers in this Humppa style very much. (Silkie)

BLACK METAL STAGE

the two main stages © Katalin Sipos One of the first bands on Friday was ORPHANAGE. Musically they caught my interest as they have some musical parts reminding me of Evergrey, even if they are not really from the same metal genre. The vocals didn't convince me at all. Especially the female ones seemed to be quite weak. Leaving my opinion beside, they already had a good audience there and they surely enjoyed the show. (Silkie)

UK's doom metal band CATHEDRAL grooved Wacken. Once again I have to say the vocals didn't do much for me. Most of the time Lee Dorrian "croaked" into the microphone, his vocals sounded so harsh - it wasn't his best day. Actually those "hippies" on stage sounded more happy then dark. Seems like doom and daylight do not match... (Silkie)

Arch Enemy © Nico Wobben I didn't actually see much of ARCH ENEMY because Cora and I were already standing in front of the other stage, to secure a place in the front for the Brainstorm gig. I was hoping to at least hear it well there, but unfortunately not much of the sound reached the area where we were. I remembered hearing "I Feel Nothing" and two of my favorite Arch Enemy songs "Dead Eyes See No Future" and "Ravenous". /mp/\.jpgm/ (Marlies)

We got to Germany on Friday, the second day of Wacken, at 1am in the morning, so we didn’t get to see the bands that played on the first night. Since this was our first time at Wacken, we were very curious of course to see what it was all about. Today we walked around a bit and we saw a little bit of Orphanage and we checked out the metal market. Mayhem © Brian BeckerAt about 16:30 we went to the Black Metal Stage for MAYHEM, this was one of the few bands we really wanted to see. While we were waiting for Mayhem to take the stage, we saw 5 decapitated pig-heads “decorating” the stage. Looking at the stage we knew what they had in store for us. They played an amazing show. “View From Nihil”, “Pure Fucking Armageddon”, “Freezing Moon”, “Carnage”, “Ancient Skin”, “Whore” and “My Death” were part of their set list and also our favourite songs. Maniac did exactly what we were hoping he would do: he cut himself, let the blood drip from his hand on one of the pig-heads and threw most of the pig-heads into the crowd. The crowd went insane, we were standing right behind the moshpit so we know what we are talking about, haha! People were crowdsurfing and moshing. The heat was killing us so they hosed us down, we really needed that. Mayhem played a great show although the sound wasn’t that great, I think the fact that they were playing out in the open can be blamed for that. (Brian/Miche)

WOA 2004 © Cora Gonser I went for a little stroll around the festival area but I avoided going too near to the Party Stage where KOTIPELTO was on stage. Yeah, I don't like that guy too much. Many other people certainly do which was easy to guess by looking at the masses in front of the stage.
Not exactly masses I found in front of the Black Stage where FEINSTEIN/THE RODS were playing (yes, Black Stage). I don't know them and not that many people showed interest in them which is somewhat surprising because the short part of the show I saw wasn't all that bad. Traditional 80's style heavy rock or something like that. Not entirely my thing but nice to listen to nonetheless. Later I heard they were joined by Joey DeMaio for one song - luckily I missed that part of the show ;p (Cora)

visitors having a beer © Nico Wobben Dio was followed by a renowed thrash band. I guess it is easy to find out that after Dio's music, they literally ruined Wacken. DESTRUCTION hit the stage and kicked off with "Curse The Gods". In the following hour we did not have much opportunities left to have a rest! This time technic was on their side and they had a flawless show. One our of bombastic European thrash metal. "Mad Butcher" came on second place, and "Nailed To The Cross" followed. Schmier and Mike were headbanging and running up and down on the stage, taking over every square-centimeter of it. Dio's show was spectacular due to the light technics, Destruction used rather pyrotechnic, making the energetic thrash music more sparkling. "The Antichrist", "Eternal Ban", "The Ravenous Beast", "Life Without Sense" were in main role till their "hit", "The Butcher Strikes Back" arrived. We could enjoy more pyrotechnic during "Metal Discharge" - quite fitting to the title of the song. They seemed to enjoy the show as much as their army in front of the stage. Schmier said thank you to all their fans who came to see them from every corner of the world and dedicated "Thrash Till Death" to them. The last songs were "Desecrators Of The New Age", "Bestial Invasion", "Total Desaster". During "Total Desaster" they were joined by some guests. Namely Sabina Classen (Holy Moses) who headbanged a lot, Abbath (from Immortal) who was rather just there to have fun, and Peter Tägtgren (Hypocrisy) on guitar. They played only for an hour long set but it was more than enough to make the other shows before them forgettable. Thrash till Death!!! (Katalin)

Amon Amarth © Silkie Gerold AMON AMARTH certainly fell victim to my tiredness. Their show started at 2am and I felt so damn sleepy I was tempted to completely cancel watching them. But my sense of duty made me go to the Black Stage in time and since Wacken somehow never seems to sleep (at least during this festival) there were a lot of other people waiting to see the Vikings from Sweden. I clearly remember their appearance at WOA 2002 and maybe it was just me but they didn't seem to have the same energy level as two years ago. Frontviking Johan entered the stage raising a drinking horn and I don't know how often he growled a deep "Proooost" into the night :) The gig surprisingly started off with "Victorious March" which I more or less recall as the final song of an Amon Amarth show. With a playing time of merely an hour the set included a nice mix of highlights of the band's carreer so far and the guys even introduced a song ("Pursuit Of Vikings") from the upcoming new album "Fate Of Norns". Oh my, do they never get tired of that Viking theme? Don't get me wrong, I really like these guys but they are so limiting themselves. I'm also afraid that a lot of their songs often sound pretty much the same to me - so if you liked the previous efforts of Amon Amarth, you'll definitely like the new album too! This can be viewed as quality as well, right? :) Paddy, Markus & Cora © Katalin SiposThe show here at Wacken was also spiced up with a few pyro effects that were quite nice in the dark and some "hey-hey" chants could also be heard. "Bleed For Ancient Gods" was the last song that night and as much as I like watching Amon Amarth live - I was happy I could finally fall into my tent for some sleep. (Cora)

Victorious March
For The Stabwounds In Our Backs
Where Silent Gods Stand Guard
The Sound Of Eight Hooves
Avenger
Death In Fire
Pursuit Of Vikings
Ride For Vengeance
Masters Of War
Vs The World
Bleed For Ancient Gods

TRUE METAL STAGE

Some of us saw part of PARAGON's gig, but to be honest their style, a bombastic mix with elements of Grave Digger, Helloween and Manowar, isn't our kind of thing at all. The band played enthusiastically and was received well, because it was a home gig for the Hamburgers and there were a lot of fans present. We somehow had more interest in our beers and waters and meeting some friends. (Marlies)

Weinhold © Nico Wobben Last year Jutta Weinhold (known from her old band Zed Yago) joined Metalium on stage for a few songs and impressed me very much with her powerful voice. This year she played the "holy grounds of Wacken" again, but now with her own band WEINHOLD. I was positively surprised that the music was really metal (I was expected a more rock orientated sound), but I was negatively surprised that I didn't like her voice as much as last time. The power is phenomenal, yes, but the way of singing (waaaaay too much vibrato) got on all of our nerves really quick. What a shame, right after the festival I went to check out some soundfiles of her new CD and it's not like that at all on the album. She did several songs of that new album, "From Heaven Through The World To Hell" ("Rock Of Metal"), but also some old Zed Yago and solo stuff ("The Beacon Light"). Her announcements were as bombastic as her lyrics (phantasy stuff about sagas and warriors) and as far as I heard all in German (which is pretty dumb when you've got such an international crowd in front of you!) - but according to Cora that was a blessing to all of those who didn't understand German ;) A bit disappointed, I didn't stick around and went for drinks, so unfortunately I can't provide more titles. (Marlies)

Brainstorm © Nico Wobben BRAINSTORM possibly did their best gig ever on this day (or at least the audience had never been this crazy!) and I've seen about 25 of their shows by now! We were amazed about the strong chants for the band that already started at least 15 minutes before the show was supposed to start! And during the show we regularly looked back (we were in the front) and just couldn't see where the sea of hands and metal horns would stop. Crowdsurfers also had their fun, but it was all pretty relaxed. Because of the security in front of you, you'd know when something (someone) was coming up from behind you and the crowdsurfer would be carried to the front by many many gentle hands, into the strong arms of the security ;) And I guess that's how it's supposed to be, but usually I stay away from moshpits and crowdsurfers, because I only have bad experiences with boots in my neck and stuff like that. This was the first time I actually enjoyed it :) Anyway, on to the show! They started with green smoke from the sides and then that funny Neil Diamond intro again ("What A Beautiful Noise"), including Dieter Bernert standing behind his drumkit, whiggling his hips and clapping his hands, in which we joined. The set was exactly the same as on the last tour, so unfortunately no surprises... although this time we did get the encore we'd been asking for with our banner - "Amarillo"!!! There were some pyros at two moments in the show and the guys did an amazing job as always. Andy was in great shape as well, he hit the high notes of "The Leading" much better than during the tour ;) Of course he came down to sing to the front rows of the audience again and ran around a lot. The crowd was outrageous and when we finally got our "Amarillo" we were totally satisfied!Brainstorm © Nico Wobben Awesome! (Marlies)

Intro (Neil Diamond - "What A Beautiful Noise")
Shiva's Tears
Blind Suffering
Doorway To Survive
Hollow Hideaway
Fornever
The Leading
Highs Without Lows
Under Lights
Amarillo

Dio © Nico Wobben I hadn't seen the legend Ronnie James DIO before last year's Bang Your Head and I was totally impressed by his voice and performance then. So I was really looking forward to this show as well! It's amazing to believe that a 60+ year old guy can still be in such great shape, physically and vocally. Respect! It was great to hear a lot of the classics again, from his Black Sabbath and Rainbow days as well as his own band, Dio. Of course there are always a lot of them missing as well, but he can only do so much in one setlist, right? Although many people would've rather heard one or two more classics and less drum- and guitarsoloing. The set did include my favorite Dio song "Don't Talk To Strangers" and my favorite Black Sabbath song "Heaven And Hell" (with Ronnie in red light from below on an otherwise dark stage). So I was happy ;) He did only one song of his forthcoming album "Master Of The Moon", called "The Eyes": great song, great atmosphere! Another great song, "We Rock" closed the set, but the party wasn't over yet! Manowar's Joey De Maio came on stage and started one of his typical bullshit speaches ("What's my name..??").. but, this time the topic quickly went to mr. Ronnie James Dio and the words were pretty true! He described Dio's successful carreer and said how "Heaven And Hell" had changed his life. But more importantly, he was here to give Ronnie a special lifetime achievement prize. Ronnie was of course very honoured and pleased, and humbly said to the audience "I do this for you!". A chilling moment, that of course had to be ruined by mr. Loudmouth De Maio by wanting to have the last words and telling us to go to our tents and fuck our brains out *rolleyes*. seeking shade © Cora GonserI didn't let it ruin the memory of the wonderful gig I just saw - the true headliner of this festival!! (Marlies)

The King Of Rock'n'Roll
Stargazer
Sign Of The Southern Cross
Stand Up And Shout ??
drumsolo
Don't Talk To Strangers
The Eyes
Rainbow In The Dark
medley Man On The Silver Mountain/guitarsolo/Long Live Rock and Roll
Rock'n'Roll Children
Gates Of Babylon
Holy Diver
Heaven And Hell
We Rock

Doro © Nico Wobben As much as I always enjoy seeing and hearing Doro live, this night I had been staying up to see Warlock most of all! Nico and I saw the short reunion at her 20th Birthday show back in December, so we were excited about this Wacken show too. But first part of the show was DORO & ORCHESTRA & GUESTS, featuring a classic orchestra and guests like Blaze and Chris Caffery. To me the combination didn't work so well, I much rather just see the band itself, doing the heavy versions. I suppose it was fun for Doro and the band as it was something really different for a change, playing with acoustic instruments and all the classical musicians backing them up. The set started with the Iron Maiden song "Fear Of The Dark", here a duet with Blaze. Blaze also did "The Trooper" and "Man On The Edge" by himself and during "Für Immer" Savatage-guitarist Chris Caffery joined Doro on stage. The decor and lightshow were phenomenal and there were big fire-columns during "Burn The Fire". She was supposed to sing "Breaking The Law" with Udo Dirkschneider, but he didn't make it, unfortunately. After the driven "Fight" song "Always Live To Win" and the finale "We Are All" (with Blaze and Chris back on stage), it was time for a short break/changeover and then finally WARLOCK came on stage! In the "True As Steel" line-up, because last year, original guitarist Rudy Graf was nowhere to be found. They played songs from the five Warlock albums, plus the B-side of the "You Hurt My Soul" single, "Evil". Pretty cool to see them together on a stage again, but it didn't blow us away like the reunion on her birthday party in December did. Maybe it was our fatigue, or the huge stage, or Frank Rittel being totally static on stage (very unlike his performance in December!). Nevertheless it was fun, but nothing outrageous. It made me realize it's the Metal Queen herself who makes the show, no matter who's backing her up. (Marlies)

Doro © Nico Wobben Doro & Friends & Orchestra:
Fear Of The Dark
I Rule The Ruins
Metal Tango
The Trooper
Man On The Edge
Für Immer
Let Love Rain On Me
Burn The Fire
Breaking The Law
Always Live To Win
We Are All

Warlock:
Out Of Control
Fight For Rock
Metal Racer
Midnite In China
Evil
Burning The Witches
True As Steel
Hellbound

SATURDAY

PARTY STAGE

Mystic Prophecy © Nico Wobben If you like melodic, but powerful metal (the non-happy kind!), then you must check out MYSTIC PROPHECY, esp. live! The band around guitar-hero Gus G. is a treat, I tell ya. Singer and frontman Lia (short for Roberto Dimitri Liapakis) was real good, this day at Wacken, actually the whole band was. Gus, bassist Martin Albrecht and tour-guitarist Markus Pohl (Symphorce) loved to pose and were constantly seeking contact with the fans. Very enthusiastic and tight live band! They played a.o. "The Land Of The Dead", "Eternal Flame", "Burning Bridges" from the upcoming album "Never-Ending" (to be released in October) and of course the band anthem "Mystic Prophecy". (Marlies)

EKTOMORF's style (Soulfly!) is not really my thing, but I'm surprised to see that the guys from Hungary get a pretty big crowd in front of their stage! And enthusiastic too, lots of hands in the air, and when *n a m e   s i n g e r* told them to jump, they jumped high! Created a neat little earthquake right there, I'm sure ;) We saw it from afar and went to check it out for a bit. I don't have any songtitles for you and we didn't stay long, but I was positively surprised by the energy coming from that stage. (Marlies)

After Forever © Nico Wobben I think this was the first time for AFTER FOREVER to play at the Wacken festival. Female leadsinger Floor Jansen has a fascinating charisma and a wonderful voice. The set was a good mix of old and new songs, i.e. "My Pledge Of Allegiance #1" of the "Decipher" album, "Glorifying Means" of the mini album "Exordium", "Two Sides" of the latest album "Invisible Circles", "Follow In The Cry" of the "Prison Of Desire" album . Of course the Iron Maiden cover "The Evil That Men Do" couldn't be left out. Great show, only weak point were the male clear vocals that could have been stronger...(Silkie)

Silkie & Nico having a meat stick © Cora Gonser One of the best performances I saw was THUNDERSTONE. The Finnish melodic power metallers kicked some serious ass!! They opened up with the "The Burning" album's first single "Until We Touch The Burning Sun", and one could see that the band had loads of fun!! The crowd really enjoyes the powerful music, and not only vocalist Pasi Rantanen did a great job. The highlight of the set was "Will To Power", a longer song, but also the headbangers, like "Spire", "Break The Emotion" , "Let The Demons Free" or "Me, My Enemy", were all great! The midtempo-song "Forth Into The Black" also was very cool, and also the water-showers from the stage kept the audience "friendly". Honestly, I don't know what else to say, but the band was great!! (Paddy)

BLACK METAL STAGE

Bal-Sagoth © Nico Wobben When singer Byron joined the stage with a bomber jacket in the heat of midday I thought this guy is totally nuts... His announcements between the several songs were far too long, if he had shorten them a bit (more), BAL-SAGOTH could have played at least one more song. Not sure if the new drummer was the reason for less songs. However Bal-Sagoth were a totally sound chaos live: nothing seemed to work like it does on their albums and I'm not too sure who we should blame here. Two songs I remember were "Atlantis Ascentdant" and the second part of the triology "Hyperborean Empire". Well, I had a huge expectation here and got very disapointed. Out of all bands I have seen at Wacken, this show was the worst. (Silkie)

Unleashed © Nico Wobben I came to see UNLEASHED when they were playing the second or even third song of their set already, I believe it was "Legal Rapes". Next song was "The Immortals" and I started to find them kinda boring although for the next track frontman Johnny said "I want you all to go berserk" ;) The band has been around for a long time and just as Wacken was celebrating its 15th anniversary Unleashed celebrated their participation in the world of Swedish death metal with "Death Metal Victory" during which the gathered fans were called to sing along. Worked pretty well. They then played a Death cover, "Evil Dead" which was dedicated to the "icons of death metal that passed away", namely recently deceased Quorthon and of course Chuck Schuldiner. I must say that I don't know Unleashed's newer material at all (that translates to anything released after 1993....) so I was almost excited to hear them play "Execute Them All" next. Other songs they played were "Hell Is Unleashed", a new track called "Winterland" from the upcoming new album "Sworn Allegiance", "Into Glory Ride" as well as "Before The Creation Of Time" which according to Johnny they had never played in Germany before. (Cora)

Cannibal Corpse © Nico Wobben Next up on the Black Metal Stage, our favourite band of Wacken Open Air 2004: CANNIBAL CORPSE! Actually we’ve seen them live already at the No Mercy festival this year in Tilburg, but this is the first time we got to see their new guitarist, Jeremy Turner, play live. We weren't standing front row this time, more like in the third or fourth row. We were waiting in agony for this moment, due to the heat. When they started playing everyone who was standing at the True Metal Stage ran over to the Black Metal Stage and the moshpit immediately began. It was biggest and most brutal pit of this festival. They couldn’t play the songs from their first three albums; "Eaten Back To Life", "Butchered At Birth" and "Tomb Of The Mutilated" because they are banned in Germany which is fucking bullshit! And in Corpsegrinder’s own words: Fuck Censorship!! For the songs see the setlist, "Fucked With a Knife" was of course dedicated to all the women. This was in our opinion one of the best performances all day.
I (Miche) got to meet all the guys from Cannibal Corpse backstage. I also got to take a picture with George, Alex and Pat. It was awesome! After taking pictures with them, me, George and two other guys went to see a bit of Saxon together. Alex came to meet us later. They made jokes and stuff so they really made me feel welcome!! After that we went backstage again and we talked for a while. They were amazed and impressed that I was from Aruba and they kept asking me all about it. I talked to Paul too; he's a very nice man. I always thought he was a smartass or so, hahaha, 'cause he reminds me a bit of Howard Stern. After that George and I went to see half a song of Satyricon, Alex also came along but he went to watch the show from backstage. Actually it was kinda late and Paul did warn us about the time because everybody was supposed to be at the bus at 1:00 am to go catch the plane back home, so at 1:15 we rushed to their busses, got a hug from Paul, Alex and George and said goodbye. I really had fun with those guys, Cannibal Corpse © Nico Wobbenespecially after getting to know that they are "normal" people who don't let fame get to their heads! (Brian/Miche)

Gallery Of Suicide
Decency Defied
The Wretched Spawn
Pit Of Zombies
They Deserve To Die
Staring Through The Eyes Of The Dead
Unleashing The Bloodthirsty
Pounded Into Dust
Stripped Raped And Strangled
Fucked With a Knife
Devoured By Vermin

HYPOCRISY came and destroyed, hehe...Actually Peter Tägtgren was worried the audience didn't drink enough water in this heat, yeah you read correctly, we are talking water, not beer LOL crowd © Nico WobbenAnd he also kept telling everyone how amazed he was to see such a big crowd, he would never exchange Wacken for 2000 women in bed. I can't recall the whole setlist as I actually missed the first songs. I joined the audience when Peter just did the anouncement for the next song and Hypocrisy started to play "Adjusting The Sun" followed by "Eraser" from the new album "The Arrival". Other songs they played were "Turn The Page", "Inferior Devoties", "The Final Chapter", "God Is A Lie" and "Fire In The Sky", "Deathrow (No Regrets)" and "Roswell 47". I think they played another song but unfortunately I can not recall the last song as I forgot to write it down. Once again I was amazed what a good show they did. Also I must say, in the year of "evil" haircuts (don't take me too serious ;)), it's fascinating to watch Peter and esp. Mikael and Andreas headbanging. And needless to tell you that Horgh's drumming ruled.... /mp/\.jpgm/ (Silkie)

Satyricon © Silkie Gerold After Cannibal Corpse we walked around a bit again and saw a bit of the other bands. At 22:00 sharp I went to the Black Metal Stage to wait for SATYRICON but since I was two hours too early, I got to see the whole set of Saxon too. When the hour finally came, a huge crowd gathered at the Black Metal Stage. When Saxon finished their set, their crowd went to the Black Metal Stage too. Satyricon opened with "Walk The Path Of Sorrow". The crowd was pretty wild, people were slamming and crowd surfing. Their show was packed with fire works and flames. After their set, it was time for them to do a DARKTHRONE set with Nocturno Culto handling the vocals and Satyr on the guitar. The crowd enjoyed every minute of it. Nocturno Culto dedicated his performance to Thomas "Quorthon" Forsberg, frontman of the legendary band Bathory who passed away in June 2004. For their encore they performed Satyricon’s "Mother North" with Nocturno Culto on the guitar. I read somewhere that there were 43.000 fans present. All in all the fans enjoyed the show and afterwards had the chance of getting the autograph of Satyr, Frost and Nocturno Culto. (Brian/Miche)

Satyricon:
'refreshment police' © Silkie Gerold Walk The Path Of Sorrow
The Night Of The Triumphator
Angstridden
Filthgrinder
Fuel For Hatred
Forhekset
Repined Bastard Nation
Hvite Krists Død

Darkthrone:
Kaatharian Life Code
The Hordes Of Nebulah
Transilvanian Hunger
Under A Funeral Moon
Mother North

TRUE METAL STAGE

Death Angel © Nico Wobben For many metalheads in Wacken it was the first time to see the resurrected Bay Area legends DEATH ANGEL. I could only look around and grin at what I knew would come. Even though the sound wasn't very great, the reactions to a band that so clearly gave 200% on stage were overwhelming. And that's exactly what they deserved! Once again they used the whole stage, were in touch with the crowd all the time, played tight in the meantime and singer Mark Osegueda moved his sexy body and long dreadlocks like no other, which makes him, in addition to his impressive and expressive voice, a very unique and photogenic frontman. Again the set was a mix of old classics our photographer Nico © Marlies Wobbenand new, also killer, material. And with again that mighty finale, "Kill As One"!

Seemingly Endless Time
Thrown To The Wolves
Voracious Souls
Thicker Than Blood
Bored
Famine
Kill As One

Anthrax © Nico Wobben The second band we saw was on the last day of Wacken 2004. None other than the legendary act ANTHRAX. They played on the True Metal Stage, time 14:35. We were actually waiting for Cannibal Corpse at the Black Metal Stage. We saw the whole show on the big screen. This is the first time we saw them live. The place was packed; they drew a pretty big crowd. Their set list consisted of old songs and also a couple of new ones. They are a great live band; we really liked the old songs. Their performance was energy packed! These guys knew how to get the crowd going, especially when they played the old stuff. The quality of their sound was awesome, we were standing at the Black Metal Stage and to us it sounded very clear. Here are a couple of songs that Anthrax played at Wacken: "Room For One More", "Indians", "Only", "N.F.L.", "Antisocial", "Death Rider", "Be All, End All", "Caught In A Mosh" and "Safe Home". My favourite Anthrax song was "Indians", I bet I'm not the only one who thinks that. (Brian/Miche)

Nevermore © Nico Wobben NEVERMORE was one of the few bands I really wanted to see and I was looking forward to their show which started off with "Seven Tongues Of God". In the middle of the set Warrel announced a song saying that "it starts with an 'H' - "Hammer Smashed Face""..... I don't know - had he just seen Cannibal Corpse on the Black Metal Stage? ;) Anyway, it was of course the "Heart Collector" they were about to play and the announcement of that song alone gave me goosebumps. Too bad it wasn't as intense as it usually is in a club, especially with the wind carrying away a lot of the fans' chants. Speaking of wind carrying away things: same went for the not-all-too-great sound coming from stage I think. Not so nice. Before Nevermore started playing "I, Voyager" Warrel told us that thanks to MTV they will have to censor the video clip for that song because it was too violent and contained too much blood. Well, I haven't seen it and I'm neither fan of violence nor blood... but MTV sucks. Then Warrel announced the next song by saying "Over the wall.." and Marlies and I were looking at each other thinking they'd cover Testament, maybe due to guitarist Steve Smyth one of the many crowdsufers during Nevermore © Marlies Wobbenhaving just joined the band, but then Warrel continued saying "....of the River Dragon" ;) (Cora)

The Seven Tongues Of God
This Sacrament
Enemies Of Reality
Beyond Within
The Heart Collector
Next In Line
Never Purify
Sound Of Silence
I, Voyager
The River Dragon Has Come

Three years ago, HELLOWEEN were in Wacken, and they absolutely did not check out!! The whole band seemed bored, but I was gonna give them another chance. Nevertheless, I expected quite a lot, due to the actual album "Rabbit Don't Come Easy", but the German power metallers didn't even play a single song from that record. Starting off with "Starlight", a song from the very first record, the Weenies played "Keeper Of The Seven Keys" (!!!) and some other old stuff. Marlies & Silkie having a liter of water each © Cora GonserBut frankly, who needs that boring "left side vs. right side" game during "Power"??? I don't, and hopefully Andi Deris understands that someday . "Eagle Fly Free", "The Chance" and "Dr. Stein" were played excellently, though Deris' voice never can come close to Kiske nor Hansen, but they played a very good set, in the end I must say, I was surprised indeed! Michael Weikath, the lead guitar player, played some great stuff together with Sascha Gerster (ex-Freedom Call), as if they played together for years; although Gerster is in the band only since last year!! But nevertheless, Weiki is somehow strange . The things he says, I guess he just is that way . Or was it just acting for the new DVD they announced?? I don't think so ;)
They were announced with a special guest, and that was Kai Hansen (Gamma Ray)!!! Not only for me that was a great moment seeing them all together on the stage, and they played "Future World" and "How Many Tears". Unfortunately, Kai only did some backing vocals, and Deris never let him sing "alone". That would have been even better!! (Paddy)

Saxon © Silkie Gerold What can I say about SAXON??? I think everybody knows them and their live qualities, they are one of the best live bands I have seen in my life!!! Although they are in the business since something in the late seventies, they live rock'n'roll !! They opened up with "Heavy Metal Thunder" and played all the classic songs one could expect. "20.000 Feet", "Strong Arm Of The Law", "Backs To The Wall", "Motorcycle Man", "Wheels Of Steel", "Princess Of The Night", "Dogs Of War", and those are only the songs that come to my mind right now. "Rock Is Our Life" was I think the only song from the "Killing Ground" album, and Biff said, they wrote it about Wacken 2001 when they were headliner the last time. "747 Strangers In The Night" was played together with former Saxon drummer Nigel Glockler. Also, Biff wondered that nobody wanted to hear "Crusader", and when he announced, that they wouldn't play it, the crowd did absolutely NOT agree! So later on, they - of course - played "Crusader", with ex-Stratovarius drummer Jörg Michael, who will be a full member in the future. During the other songs, Fritz Randow played the drums. "Dallas 1PM", frequently asked by the audience, was one of the last songs. The encore was "Denim And Leather", which was performed together with Savatage's Chris Caffery on 3rd guitar and Destruction's Schmier on 2nd bass-guitar, that was really a night and a gig to remember!!! (Paddy)

festivalarea © Cora Gonser In the middle of the night, after a few days of more or less hard festival activity, came the point where the festival finally was about to find its end. Last band to play this year was the fun band JBO. As always a guarantee for a good mood and certainly not the worst choice as final band. On the other side there are a lot of international visitors that probably simply aren't interested in them too much because they don't understand German. Anyway, JBO once again managed to make the crowd sing along although you could see that one or the other was fighting against the call of their sleepingbags ;) It was also funny to look at said international visitors that were wondering what crap the German metalheads were singing along to the known melodies. In the end, a lot of time was wasted for dressing up, because for "Roots Bloody Roots" a Pavarotti came on stage - but that also increased the fun factor. Somehow everybody was a little disappointed when sharp 3 am everything was over but also obviously relieved to continue cheaper drinking on the campground or simply go to sleep. One could see in a lot of satisfied, exhausted faces that were probably happy they got to hear a lot of older JBO songs this time. (Sjard)

BBQ at the MP camp © Cora Gonser This was the 15th edition of Wacken Open Air. Lots of great bands, lots of interesting people and lots of fun. (To be exact: "33.000 visitors, 2.000 free - tickets for the citizens of Wacken, 6.000 guests, press-people and artists and also 3.000 helping hands joined the festival".) The heat was working against us but beer helped to survive.. ;) I travelled 22 hours to get there and Sunday morning I was looking forward a 22-hour long journey again to make my way home but I did not mind it for a second. WOA is still the best metal festival in Europe and in the whole world too. Splendid line-up year after year - pleasing fans of every style, professional organization - they really try to do everything for our comfort and pleasure, international friendships and Metal at every corner of the area. Most of us are still going there to see bands playing but I know quite a few people who never make it to the festival site. They buy their tickets, they put up their tents and they are just having fun on the campsite, listening to music from the distance. WOA is more than just a festival, it is a happening of the metalheadz from all over the world. Let me send my greetings here and now to Colleen, Australia's toughest metalchick who came here, all way long, on her own. Girlpower! :)

couch on top of a van on the campsite © Katalin Sipos WOA is our Mecca and we do the pilgrimage every year to worship our addiction to Metal. The organizors did an incredible job again, here are the facts: "It needed a lot of man-power and logistic work, for creating this festival: During two weeks 1.000 Workers builded a festival site. 70 members from the production - team, 500 securitys, 200 stewards, 330 paramedics, 3 emergency doctors and 150 officers from the police took effort. We are very happy, that the 4 fire brigades didn´t have to do a job. The technology shifted 85 km cables, in 35 containers altogether 40 voice grade channels have been put and 20 computers-workplaces had to be furnished. The steelworkers made 4 stages from 100 t steel, 70 generators produced the same electricity which is needed for a small town In this year 1500 mobil toilets and 480 water-rinsed toilets were placed. 45,000 roles of toilet paper were needed. 360 showers, 50 washbasins and free entrance in the Wacken swimming pool provided for sufficient body hygiene. The result: 120.000 m3 waste water had to be disposed. In two catering areas 7,000 crew meals were eaten. 64 band on stage, that means: 600 hotel reservations and 300 shuttle travels with altogether 8 shuttle vehicles. But the W:O:A vehicle park still had to offer some more. 5 nightliners, 3 fork-lift trucks, 4 wheeled loaders; 2 jeeps, 2 pick-ups, 1 touring bus, 2 tractors, 3 trucks, 2 recovery vehicles, 2 General German Automobile Association vehicles and 8 toilet suction cars have been in use 24 hours. And not least we picked up garbage in two days, which filled 40 trucks. Nearly 1.800 times first aid. We are very happy, that nobody got hurt. Only people who had problems with the sun or insects needed first aid. Also the officers from the police talked about the safest and most peaceful festival in the history of wacken open air. But the most important thing is the music. 64 bands on 6 stages turned W:O:A 2004 to a musical highlight."

Katalin having a rest © Katalin Sipos For the first time in WOA history, the festival was broadcasted via internet. Even those who could not make it to the small village in Northern Germany could follow the concerts and could take part in the fun we had there. Besides the great performances this festival became a bit more special for me. During the Böhse Onkelz gig I met a friend I had not seen for two years. You can imagine, Bobo was just as surprised as I was when I recognized him. Of corpse we celebrated it the next day ;)

No bands are confirmed for WOA 2005 at the moment but that does not matter. Same place, same time, next year, rain or shine, see you in Wacken! (Katalin)

submitted by Cora 12.09.2004

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