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Ten Years In Hell – COPENHELL 2019 part 2

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Day number three was opened by Matt Heafy and Trivium on the main stage, and the chaos around it. The inflow of crowd surfers during their show was the highest until that moment of Copenhell, and Trivium delivered a high-quality performance as they always do. Matt is an amazing performer, he has this ease in getting connection with the audience, so even audience members not familiar with Trivium were able to enjoy the performance.

After a faster introduction of the day, it was time for something softer on the Hades stage, British djent group Tesseract. With Daniel Tompkins on vocals, Tesseract played a totally different setlist than during their latest headline tour— which was mostly built around their last record ‘Sober.’ Tesseract’s performance started with a big part of ‘Concealing Fate’ and finished with ‘Juno’. The highlight of the performance was Daniel Tompkins’ first attempt to jump into the crowd, which ended up with an unplugged wireless microphone, after which Danny quickly returned to stage laughing on his failed attempt.

The next show on the Helviti stage? was the only Danish show performance on the main stage at Copenhell 2019: hard rock band Pretty Maids. The band still has many fans not only in Danmark, which was clearly visible assessing the number of fans gathered in front of the stage. Pretty Maids did not disappoint, they entertained the audience with all of their hits including ‘We Came to Rock’, ‘Future World’ and ‘Love Games’. Maybe the guys are getting older, but they have proved they still got rock in their blood.

Bæst, another Danish band, much heavier than Pretty Maids, was for me one of most anticipated performances of Friday—mostly because I have had bad luck with missing their shows. The performance was just simply crazy. Vocalist Simon Olsen behaves as though he just finished drinking a six pack of redbull, and transmits his energy into the crowd. This kept security guys busy, as the army of crowd surfers started to arrive in the pit at front of the stage. I was not disappointed with my first meeting the Bæst and I will be sure to catch their next show.

Alien Weaponry was something exotic I just had to see. From New Zealand, the band started the show with haka dance and a lot of reference to Maori culture, including part of the lyrics singing in Maori language. The young guys’ performance was an interesting experience, and it was obvious that the band members were enjoying the show as much as the fans.

One of the first headliners of Friday was Lamb of God. Band Led by Randy Blythe, the band nailed this, totally delivering one of the best performances of the day. ‘Uncle’ Randy was executing his usual agenda—jumping, kicking, and screaming. The stage was still soaked in the sun, which took out a bit out of this dark power that usually accompanies this type of performance, but Randy and company couldn’t care less. They started with ‘Omerta,’ and total craziness in the audience began when Blythe introduced the next song, ‘Walk With Me in Hell.’ The circle pit was the biggest one of Copenhell 2019. I think for many metalheads there, the Lamb of God show was the highlight of the day. Before leaving the stage, Lamb of God vocalist invited all the fans to join the show of his friends from Clutch on the stage located right from the Helviti.

Clutch was the next in the schedule and I can’t lie about it—it was my number two of the entire Copenhell 2019 following Tool. Neil Fallon and company started with ‘Ghoul Wrangler’ with a lot of fuzz and pantomimic expression of crazy lyrics done by Neil, this was the best party you could receive. Quickly after that, Clutch played another great track: ‘Noble Savage.’ The biggest surprise was delivered in the final stage of the set, where the band introduced a special guest—none other than Randy Blythe of Lamb of God. The audience went crazy seeing their idol again. This time without extensive jumping, Randy performed one of the oldest Clutch songs presented this evening ‘Passive Restrain’. The whole show closed with ‘Gimme the Keys,’ and smiling fans started to move back to the main stage for the main course of the day.

Slipknot, the crazy, masked metal gang gathered the biggest crowd of the entire festival. It looked like everyone who was on Copenhell premises showed up to see this crazy band. First, we could only see the stage hidden by a huge banner with the bands logo, and clouds of smoke coming from behind. Then we could hear the ‘(515)’ from the tape, which smoothly transitioned to first notes of ‘People=Shit,’ and the banner sharply pulled up after no more than 30 seconds of the song. This has started a massive pogo dance— all of the people started to jump, cheer, and scream together with Corey Taylor. The hits were coming one after one, as Slipknot has a good portfolio of great festival songs. ‘Before I Forget,’ ‘Psychosocial’ or ‘Duality’ were combined with the material from Slipknot’s upcoming album. The stage set-up was quite simple for Slipknot, but with their show standards, there were still a lot of things happening— fire, running, crazy percussion sets, it was all there. The evening was closed with ‘Spit It Out’ and ‘Surfacing’ and all the fans could go home. Corey Taylor delivered a great show as always, and all the props to Copenhell for booking Slipknot as one of the headliners.

Final day of the festival was set as a total mixture of styles and not much time to rest. The schedule for the final day was perfectly planned and the shows were starting after one another on two big stages.

The day started with a bit of folk metal played by Eluveitie. This mixture of classic instruments—celtic harp, violin, hurdy-gurdy, and all kind of pipes and whistles— sparked with metal tones spread out throughout the audience, delivering positive vibes for the start of the day. In their brief set, Eluveitie delivered a few hit songs including amazing ‘The Call of the Mountains’ or ‘Worship’ which is another connection to Randy Blythe, who added vocals to the album version of the song. This year Randy was all around the Copenhell.

A slight change of style occurred on the main stage with the performance of funk metal veterans from Living Colour, followed by another style change with legendary Glenn Hughes performing classic Deep Purple hits from when he played with MK3 and MK4.

After this short break from metal sounds, Amon Amarth took us back to the world of heavy sounds. These crazy Swedish Vikings initiated the journey through the cold seas with ‘The Pursuit of Vikings,’ with most of the audience chanting with bands vocalist ‘Oden! Guide our ships.’ Next song, ‘Deceiver of the Gods’ featured first fire spectacle of the day, flames were thrown in the air in the rhythm of the song. ‘Guardians of Asgaard’ featured guest performance of LG Petrov from Entombed. The Viking show was closed with ‘Raise Your Horns’ and ‘Twilight of the Thunder God’.

Next performance was a special event prepared by Copenhell called ‘Ten Years In Hell’ to celebrate 10th edition of Copenhell. Musicians from most popular Danish bands, including members of Bæst, Pretty Maids and Hank Shermann from Mercyful Fate, performed hard rock and metal standards of AC DC, Motorhead or Death. The show was quite interesting, and transitioned like a massive karaoke while the whole audience was singing along.

Rob Zombie was the last performer I saw on the main stage (I have decided to skip Scorpions since I saw them twice on the same tour already). Rob was supported by two ex-Marilyn Manson musicians: marvelous guitarist John 5, and drummer Ginger Fish. Covered under his hair and huge hat, Rob Zombie looked like a character from a post-apocalyptic movie. He kicked and danced while delivering his best hits, including ‘American Witch,’ ‘Living Dead Girl,’ ‘More Human Than Human,’ and ‘Dragula’. Poor Rob had the sun shining directly in his eyes for a major part of the set, and asked the crowd several times, ‘Denmark, does this sun never set?’ The show was closed with two cover songs: ‘Enter The Sandman’ and ‘Schools Out’. The whole show was much better than the performance delivered at Copenhell a few years ago, so it was strong return from Mr. Rob.

The last show for me on this year’s Copenhell was Dimmu Borgir, which completed the total mixture of styles on the final day of the festival. The show featured a nice light showcase, lighting up the dark space in front of the stage—a nice closure of Copenhell for me.

Copenhell 2019 delivered a huge mixture and variety of styles. Maybe it was not as extreme as last year— where we even got some classic music!— but still, the organization of the festival proved that they don’t want to close themselves in the metal festival frame, and are aspiring to expand into other hard music genres. In my opinion, that’s a very good move, and this year everyone was able to pick something for themselves. . Copenhell guys: good job and see you next year!

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Editor: Stephanie Regan

Coverage: Kasper Pasinski

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