After a few hours of sleep, we were ready to tackle day II at Hellfest, after getting ready and cleaning some space on our memory cards we were ready to start the day. We arrived just in time to catch Swedish death metal act Entrails.
Entrails was one of the bands I was looking forward to seeing most. During the first part of their set, I was taking photos. After, I stayed to watch the rest of the set. Since they were the first band of the day, I had just gotten to the festival and my hair was still wet from my shower. I was head banging so much during their set it dried my hair! But that’s what happens when you see real Swedish death metal live. Overall, I seriously wish this band would make it to the states so I can see them again.
Walking around the Hellfest grounds we got the chance to catch a little bit of Dark Fortress at the Temple, This German extreme metal band delivered a great show with a significant number fans at the front of the rail. After Dark Fortress, we catch up with US pristine death metal ambassadors Cattle Decapitation.
Cattle Decapitation is one of my favorite modern-day death metal bands. It doesn’t matter how many times I see them live, hearing Travis Ryan’s piercing vocals in-person never gets old! It was my first time photographing them, and being one of the most expressive bands live I got a lot of fun shots of them! But I definitely stayed after their set to see them. This band is so good live I could see them every day if I could. But seeing them at Hellfest was by far the best I’ve ever seen them!
I only had time to watch and photograph one song from Agoraphobic Nosebleed because we had interviews scheduled . But from what I saw they were amazing! They had so much energy in their set. Each member is releasing their own individual EP, and I recently bought the one vocalist Kat Katz did titled Arc, and I really like it. I just hope they come to Florida soon so I can see a full set!
Now it was time for some folk metal at the Temple by Dutch folk metal act Heidevolk, we had seen Heidevolk in the US a couple of times as they were part of Paganfest America 2013 and most recently as they toured the US with Arkona last year. Of course, they show was not only packed but fun as hell. With a quick mixed of songs from their latest album Velua (2014) and classics from their early repertory these Dutch folk metal heroes really delivered an amazing show at Hellfest 2016.
After Heidevolk we went back to the press area for the Within Temptation press conference where we got the chance to get some answers from Sharon Den Adel about their so rumored (they posted a clue on Facebook a couple of days before Hellfest) live duet with Tarja for the song ‘Paradise (What About Us?)’ out of the band’s latest album Hydra. A song that many fans of Within Temptation wanted to see live. Sharon also responded to about the idea of her being part of the show that will celebrate Delain’s 10th-year-anniversary release of their first album Lucidity (in which Sharon was involved on a couple of tracks), happening this December in Amsterdam. You can watch the full press conference below.
Within Temptation Hellfest press conference
Entombed AD was absolutely amazing! I was really looking forward to seeing them play. I saw them open for Amon Amarth and was curious to see them play a large festival. Not surprisingly, they were even better playing for a huge audience in Europe! Like a lot of the other bands I mentioned, I photographed them for the first song and watched the rest of their set. Being from Tampa I’m spoiled with Tampa death metal, but I rarely get the Swedish death metal fix. Today seemed to be the day that happened and having legends such as Entombed AD perform topped it.
After a couple of hours of interviews (coming soon), we rushed out to check out the Within Temptation show at the main stage. Of course they didn’t disappointed at all with a very mixed set list that included songs like: Our Solemn Hour, In the Middle of the Night, Faster, And We Run, The Heart of Everything, Stand My Ground, Paradise (What About Us?) with Tarja Turunen, Caged, The Howling, What Have You Done, and Mother Earth. I think Within Temptation couldn’t choose a best place to play Paradise (What About Us?) with Tarja like Hellfest, the response of the public was beyond words, and it made their whole set unique as this was the first time they played the song with Tarja live.
Terrorizer are my Tampa homies! It was my first time in Europe and I still saw friends from home! After some hanging out with guitarist Lee Harrison and vocalist/bassist Sam Molina, they finally went on. Terrorizer is my favorite grind band, and seeing them perform in front of so many people was amazing. Let’s just say the first time I saw Terrorizer they were performing in someone’s backyard. Of course I got pictures of them, but of course I stayed after to support them. And it was by far the best I ever saw them! Sorry Tampa, your amazing energy can’t top the energy from the largest European metal festival
After Terrorizer the turn was for the Irish lords of extreme pagan metal, Primordial which delivered an astonishing set at the Temple to say the less, under the command of vocalist AA Nemtheanga (Alan Averill), once again as they did a few years ago at ProgPower USA 2012, they put up an amazing live show. Primordial is a strange but unique band as their music lingers in the borders between pagan and black metal. Let’s say that if you come up with the chance to see Primordial, that will be a golden opportunity for you to be blown away by their powerful yet dark set.
One of the bands I was looking forward to seeing was Twisted Sister. Yes, I realize they stop playing shows for ten years and then randomly start back up again. But seriously, who knows if this will really be the last time. Of course, it was better than I expected. My only complaint is I don’t remember them playing “We’re Not Gonna Take It” (I was eating during the first part of their set so maybe they played it then). But to make it up they covered “Born to Raise Hell” with Motorhead‘s guitarist Phil Campbell himself! So, TAKE IT OR LEAVE IT! I took it all in.
So, I had to watch Korn. What got me into metal was the nu-metal movement. I figured I would only stay for a song or two. But I ended up staying for the first half of their set! They played old classics such as “Falling Away from Me” “Here to Stay” and “Blind.” While it was awesome watching vocalist Jonathan Davis still kick ass, drummer Ray Luzier topped the performance. It’s rare you see a drummer so enthusiastic! But it came to the point where I had to watch Dark Funeral.
I remember when I saw Dark Funeral in 2012 when they toured with Grave, and of course I wasn’t let pass the opportunity to see them with their new vocalist Heljarmadr and performing songs from their recently released album Where Shadows Forever Reign, Dark Funeral live is just the kind of black metal show you need after a full day of metal, they squeezed the very last drop of energy from the crowd in front of them. Definitely, it was a great way to end such glorious day.
After Dark Funeral we walked home tired but a huge smile after a great day watching such amazing bands, even though we knew the next day was our last day in Hell we knew we were ready for another great day at Hellfest 2016.
Day III report is coming up next…