Wacken Open Air 2010 concert review
2010-08-05 - 2010-08-07
ALICE COOPER - MÖTLEY CRÜE - LIZZY BORDEN - CRUCIFIED BARBARA - W.A.S.P. AND MANY OTHERS
Alice Cooper - True Metal Stage - Thursday
Due to some timing issues, we arrived at the Alice Cooper gig well within the set, so we missed out on all but four songs. However, these four definitely sounded perfect. Mr. Cooper delivered "Feed My Frankenstein", "Under My Wheels", "Elected" and "School's Out" with massive joy, dedication and showmanship. A great starter for a big-ass festival.
Other gigs worth mentioning at this day: Mötley Crüe - Iron Maiden
Mötley Crüe - Black Stage - Thursday
Once the sun set, people started flooding the huge festival grounds at Wacken. My last time there was 2005, and the few years between then and 2010 did the festival good. Helicopter photos are available online, just to show you how immense the festival and camping is. Did I mention that the festival grounds were almost completely full at certain times?
At the Black Stage, Mötley Crüe was gearing up to deliver their early-night set. Due to the wind, we got to see a little more of the set-up than expected (huge black curtains were hung in front of the stage, unfortunately they were blown down after just a few minutes).
Kicking off with about the same set as the Lokerse Feesten a few days before, I immediately noticed that their playing and all-round show was a little more tight compared to Lokeren. Maybe the bigger audience had something to do with that, or the Wacken reputation has just crossed the ocean and they were expecting a lot more...
Vince was still dropping a lot of lyrics, but by this time I figured: let's give it a shot without just minding that little slip-up. seen as Crüe got a bigger time slot in Wacken, they squeezed in some more old and some more new: "Motherfucker Of The Year" was added to the bill, as well as "Looks That Kill". The rest was the same, just scrambled up, proving that they know their classics and can use either one of them no matter where in the set.
It proves that they don't deliver the kick-ass stuff they did in the 80s anymore, but can still move a crowd to shouting along way down in the back. Not a waste of money for sure, and given an even bigger glam audience in Germany, they might come back and do even better...
Lizzy Borden - WET Stage - Friday
In one of the tent stages, Lizzy Borden kicked off for a short but powerful set on Friday. My only previous experience with these guys was a 70-person gig in a small venue, so this was kinda new to see them in front of 1000 people.
With the usual theatrics and go-go dancing/horror show, Lizzy Borden played hit after hit after hit, spitting "Red Rum", "Me Against The World", "There Will Be Blood Tonight", "American Metal" and a few more at us. To finish their brilliant set, the covered "Long Live Rock n' Roll" to pay tribute to the late great Ronnie James Dio in his Rainbow days. If this performance was to set the tone in the WET Stage, it was going to be great for the rest of the weekend.
Due to the fact that they had such a limited amount of time and so many songs the crowd was expecting, it was only natural that they had to drop some. However, I can't hold that against them (in fact, nobody can), seen as they played brilliantly anyhow.
Other gigs worth mentioning at this day: Anvil - Arch Enemy - Endstille - Slayer - Mad Max - Raven
Crucified Barbara - WET Stage - Saturday
My first time checking the all-girl band Crucified Barbara was anounced by my travel/festival/camping buddies with big hope and positivity, so once they hit the WET Stage, I was expecting a lot. Good for me, I received even more.
These girls from Stockholm, Sweden are clearly still building up a set of songs and a devote following, but already they're playing on a level that leaves many of their male contemporaries behind them. Excellent grooving, perfect vocals and a kick-ass attitude got me singing along on songs I never heard before after the first run of the chorus. "Sex Action", "Losing The Game" and "In Distortion We Trust" are just a few of the songs that we will hear more in the future...
I hope to be hearing more from these power-packing ladies, but something tells me I definitely will. Oh yeah, and they looked pretty gorgeous too...
Other gigs worth mentioning on this day: Overkill - Cannibal Corpse
W.A.S.P. - True Metal Stage - Saturday
One of the bands that pleases almost every metalhead there is, was to fill the better part of an hour on the sunny True Metal Stage. Starting off with a medley of their own songs blowing through the speakers, we knew exactly what to expect from W.A.S.P.
Blackie and company hit the stage right after, hitting the fans square in the face with a powerful yet cliché set of songs (and a customized guitar with a working saw on it, it looked awesome). "Babylon's Burning" was added to the set as get-to-know-the-new-album song, and it worked like crazy. The rest was what we could expect from them, but that isn't necessarily a bad thing.
The negative comment I have on this gig, is the same I have on any W.A.S.P. gig, and that is that censorship takes a big bite out of their setlist. Who doesn't want to hear "Cocaine Cowboys" and "Harder Faster" live? Frustrating as this may be, neither W.A.S.P. nor Wacken are to blame for dropping these songs, and what we saw was as true-blood American metal as it gets.
I mentioned earlier that a cliché set was delivered, and to me that adds a little negative touch to the review as well. Even though "The Idol" is a great song, it takes away the time (in every show I've seen so far) of at least 3 other songs and gets stretched too much in my opinion. "I Wanna Be Somebody" as closing song of the set makes amends for that, and this wasn't a bad show at all, but I guess I just love to find weak spots in good shows...
Wacken is still the biggest European metal festival and is doing one hell of a job to maintain that status. No fan goes unspoiled, there's food, drinks, merch and so much more that you can never all try or see over just the festival weekend.
At first, the stream of people felt overwhelming, but the grounds are big enough and well-divided enough to hold that many people. Although the helicopter shots still look pretty huge :)
For a glam/sleaze fan with a wider range of musical interest, this could just be the best European thing to happen (besides maybe Sweden Rock). We will be back!
Last Updated (Tuesday, 10 August 2010 09:24)