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Denny_Carmassi Blog

Humbug (Getting old....)

It's less than three hours 'til Christmas and I feel less Christmassy than Scrooge himself.

Nevertheless, I hope you all enjoy yourselves over the festive period. Don't eat too much, drive safely on icy roads and have a drink for me :) As long as it's non-alcoholic of course ;)

World Cup 2010

And it's over. Only seems like yesterday it began. All in all it wasn't too bad. The results certainly could have been better and I'm rather annoyed at the attitudes people took towards Suarez "Ruining the dreams a continent" and the Dutch for playing a regressive, aggressive shtyle of football. Vamos Espana and well done. A good result and deserved too.

Denny_Carmassi's meaningless awards! Remember, this is all my opinion, you don't have to agree with it.

Player of the tournament:

It has to be the actual winner of the Golden Ball, Diego Forlan. Outstanding.

Goal of the tournament:

Siphiwe Tshabalala against Mexico. The first goal of the tournament and in my opinion the best. I'm not counting free kicks, else Forlan would have won twice. :P (I would make the link clickable, but for some reason, none of my links ever work.)

Celebration of the tournament:

It has to be Tshabalala again, right after that goal was scored.

Young Player of the tournament:

Mesut Ozil of Germany. He played very well, and I expect teams will be queuing up to sign him now.

Honourable Mention

Ryan Nelsen, for being perhaps the most determined player in the whole tournament. His team fought an uphill struggle and he never gave in, until he physically couldn't give any more. And was yellow carded for having the audicity to have cramp.

The Dream Team:

GK: Casillas (ESP)

RB: Salcido (MEX)

CB: Friedrich (GER), Puyol (ESP)

LB: Fucile (URU)

RM: Donovan (USA)

CM: Honda (***) Gargano (URU)

LM: Ozil (GER)

ST: Forlan (URU), Hernandez (MEX)

Subs : Khune (GK, RSA) Ramos (RB/RM, ESP) Nelsen (CB, NZL) Cahill (CM/CAM AUS) Pienaar (CM, RSA) Iniesta (CM, ESP) Suarez (ST, URU) Villa (ST, ESP)

Wall of Shame:

Van Bommel. If you saw any match with him in it, it should be obvious.

Arjen Robben

Actual photo of him from the last game there.

About time I made a blog...

I find I have nothing to blog about. I mean, who seriously wants to hear about my life, what I'm up to and my opinions. No one, that's who. If you said otherwise...just no.

I've been going over my old blogs from when I properly started using this site, around March 2006. I was such a n00b. I seemed to think being stuck in snow was the worst thing ever and notable, as was French homework. Thank god I've personally discovered cynicism since then.

I started learning to drive today, after an "insightful" lesson from my Dad about how an engine works. :roll: Seriously, he refused to let me in the driver's seat until I could explain the workings of an engine. And I've forgotten it already. Something about fuel injection and pistons. That man boggles me sometimes. Still, my experience was odd. The throttle seems really sensitive as opposed to the other pedals, and I stalled like every two minutes. Thankfully it was only in a car park.

I got me a Add me up!

I've realised that every paragraph of this blog so far has started with I. How pretentious and narcissistic of me.

This one will be different. See, it totally was.

And now comes the realisation that almost four years on from my first GameSpot blog, I'm no different. I still blog about nonsense that affects no one and no one really cares about.

Tagged Again. More Joy

Let's get this over with quickly.

1) I've been beaten up for wearing a football (soccer for our pals across the pond) shirt. I was on holiday and was wearing an Athletico Madrid shirt in the middle of traditional Republican Spain. Not a good idea. I was actually hit three times that day for wearing that shirt, including an old woman in a motorized wheelchair. I was 8 years old as well, it's not like I was old enough to fully understand why Valencia province hated Franco. I've never fully forgiven the Benidorm public for that one.

2) I've started a bucket list. *Ahem* Here goes :

1. See Gamma Ray live

2. See Edguy live

3. See Accept live

That's it. Screw the Northern Lights or going to New York or naked skydiving - I wanna see Gamma Ray

3) I have intentions to learn how to play the keyboard one day. Seriously, hearing songs like thisand thiswith their simple, yet wonderful keyboard melodies really make me want to start playing the keyboard.

4) I'm really getting into sociology. The more I get into it, the more immersed I become. It's made me think a lot about things like what social claass I'm perceived to be due to my parents' occupations and the actual background I had. They don't match up.

5) I cannot abide the following words which are being used more and more in everyday life : Awesomeness, Loveage, Huggage, Lol, Soz, Boything.

6) Remember how on my last tag blog (which was forever ago) how I said I hated the Black Eyed Peas song I Gotta Feelin'? Well, I still do with the same intensity. Attention Scottish radio stations : STOP PLAYING THIS SONG. It almost makes me cry knowing that so many better bands across every genre of music are remaining undiscovered whilst The Black Eyed Peas rhyme sacred Jewish phrases with wishing to partake in nefarious deeds with disreputable women and mention that tonight's gonna be a good good night over and over and over and over and over and over and over and WE GET IT. Tonight will be a good night. Now shut up.

7) I don't own a console newer than the PS2. And to be honest, I don't really see the need to. GTA 4, Modern Warfare II and some game I can't even remember the name of (You fight zombies in a shopping centre) are the only games I want to play. The current gen doesn't interest me at all.

8 ) I live in Scotland's UFO capital. Seriously. I've seen about three in my entire lifetime.So long as they're not blowing up our planet,I don't particularly care about the existence of aliens, before anyone asks.

9) I really dislike Facebook. I'm fed up with all the various requests that I get and the amount of people who use Facebook to complain about their homework. If they spent more time doing homework instead of going on Facebook, there might not be a need to complain

10) I refuse to tag anyone as I wish to stop the perpetuation of this disease. I'm sorry I took all that time away from you. I really am sorry, dear reader. To make it up to you : watch this. It certainly made my day.

Y&T and Ron Keel

Have I really not been to see anyone since Bloodstock? Holy crap, need to fix that. And I did it in style ;)

Ron Keel : Anyone heard of him? No? Not at all? Thought so. Ron Keel was most famously frontman for Keel, but also made appearnces in Black Sabbath temporarily, Steeler (US), Ironhorse and Fair Game and well as releasing a solo album.

Tonight, Ron Keel steps on stage clutching only an acoustic guitar and a bottle of beer. But that's it. There's no backing band. This is a one man show, which I must way was impressive in that respect.

We were treated to Ron Keel's story of his musical career and he selected songs from some of the various bands he's ben in to play to us accousticly. We got a cover of Bad Company's Shooting Star, Black Sabbath's Heaven and Hell and of course Keel's Because the Night which is their Final Countdown. That one song that is bigger than anything they've ever done or will do, like The Final Countdown or Autograph's Turn up the Radio.

A decent set of pipes posessed by Ron Keel and a nice personal atmosphere meant this show was fairly enjoyable. A nice little warm up, but I think it could have worked better after a main band has been on. 6/10

Y&T : This would mark my third time seeing Y&T. Y&T always seem to get lumped into the Glam Metal scene of the 80's, but I have no idea why. They don;t sound like Glam or look Glam or anything. It's just Heavy Metal but not quite as heavy as it could be. Until you see them live. I'd previously had the priveledge of seeing them at the Glasgow Cathouse twice, but poor sound always ruins every gig there, so an upgraded venue which has some of the best sound quality I've ever heard was a fantastic move. However, the crowd was not much bigger than the two times I'd seen them in the Cathouse meaning the hall was half empty. But Y&T are professionals. I'm sure they would have happily played to an audience of 1, never mind about 200

Y&T bursted on to the stage with Hurricane, making a nice change from the usual Open Fire. They were excellent as usual, but something just wasn't quite right. After two or three songs, frontman Dave Meniketti announced that he's sick and is unable to sing properly, but he'll soldier on with a little bit of "medicinal" Jager :P

After some more excellent quality songs, Dave just couldn't continue anymore. The rest of the songs were going to have to be instrumental it seemed, and that was mostly the case, except when bassist Phil Kenmore took over vocals for a bit, asking the crowd to chant the much loved Y&T tagline "F*** you Phil!" because he claims Scotland is the best country in the world for swearing, in terms of sounding good doing it and the wide usage of it. But Phil was no substitute for Dave, so only sang one song, before Y&T closed with Forever.

Good setlist tonight, essentially a greatest hits. Lipstick and Leather, Dirty Girl, Forever, I Believe in You, Mean Streak, Hurricane, Midnight in Tokyo, Hang 'em High and others. Some songs had to be cut though, for obvious reasons. That meant no Black Tiger and no Open Fire. They still have never played Summertime Girls, and long may that continue.

Before leaving the stage and cutting I'd guess around 5 songs, Dave announced that because this show was litered with problems, everyone in the hall tonight gets 50% off the next album on the next tour. To be honest, I didn't need any apology. I was blown away as it was. 9/10

Songs from the gig on YouTube (will open in a new window)

Mean Streak


Forever (Instrumental, due to Dave's illness)

I Believe in You

Although, Dave did ask the audience specifically NOT to put clips up on YouTube :P They took that on board well, didn't they Dave?

I've been tagged. What joy.

I'm going to love doing this about as much as you enjoy reading the daily influx of these tag blogs. Speaking of which, I blame this guy for their prevalence on websites today.

1) Every post I make on GameSpot with the exception of a few blogs (like the Bloodstock ones) are made off the top of my head. I don't take time to think of witty responses or anything, everything is done in the spur of the moment.

2) It's no secret that I'm a fan of Metal. I have been for as long as I can remember. Sure, I had a wee period where I liked Punk too, but I quickly came round to my senses. These days, you'll likely find me listening to Saxon, Helloween, Iced Earth, Gamma Ray, Stratovarius, Hibria, Firewind, Threshold and bands of that ilk

3) I play bass. I currently own a Vox White Shadow, BC Rich Bich and Yamaha Unnamed 5-string. I'm currently trying to learn some more Candlemass songs. Leif Edling could just be the most underrated bassist ever.

4) I feel like punching holes in walls whenever I hear that stupid Black Eyed Peas song "Tonight's gonna be a good good night". I bet you can't guess what song my sister just started playing :roll:

5) I'm a fan of alternate history. Wether it be Steampunk, Dieselpunk or "what if" scenarios from real history. In the video gaming world, Crimson Skies and the Scotland 1924 level of TimeSplitters 3 suffice. But more are needed, and soon. Games set in a post-apocalyptic world are also cool, wether it be in the future or the past.

6) I had a serious eye problem once at age 6. I had optic neuritis in both eyes, aparently the first ever case of it in Falkirk district. It resulted in me spending almost two months in hospital and being practically blind for a good portion of it. I say practically because I could distinguish shapes, but I could barely see. To this day I still have no idea how they cured it, but it inolved the extraction of spinal fluid whilst I was awake. Thankfully, I can't remember that. I have to wear glasses all the time as a result. And the man from Specsavers said I was lying. :roll: That's also why I take personal offence when someone who is quite clearly the funniest person alive says "Should've gone to Specsavers" to me. Bonus fact for you right there.

7) I've been to Auschwitz. I saw my visit there as more of a disproval of the assumed "facts" we have about Auschwitz and the Holocaust in general. It is amazing how many falseities are taught about the Holocaust through the media. Perhaps they are minute details, but for such a profilific disaster you'd think they'd want to present it just as it was.

8 ) I always thought that if I ever got tagged, I'd have to do the mandatory self-indulgent fact about my achievements...then I realised I have none. Except being fat. Yes, that is an achievement.

9) I have no idea why, but I notice excellent synergy between most Power Metal and cities and/or the night. No idea why, but I love it :D Nothing beats driving through a city at night listening to Hibria.

10) I got in one little fight and my mom got scared and said "You're moving with your auntie and uncle in Bel-Air"

Bloodstock 2009 - Sunday

Sunday: The last day is always set to be good. You want to send the crowd home in a great mood, so you pick a fun/impressive headliner. Last year it was Nightwish, who certainly fit that bill. This year we had Europe, yes the band that wrote The Final Countdown…but there was plenty more available to enjoy.

All photos used were taken by me. To view the photos in full, simply click the title of the blog. I'm no photographic wizard, and all photos were resized using GameSpot. Hopefully, that sould explain any loss of quality.

Beholder: Originally confirmed to play the Sophie Lancaster Stage, Coventry's Beholder were upgraded to open up the mainstage on the Sunday, apparently on the pretence that they would have an album out by that time, and it had nothing to do with the fact one of the Bloodstock team is a member of the band :roll:

Well, with no album out, Beholder took to the mainstage and gave the hungover crowd a decent wake-up call.

Playing a Thrashy style of Heavy Metal they delivered a powerful performance that was sadly ruined by some terrible vocals. Overall I guess they merited the slot, but there was some hiccups. 6/10

Sabaton: Swedish Power Metal is quite common, but it would be wrong to assume Sabaton are just another HammerFall. It would be most very wrong. Sabaton are a really fun band, although they do not always have such fun themes. No, rather they prefer to talk of various battles in World War II, ranging from the invasion of Poland to the fall of Berlin and everything inbetween, I've had the pleasure of seeing them once before, and it was an astounding performance, so I had high hopes for this one.

And Sabaton surpassed all my expectations. Frontman Joakim Broden ran on stage declaring "There's no intro tape today, our setlist is short enough" and then blasted straight into Ghost Division.

So they play Ghost Division, I'm loving it, so are the other folk at the front, but when the song ends the crowd roar was about 10 times louder than I was expecting. :? Not a bad thing, I just wasn't expecting it.

Another surprise came from the stage presence of Sabaton, last year in Glasgow it was great, but presented with a bigger stage Sabaton excelled themselves in that respect, their stage presence, particularly Joakim's is something to behold. Especially as they were second band on.

Again, Sabaton picked an almost perfect setlist for me. Ghost Division, Art of War, 40:1, Primo Victoria and Metal Machine/Metal Crue. Everything I wanted to hear the most, apart from Wolfpack and Panzer Battalion.

All in all, a great setlist, crowd reaction and performance by the band resulted in Sabaton being one of the bands of the festival. The signing queue was proof of their popularity too. 10/10

Girlschool: Some more NWOBHM, this time being played entirely by women. Girlschool are famous for touring with Motorhead and drinking them under the table, and keeping up with Lemmy's way of life.

And it appears to have taken its toll on them 20 years on. Watching them from afar in the signing queue for Sabaton, they looked really unprofessional, even from that distance. Girlschool were constantly fiddling with guitars and cables and all sorts.

The unprofessionalism was furthered with the fact their set was full of in-jokes and personal jokes that they found funny but no one else did. :?

Despite this, the sloppy NWOBHM sounded good to me at the time. In retrospect, they were rubbish. Not impressed, and I doubt I ever will be. 5/10

Equilibrium: "They'll be great" I was told by a friend. Recorded, I didn't like their brand of Folk/Black at all. But, I thought they might be different live, especially as so many people on the Bloodstock forums claimed they'll be excellent.

I left about two songs in to get some more CDs. It was just bland. Tiresome band for me, but the crowd seemed to lap it up in droves. Damn students. 4/10

Anathema: A band that almost inexplicably went from a Death/Doom sound to Student Rock as I call it. You may call it Atmospheric Rock or something, but it seems to me students are the group that Anathema appeals to most, as well as half of Poland.

But the respite from the Metal onslaught was very welcome. A chance to sit down and chill out. Fragile Dreams started Anathema's set and goddamn it, I was happy with them for playing that :) The rest of the set seemed to just melt together in a wonderfully melodic sound. Some particular songs stuck out in my mind, Fragile Dreams obviously, but there was also a momentary cover of Black Sabbath, for about 4 bars or so.

To finish the set, Anathema played a cover of Iron Maiden's Phantom of the Opera, due to their replacement drummer being able to play it. They nailed it.

I thought they were spectacular at the time, just amazing, but in retrospect that was because it was something more tuneful amongst a Metal onslaught. Despite that, they were still enjoyable. 6/10 but that might be a bit harsh.

Turisas: A Metal Hammer favourite, and you hear people talking about them all the time. With only two albums out, Turisas have done incredibly well for themselves, despite being a decent, but not outstanding band in my opinion. All day it was unavoidable to spot people painted in red and black and shouting "BATTLE METAL!" It was obvious that the crowd were desperate to see them

Sure enough, Turisas were a good live band. Attracting a huge crowd painted from head to toe and clutching Viking weapons, they gave the crowd some of the best 40 minutes of the weekend. But under Turisas' good time drinking music, there lies a large degree of irony and self mockery which I never new existed until Bloodstock, when Warlord got people to fight over his shoes.

That earned them a new respect from me, and coupled with some good tunes from the album I own such as To Holmgard and Beyond and…Rasputin :P proved that they were indeed a great live band. Very enjoyable, the perfect band to watch at Bloodstock 7/10

Moonspell: It's a shame for Portugal's highest selling Metal band. They were billed too high in the opinion of many, and they'd been sandwiched in between Turisas and Amon Amarth. That's an almost impossible slot.

They hadn't impressed me on record, and the crowd had severely reduced for Moonspell. But it wasn't just an empty crowd that spoiled them. They had some poor sound, most of which just became an incoherent mess to me at the back. Their drummer was very talented, but that wasn't enough to keep me there very long. Time to go to the Unsigned stage it seems…. 4/10

Nightmare World: A relatively new creation, featuring Pete Morten from Threshold on vocals. The songs on their MySpace had impressed me, and I did have plans to but their EP, but I though I should just get it at Bloodstock instead. Some top quality British Power/Prog stuff

Goddamn, they were awesome! :D Full of energy and emotion, Nightmare World seemed incredibly happy to be playing, which is always good. Superb musicianship, stage presence and energy resulted in a great performance from Nightmare World…but they never brought that EP with them…8/10

Amon Amarth: One of the most popular bands in Metal today, and it's really merited. Amon Amarth are a fantastic band at the top of their game and top of their genre. One of the few Death Metal (but I'm starting to question that) bands I enjoy. This was bound to be good.

And the Guardians of Asgaard didn't disappoint. The chest-beating Metal onslaught struck a chord with the now re-kindled drunken crowd and they erupted in mosh pits, horns throwing and ehh Viking rowing

The setlist was great, it was filled with every AA song you could want to hear, such as Pursuit of Vikings, Runes to my Memory, Guardians of Asgaard, Twilight of the Thunder God, Death in Fire or maybe it was just my favourites? :? Either way, it was difficult to not be impressed by them.

A great performance from a great band. Their upcoming UK tour is bound to be a victorious march. Amon Amarth really highlighted how bad Moonspell were. Poor Moonspell…but well done Amon Amarth 10/10

Eden's Curse: I had hoped to see Satyricon, but I decided that Eden;s Curse would be better to watch. I had the misfortune of seeing them on tour with Stratovarius and Firewind. Poor sound plagued their performance that night, indeed every band was ruined that night by sound. On CD I was much more impressed. In fact, that doesn't begin to describe it. Eden's Curse are amazing, a fantastic guitar player in Thorsten Kohene and a fantastic bass player in Scotsman Paul Logue, a fantastic vocalist in Michael Eden, a fantastic keyboard player who has just been replaced, and a "meh" drummer. Their "Melodic" Metal is some of the best music to have been made this decade.

Whatever was wrong with them that night in Glasgow was reversed totally. Powerfully opening up with Masquerade Ball, Eden's Curse gave an early indication that this was going to be a night to remember. Following that was going to be difficult, but they did it with such amazing songs as Angels and Demons, Just Like Judas and Fly Away.

It was an almost perfect set, just missing Fallen King. It was almost a prefect gig too, as Eden's Curse had brought along session/live guitarist Jay Parmar who added to their sound no end, making their "Melodic" stylings much heavier.

Michael Eden informed us that he'd travelled 4,000 miles to play this gig, and I seriously think the trip was worth it, as he stated himself. The crowd wasn't big, in fact it was about a quarter of the size of the Celesty crowd from yesterday, but it was a dedicated crowd singing along to every word.

A touching statement about Sophie Lancaster was delivered, and this sparked an unexpectedly warm reaction from the crowd with chants of the charity's name and claps being echoed around the tent. I think Sophie would have been proud.

A great performance from a fantastic band, it was a quick rush over to the merch booth (Which was just t-shirts over a Metal barrier) to pick up a tour tee. They'll be back in December apparently, with Arthemis. I'll be at the Catty, front and centre.10/10

Europe: Do do do dooo Dadada doo doo…the familiar keyboard refrain will forever haunt the legacy of Europe. The Swedish Hard Rock legends are really well known for that song, and indeed it's used in adverts and on crappy compilation CDs. But that song is not Metal, so why should Europe headline a Metal festival? That's the question I asked myself, and figured that Bloodstock would not have let them headline above say, Saxon, if they didn't merit it. I was unfamiliar with their back catalogue beyond Final Countdown and Rock the Night, but I found some of the newer material such as Last Look at Eden good yet frustratingly light, it has the potential to be so much more heavier.

And that's what's wrong with all of Europe's back catalogue. Europe play a great UFO-****of hard rock, but it's just not heavy enough.

So viewing them as a Hard Rock band, Europe were excellent but nothing original. Blasting out hits like Girl from Lebanon, Rock the Night and newer stuff like Last Look at Eden the crowd seemed to react to it better than was expected.

But did they merit the headline slot? Yes, in my opinion. I had a brilliant time watching them and their feel-good rock. Joey Tempest did seem to have an air of arrogance around him, but I don't think it was a prominent as some would suggest. The band (well, Joey) had a good stage presence and a really clear sound.

And of course, they played it. They couldn't not play it now could they? ;) Crowd reaction to that song was good, yet a shame for Europe at the same time. People broke into joke mosh pits, and had been shouting for the song all night. It was obvious they only wanted to hear the one song. Admittedly I did laugh at the bloke with a sign that said "About f****** time!" :lol:

In one way I think Europe would have done better not playing that song, it has tarnished their reputation as a credible band, and it discredited their good performance that night. But all that matters is that I enjoyed them, and that I think they deserved the headline slot. 7/10

So I left the festival in a good mood, having been treated to some of the best Hard Rock out there. Next year I will definitely be making a return. So far bands confirmed for next year are Obituary, Ross the Boss, Rage and Andromeda. I consider Rage and Andromeda "favourite" bands, so I'm well there, especially as it will be Andromeda's first ever UK gig.

See you all in 2010 :twisted:

Bloodstock 2009 - Saturday


We got some rain on Saturday. 2 minutes of it during Wolf, but other than that it was dry and sunny all day. Walking to the arena, one could see a multitude of Blind Guardian t-shirts. I think it was obvious who everyone was going to see today.

Again, all photos used are mine.

Battlelore: I used to like them a lot more than what I do. I've got the Sword's Song album, and I wasn't overly impressed by it, but it was decent. There's only so much Lord of the Rings someone can take, particularly when Blind Guardian are playing.

Well Battlelore were a lot better live than on CD. A lot heavier, and just generally better.

They seemed to hold the attention of the audience, mostly because of their costumes and one particularly nice member to look at ;) Overall, pretty good 7/10

Wolf: I like Wolf, but I really don't get the hype over them. You'd think they were the best band to ever come from Sweden if you treated these opinions seriously. Trad Metal has had a bit of a revival recently, and Wolf are at the forefront apparently (despite the fact they've been going for 14 years. Don't listen to Metal Hammer kiddies!)

But I guess Wolf merited their hype at Bloodstock. Like the recurring theme of this festival, Wolf picked an almost perfect setlist for me, only missing Curse You Salem. Almost every song was from the new album, the only exception I can remember being The Bite, which I was hoping would be in the setlist anyway.

Wolf were a lot more fun than I thought they would be. They gave out beers to the crowd and interacted with them very well. They were also very energetic and made the best of the short time they had been allotted.

A proud defender of true Metal (There's something to be said when every member wears an Anvil shirt) and a band that genuinely enjoyed being there, Wolf pleased the crowd and I for one was pleased by Wolf. Looking forward to seeing them next month. 9/10

The Haunted: You know At the Gates right? Yeah, the legendary Swedish Death Metal band, pioneered the Gothenburg sound. I'm ashamed to say they became this.

The Haunted's brand of Death/Thrash was incredibly clumsy, and left little distinguishable. Every song seemed to sound the same.

The Haunted did not receive the usual warm reception from the Bloodstock crowd, and quite rightly so. Boring, boring, boring, boring, boring….4/10

I took that photo sitting down from my chair, so empty was the crowd.

Entombed: Bleughhhhh….


Switchblade Scream: Entombed were so bad, I walked out after about 30 seconds, bought some awesome CDs and watched the only Scottish band at BOA, Switchblade Scream, from Glasgow.

Switchblade Scream have a lot of controversy surrounding their place at BOA. The Glasgow final had some fantastic bands playing it, such as Farseer, Ascension and Syth. I never made the gig, but I've heard from everyone that attended that one of those bands should have won…anyone but Switchblade basically.

Still, not a bad wee band. Their brand of Melodic Power Metal is quite enjoyable, but not as much as the other bands I mentioned earlier.

Live they were pretty good too. They received a pretty good reception, even if it was from Scottish folk only. :P Some good songs and a decent vocalist left me feeling quite impressed. That happiness was eliminated a minute later when I returned to the mainstage and still caught another two songs from Entombed. 7/10

Candlemass: Wow, Sweden's been really well represented today. If you don't know who Candlemass are, then leave the hall. They need no introduction.

I had an awesome spot in the crowd for Candlemass, but we were forced to move back so they could fix the stage. Apparently it was falling apart and could kill us at the front and the bands. Two questions entered my mind here: Why are Candlemass' guitar techs allowed on stage if this is the case, and why didn't it collapse during Entombed?

So the problem fixed (All they did was shove a pole slightly further back) and my spot at the barrier lost (I was still at the front, only two folk were in front of me) I was still excited for Candlemass.

Just wow. Candlemass were amazing. I don't think I've ever felt so compelled by a band. I was totally lost in the music and loved every minute of them, just to bask in their glory was an amazing feeling. Robert Lowe was absolutely perfect in the role as Candlemass frontman, embracing every doom-laden riff with emotion, doing some wicked Undertaker thing with his eyes. Leif obviously had demanded a loud bass in the mix, and that just added to the amazing experience, as did a cover of Rainbow's Kill the King :D. If you get the chance to see these guys live, take it regardless of cost 10/10

Celesty (Acoustic set): New for this year was an acoustic stage where bands from throughout the weekend would chill with a shot of Jager and an acoustic guitar. Celesty caused quite a storm when they were announced, and I was also looking forward to their performance today. Their acoustic set marked the band's first ever performance outside of Finland.

I was really impressed by what I heard. The vocalist and guitarist were present, and still managed to play some songs from the Celesty back catalogue very well. After songs like Reign of Elements (In which the singer filled in the keyboard parts with ba ba ba's :lol: ) they finished their set with a cover of the Stratovarius timeless peice Hunting High and Low, and they played it very well. It set me up nicely for their performance later on. 7/10

Enslaved: Another Scandinavian band? Well, I wasn't expecting much from this one. Enslaved apparently play Progressive Black Metal

Sure enough, it was Black Metal and it contained enough clever tricks and odd time signatures to considered Progressive. But they still didn't move me at all. Quite boring, and actually sent people to sleep. 4/10

Kreator: A favourite of drunk teenagers everywhere, but probably my least favourite of the big four of German Thrash, but I still enjoy them.

Bloodstock has left me wanting to hear more from Kreator. They were really energetic, and put on one hell of a performance. They jump around the stage like madmen. Maybe I should choose my words carefully, as I think their vocalist is certified insane. Or maybe he's a brilliant actor. I don't know, but he was funny either way – he encouraged the crowd to "KILL in ze moshpit" and denounced a journalist who he had an interview with saying "I told him Kreator shows are about peace love and unity…well guess what? I LIED to ze *******" :lol:

I got to hear every song I wanted to from them, such as Enemy of God and Flag of Hate. True Thrash ****cs.

A good performance, I'd happily go see them again. 7/10

Celesty: Picture of you will, a Finnish Symphonic Power Metal Band. Voila. Celesty is born. I quite enjoy them recorded, they do what the do really well. This gig at Bloodstock marked the band's first ever appearance outside of Finland.

And I'm glad I caught them. Quite enjoyable, and the band were very excited to be there and were genuinely surprised by their reaction. Their sound was incredibly clear and they delivered each song with emotion. Despite missing one crucial member (keyboards) they still impressed the crowd incredibly. 8/10

Arthemis: Italian Power Metal that is head and shoulders above their countrymen and their oversaturated Power Metal market. Arthemis caught some attention recently when it was announced that Alessio was leaving them. I think this was their last gig with Alessio, and if it was he did them proud.

Arthemis were amazing. Their stage presence was something to behold and their sound on that night was so much heavier than it is recorded, meaning I enjoyed them so much more than I do recorded. Alessio is also a very competent live vocalist and he'll be sadly missed by myself.

Fantastic setlist, and an amazing performance led to me enjoying Arthemsi incredibly. 9/10

Blind Guardian: A band that needs no introduction. Both their Speed Metal era and their modern sound are amazing, showcasing some of the best music, not just Metal, to have ever existed. They have released brilliant album after brilliant album and are one of my all-time favourite bands.

Another position at the front of the crowd was in order to witness this amazing band.

As I've said before, bands were picking setlists that were almost perfect for me and Blind Guardian were no exception. Opening up with Time Stands Still (At the Iron Hill) Blind Guardian proved after just one song that they are one of the best live bands ever.

The highlight of Blind Guardian is undoubtedly front man Hansi, and he was on form tonight. He gave an absolutely electric and highly emotional performance, you could hear his enthusiasm for the crowd and the music in every note. He didn't hide behind the microphone stand either, he was at the front of the stage all the time, engaging with the crowd who gave Blind Guardian a night to remember.

The setlist included such personal and fan favourites as Nightfall, Welcome to Dying, Fly, Valhalla, Lord of the Rings, The Script for my Requiem, Quest for Tanelorn, Imaginations From the Other Side, Mirror Mirror and of course The Bard's Song

Which deserves a paragraph of it's own. As is the tradition with The Bard's Song, Hansi sang only a few lines and the crowd filled in the rest. You have to be there to experience how amazing this feeling is. Even though I was cicked in the face by a crowdsurfer, I'm still going to remember BG playing The Bard's Song forever.

Sacred was on the setlist too, and thanks to YouTube/Sacred 2 everyone knows that song too.

Fantastic performance and crowd reception, Blind Guardian merited their place as Metal legends. 10/10

So as not to spoil a perfect evening, I missed Cradle of Filth. As it turns out, they were forced offstage when some moron threw giant gobstoppers at them at hospitalised the guitarist. As much as I hate Cradle, I would never ever do that.

Saturday was amazing, my sunburn now had sunburn and the forecast looked good for Sunday too: Metal with some spells of Metal. :twisted:

Bloodstock 2009 - Friday

The weekend before last saw my second time at the UK's premier Metal festival. It improved no end this year. The facilites were better, the sound was better, free programmes, improved quallity of bands on the second and third stages and a diverse and yet personally appealing line-up. It was a festival to remember.

All photos used are mine, taken at the festival. They have been resized using GameSpot, so apologies for any poor quality. I'm trying to limit it to one or two photos per band, but some like Blind Guardian and Candlemass (Saturday) deserve more. I'd also like to think I've posted the best photo I took of each band, but some bands I got terrible photos of, mostly because I thought they were terrible.


I actually arrived on time this year! :D Last year I missed Evile, Saint Deamon, Praying Mantis and TYR because I was late :evil:

The sun blared down all day and I got sunburnt before 3pm.

First band up was supposed to be Million Dollar Reload, but instead they were swapped with NWOBHM legends Blitzkreig. I mean, clearly Million Dollar Reload are the more popular band:roll:

Blitzkreig: The last band to be announced for Bloodstock and just one of many announcements I was happy about. I've seen Blitzkreig before and honest to god, I thougt they were a joke, but checking out their recorded material proved otherwise. They're a brilliant band who don't get enough recognition.

Blitzkreig played what was essentially a greatest hits set, including Blitzkreig, Theater of the Damned, I'm not Insane, Escape from the Village and many more. A good set, coupled with a band who were energetic and seemed genuinely happy to be playing made for a good start to the festival. 7/10

Million Dollar Reload : 2009's token hard rock band. I don't really have much positive to say about them, it's the same kind of music you've heard a million times before from Heaven's Basement, Roadstar, Hurricane Party, The Answer, and yes I'm aware three of those bands are the same band :P It's to exemplify that they all sound similar.

The Northern Irish lads weren't too impressive live either, delivering an energetic performance, but that's about it. Their frontman's banter with the crowd was entertaining though, if only because he was asking people to sing along in preperation for Carcass :lol: 5/10

Insomium: Aparantly, the Finish Meldoic Doom/Death Metallers have pulled out of a previous Bloodstock festival, and this their first Bloodstock. Whatever the circumstances they pulled a HUGE crowd, probably one of the biggest of that day, which is saying a lot considering they were so low on the bill

Well, I found their popularity to be unfounded. They genuinely bored me, sounding exactly like every other band of their ilk. Maybe I just don't get it, maybe it's just not for me, or maybe it's just that I prefer traditional doom. Whatever the reason I didn't like them. 4/10

Die Apokalyptischen Reiter An old (by which I mean like 3 years ago) favourite of mine, this was going to be a bit of a nostalgic day for me. :) The German Metallers are difficult to label. Their music really contains a bit of every type of Metal. However, there's an overwhelming sense of Death and Power Metal about them. Their article in the Bloodstock programme stated they were bringing " a rubber boat challenge" I was intrigued.

The announer announced that "You won't believe this band" and sure enough, apart from a few I doubt many people had heard of them before hand. Not even the fans among us were sure what to expect. The first member of DAR on stage was their keyboardist, who was dressed in "exotic" attire coupled with a whip. That was enough to win the crowd over to be honest

The next 40 minutes were simply amazing. I don't think I've ever had so much fun watching a band. Fuchs was by far one of the most electric frontmen of the festival, which is saying quite a lot. Him coupled with goood music made for a brilliant set, featuring Riders on the Storm, We Will Never Die, Seemann and loads more.

We did get the rubber boat challenge. Fuchs explained the he was once a sailor, "and like every good sailor he had a girl in every port" and appealed for a girl to be his Bloodstock girl. At first he recieved interest from men only, to which he answered "you, you are not a woman...but perhaps you would like to be punished?" as he pointed their gimp. :lol: Crowd banter is always good, but that's one of the best I've ever heard.Anyways, he got a girl to come on stage to be romanced during Seemann, and then he sent her crowdsurfing in a rubber boat.

A very entertaining band, hopefully they can do a UK tour now on the back of the reception they recieved from the BOA crowd. 10/10

Municipal Waste: Another nostalgic band, they were my favourite Thrash band in Summer 2007, which was perpetuated by when I saw them live. They are a highly fun band, the kind that never takes itself seriously, which leads to some overly funny lyrics, songs and crowd banter.

And sure enough, the crowd shared my sentiments. The crowd and moshpit were massive, and they looked really impressed with what they were hearing. I was too, I really thought they were good.

Frontman Tony Foresta asked the crowd to move forward, and we all did. He then announced that Bloodstock was going to break the world record for the most crowd surfers in one song. Obviously, this was a blatant joke, but the crowd were willing to play along, especially as an adjudicator was brought out. So Ryan Waste fired up "Beer Pressure" and all you could see for the next 4 minutes was a sea of bodies going over the crowd.

At the end of the song, Tony claimed we achieved 428 people :lol:

Other highlights included Terror Shark, Born to Party, The Thrashin' of the Christ, The Inebriator, Headbanger Face Rip, Sadistic Magician and the newly re-written I Wanna Kill the President. That song was written about George Bush, and now Obama's in charge it's called "I Wanna Chill with the President" :lol: 9/10

Really, the only band I started enjoying after the festival. Prior to this, I'd mostly avoided them due to their popularity among students. Their doomy brand of Metal is everything modern Anathema could be. I was left quite impressed by the Swedes.

A good set, but the only song I can remember is July :? It was also the only time the whole day it was grey. Quite appropriate. 6/10

Sodom The third nostalgic band for me here today. :) Their M-16 album is a personal favourite, offering the very best that Thrash has to offer. If you could have told me two years ago that I would go to a festival woith Die Apokalyptischen Reiter, Sodom, Municpal Waste and Blind Guardian, I would assume you were meaning Wacken 2007.

But I was really looking forward to Sodom. This was their first gig in the UK for 20 years, and a lot of Napalm has flown under the bridge since then.

Sodom opened up with my favourite track by them, the seminal Napalm in the Morning. Even though Tom Angelripper's bass cut halfway through the song, they reminded me why they're my favourite Thrash band.

What followed was simply magical, and I think Onkel Tom was reading my mind when he picked the setlist. It contained such favourites of mine as City of God, Remember the Fallen, Agent Orange, M-16, The Saw is the Law and Surfin' Bird

A fantastic performance, Sodom really merited their place as Thrash legends. A UK tour soon please? 10/10

Saxon: My most favourite band. Ever. This marked the 6th time I'd seen them, and the 2nd time on the same tour, which also included Wacken, Hammerfest and Sonisphere.

But I never thought Saxon would be as good as they were. I don't know why, but this was definitely the best I've seen them at. Lord knows why, but Saxon's performance that night made their lacklustre performance with Motorhead totally forgettable.

Setlist included: Batallions of Steel, Wheels of Steel, Let me Feel Your Power (:D), Princess of the Night and every other Saxon song I've heard so many times before. And that's my only complaint. But seriously, Saxon proved at Wacken what they're capable of when they vary their setlist a bit. I watched their Wacken performance online, and like everyone who saw it, both on the webcam and live agrees that it was one of the best Saxon shows ever. I was expecting something similar here, but to no avail. Still, 11/10

Good photo, but blurry :(

Arch Enemy: It was gonna be a busy night for Mike Ammot. He was playing with both Arch Enemy and Carcass, poor guy. Arch Enemy are a decent band in my opinion, and a decent band to have as headliner, but it well should have been Saxon.

I saw Arch Enemy from a distance as I was waiting for Saxon in the signing queue. Even after the first song was over, it was fairly obvious what was preventing Arch Enemy from being totally fantastic : Angela Gossow.

I would seriously consider giving Arch Enemy a 10/10 if she didn't ruin it. Arch Enemy are fantastic musicians, especially the drummer and the solo slots they did were brilliant.

Angela ruined what little I actually knew of the setlist. She never stuck to vocal lines and would often ruin riffs, solos and entire songs by screaming where there are not meant to be screams.

Great performance, would have been improved tenfold if Angela wasn't there. 8/10

Carcass: I've been flamed on several forums and in real life for criticising them. I still maintain they're nowhere near big enough to headline Bloodstock. I wasn't impressed on record, besides one song but I thought I'd give them a shot anyway. See if they live up to the hype.

They really didn't. Their set eventually just descended into a clumsy mess in which every song sounded the exact same. The only thing that held my interest as long as it did was the video screen and fireworks.

Maybe it was the fact I'd been up since 4:30 AM, or maybe they were just rotten (Get it?) but they almost sent me to sleep and I had to leave before I heard Heartwork.

Not good at all. 3/10

But overall, Friday was amazing. The only really bad band all day was Carcass. Saturday was just as good, stay tuned for a blog on that soon.

Obligitory Birthday Blog

It's my birthday.


I'm 17 now. Hopefully that means I'm a bit better at pretending I'm 18 :P

I don't seem to share my birthday with anyone interesting, apart from Ginger Rodgers (Dancer/actress)

However, the 16th July is:

- The day in 1945 when the first ever nuclear bomb was tested in New Mexico

- The day when the Apolo Moon Landing mission was launched. They took off today.

That's about it though.