Sweden Rock 2014

Well well well! At last I’m home, and at last I’ve gathered myself together to finally write this little thingy. A summary of Sweden Rock 2014! It all began at home really. Me trying to pack smartly, and failing miserably. This year, I had decided to drive all the way down to Sweden Rock, and of course home as well, and this leads to me going: Fuck it, I have all this space in my car, I’ll rearrange it later. Said and done, basically.

TUESDAY

So well, yeah. I drove, and drove, and around 9pm I finally hit the wonderful place of Norje. I parked my car and my dear Anna came and met up with me outside the festivalcamping to guide me to their camp, or, as we would come to call it, the Cradle of Filt. I was greeted by the rest of the campmembers, set up my tent and joined them a short while for some small talk before hitting bed.

WEDNESDAY

Well, here’s the deal. I only had a three day pass, but decided to get down to Norje already on Tuesday to hang out with the people and to make sure I got to camp with them. So this day was mainly spent walking down the market they have outside the arena, paying a visit to Sweden Rock Shop and also meeting up with Hansi, a norwegian friend of mine I hadn’t seen for AGES. Like, literally, seven years since I last saw him. Things have changed soooo much. Well. I can’t show you much from this day, beside this lovely picture of my VERY organised tent.

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Phineas & Ferb are literally with me EVERYWHERE, I swear!

THURSDAY

So, finally, the day had come for me to be able to join them sweeties on the festival area. We started the day with watching Bombus, before I headed over to Festivalstage to watch Pretty Maids. They were well good, and they also brought out the sun on this cloudy day!

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After Pretty Maids I headed over for Roxie 77’s unusually short gig, and his many… MANY guitarists on stage. It was a pretty epic thing to see, and I really REALLY like the initiative taken about inviting aspiring guitarists on stage!

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After Roxie I headed for some of the recordtents in hunt for Sabaton’s “Heroes” and H.E.A.T’s “Tearing Down The Walls”. Two years ago I bought “Carolus Rex” AND “Address The Nation” on Sweden Rock, so I figured that as far as it’s possible, to make it a tradition to buy Sabatons and H.E.A.T’s album on the festival. I also found myself going away with “All You Can Eat” from Steel Panther. I went back to camp and met up with Hansi and we headed for Tesla. It was a pretty fun gig, if I may say so! After this I headad back to the camp again.

Here’s the deal with Cradle of Filt – we weren’t the greatest partycamp. We weren’t the drunkest or anything. But you know what? I found my people. These are the kind of people I like spending time with. And we had quite fun. Cycling and all.

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The name Cradle of Filt (Cradle of Blankets) comes from that we all literally spent time curled up in our blankets. And everyone but Oliver had a Sweden Rock one, too. Amazing. The night moved on and Anna tagged me along to Rob Zombie, which might have been the absolute best decision this festival. I found a new band. And no, I don’t know what it is with me and monsterbands. Apparently, a band needs to be somewhat monstery for me to like them. Haha.

After Rob we headed for Alice Cooper, being really excited. As you guys know, Alice Cooper is my housegod, and this marks the 7th time I’d see him in concert, but I was still as excited as always. I must admit – I didn’t write down the setlist, so I don’t remember exactly what songs he played.

What I do remember however, is that he played “House of Fire”. And “He’s Back”. And I nearly died inside. I’ve always wanted to hear these two, but I can’t recall ever doing so. God damn it. Alice Cooper is this one artist that continuely delivers everything you’d ever want in a musician. All the time. I didn’t leave the gig unsatisfied, I just kind wished he had been the top headliner so I could have ENDED my festival with this epicness.

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And the fact that he invited Rob Zombie on stage for “School’s Out”… Anna and I joked about it on Rob when he covered “School’s Out” on his show that, maybe Alice won’t join him, but he might join Alice. And then he did. Ahh. Perfect.

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After this epic show all that was left to do was for us to hit the sack and prepare for Friday.

FRIDAY

This day started out fairly early for me, beginning with the National Day’s Celebration with Janne Schaffer. Janne is my childhood hero basically, both as a sologuitarist, but mostly for his part as Zebran in Electric Banana Band. And Electric Banana Band was exactly the first actual concert I began my day with.

So. I saw this band a few times when I was younger, obviously, and the show I watched the most as a kid on videotape was Trazan & Banarne, and I’m not sure if I’m willing to explain it upright to you guy who are not from Sweden, but it’s basically about Trazan, a tarzan alike man who lives with his monkeyfriend Banarne in a treehouse somewhere. Occasionally during the show they’d join their band Electric Banana Band and perform a song or two. Anyway.

It was really good to see them, and I was well surprised to realize how good they were. I mean, I shouldn’t have been, or perhaps I’m just surprised I enjoyed it as much as I did. It was sure one of the highlights of the whole festival for me, either way, I loved it.

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After Electric Banana Band I sat down infront of the stage, right in the middle of the burning sun and started reading Oscar Dronjak’s new book while awaiting TNT’s signing session. It was a bit of an odd feeling, you know, just sitting there, getting burned in the sun, but on the same time, it was magnificent. Reading a book written by one of your favorite musicians while hearing some obscure band in the background. And I got sooo caught up in it, hadn’t Hansi texted me I would probably have missed the session.

Which wouldn’t have been too bad. After waiting for 30 minutes, TNT decided to cancel their signing session. Thanks for that one. I was a bit stressed – I had a tight schedule. They were supposed to start 14.45, and I had planned to be out of the session by 15, and then have an hour to go to my car and change the camera battery before heading for Oscar’s signing session which would begin at 16. It doesn’t take more than 10-15 mins to walk to the car, and changing the battery perhaps 5 mins or so, but what I was worried about was getting back inside in case of queues. And why I couldn’t do it AFTER Oscars session was because TNT started their gig at 16.45. And I rather miss Oscars signing session than the concert.

So here I found myself at 15.15, hurrying like hell, but gladly, making it all in time. Well in time. The m&g with Oscar was short, which was good, because I always die a little inside of starstruckness so had it been longer… yeah… ambulance please?

Well well… after that, headed to the TNT stage only to realize it was almost 40 minutes left til showtime, so I sat down with my amazing book again and started reading… and reading… until I was interupted by a guy asking if he could take my picture because he found it so interesting that I was at Sweden Rock, reading. Hahaha, sure be my guest! Why not!

Oh well. After a little while, I met up with Hansi again and TNT started playing. They played the exact same set they did previously on Stockholm Rocks, but I do absolutely think they had a better energy this time around. Like they really enjoyed it. And thus, I enjoyed it far more. And again you know… Tony Harnell… Mmmmm. I love it.

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After TNT I had QUITE the gap until W.A.S.P was gonna play, so I took the oppurtunity to stroll around…. recordshops… again. This time I left with a “Shake City” CD, a band I’ve never ever heard of before. It was gonna be well exciting to hear! I love doing this thing, going into recordstores and randomly pick up CD’s of bands I’ve never heard of and then when I get home listen to it and just.. AHDLAJHDA!

But most importantly. I found the “To Beast or Not To Beast” vinyl. I hesitated a bit at first, but then I realized that Lordi is probably the only band I don’t have a vinyl of. So home with me it goes!

After picking up the little gem it was time to head for W.A.S.P. I came around about 15 mins or so before they were going on stage, so the crowd was pretty big. And with my new vinyl I wanted to avoid as much as drama as possible, so I stood as far away from the stage as possible without loosing sight of the band on stage (I can’t stand looking at big screens, doesn’t feel like you watch the show)

Well, what can I say? I did really enjoy the show. W.A.S.P put on a show only W.A.S.P do, and I really enjoyed from the moment it started to the moment everything just died. Yes. Literally. During “Blind in Texas” the whole soundequipment just died. And W.A.S.P walked off stage. Kinda wished they had at least said thanks and good night (taken a bow that is) because now they kind left us in uncertainy wheter or not they were coming back. But they didn’t… so…

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After this I went out and bought late night dinner for myself. The day had been pretty heavy due to dehydration, so yes, hate me if you must, but I did skip Black Sabbath due to illness. I was at the parkinglot, so I did HEAR the whole show, but I didn’t see it. Kill me if you like, but at some point, health comes first (Unless it’s Lordi. Lordi always comes before health)

SATURDAY

Last day of the festival. Mixed feeling as hell. You know, this is the type of festival you really don’t want to end anytime soon. I started my day with Danger Danger, which was one of the bands I actually went here to see. It had been four years since I last saw them, and this is one of these feel-good-bands I just love to death. The set they played was great, although, I was a bit worried when Ted Poley came out in the audience during “Don’t Walk Away”. Since he was heading in my direction. And this means people flooding. AAAAAH. My nightmare, basically. But all in all, loved the show. Amazing. I also managed to meet up with Sofia, Johanna and Angelina during this. Amazing!

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After Danger Danger I headed back to my car to drop off some luggage. To make it simpler on the day of take off, I decided to start pack a bit in advance. After I was done with this, I rushed back to the festival area to catch Powerwolf.

There was once a night, in the middle of October many years ago when my friend Thomas called from Belgium, asking me to help him get home. “I’m here, lost in Belgium in Powerwolf makeup. I wonder what people thinks“. That line kinda stuck with me, so here I found myself watching the band he’s spoken so fondly off.

And I was well surprised how good they were. They are that type of metal I like. Amazing. Yet another band to add to the list, I suppose!

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Camptime deluxe is what happened after Powerwolf, together with the awesome camp. It was somewhat heartbreaking knowing this was our last day together, but we were also pretty glad. Coming home to a bed and all you know. We decided to head back to the area for Necrophobic, which was perfect, because it was right before Billy Idol.

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Billy Idol… What can I say. I saw him a few years ago here at Sweden Rock, and I loved it already back then, and I loved it just as much this time. I don’t really have words for it, to be honest. Epicness, that’s what it was. And I was glad I got to end my festival with this.

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Actually. Not really. While I thought I had left the area for good, when I was doing my pre-packing and all during the evening… I started miss the place. And when Volbeat started playing I was just like… fuck this. I’m heading in again. One last show you know. So I put on my Perryhat and wrapped the Sweden Rock blanket around me and went in, without camera, without cellphone, without ANYTHING ut my blanket and car key. And watch one last show, before it was over for good.

Ah. I hate this feeling.

SUNDAY

The day for departure had arrived. We had decided beforehand that Anna was actually gonna ride home with me instead, so she wouldn’t be squeezed and I wouldn’t have to go completely alone. Everyone from our camp left one by one until it was only me and Anna left struggling with her tent. Hansi said he was gonna come by and say one last good bye before departure, and while waiting, or neighbours started getting a little… uh with us.

It’s all kinda hilarious. First they asked us if we had “gotten any” and then proceeded to ask if we wanted “some norwegian cock before leaving”. Anna got frustrated and yelled at them to go home and I wasn’t sure if I was gonna laugh or cry. And then I saw Hansi appear and I TELL YOU. I had to try REAL HARD not to actually say “Ah, sure thing! And he comes there!”. But to be honest, I wasn’t sure how Hansi would react if I did it, so I decided against it. But it would have been hilarious to see the faces of the neighbours if I had actually done it, haha.

After all was said and done… We went down to the car (with more and less struggle) and after packing in everything, in the trunk and in the backseat, gone to the bathroom one last time and all, we finally hit the road. Not really.

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We actually got stuck in QUITE the carqueue. And hilariously enough, there was a bus behind us. The speedlimit was 30, and we were pretty close to the car infront of us, and the line was barely moving, yet the bus driver kept horning us. And then he tried to drive around is in a refuge, I mean, what the hell? What were we gonna do, FLY? We actually saved the buscompany’s name, I’m still pondering to pay them a little visit….

Anyway. The road home was pleasant. We drove the wrong way once, panicked a bit in Värnamo but all in all, all was good. We had a good time listening to music, talking about EVERYTHING AND NOTHING and even doing some lyric-writing. All based on this Sweden Rock festival.

This festival was BEYOND epic. Thanks to EVERYBODY involved; Anna, Linn, My, Tyr, Jana, Sofia, Johanna, Hansi, Oliver. You are the best guys!

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// Sara
( I can’t be bothered to spellcheck this entry, just so you know)

 

 

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