Vicious Rock Festival, Trollhättan 8/7-17

Posted in Concerts, Music, Uncategorized with tags , , on July 8, 2017 by Sara Hammerzmith

On it again. It appears, there’s barely any rest for me what so ever when it comes to festivals. And honestly though, why would it be? And especially so when Lordi’s on the bill. We got to Trollhättan the day before in order to get there in time, get settled and basically get to relax. Sjorven was coming from Belgium, so it was either the day before or waay too late. It was a nice evening of dinner and catching up, and getting ready for the day to come. Oh by the way. I think I have officially had the smallest hotelroom yet. It was basically just a bed! Haha!

We were actually a bit lazy, which I always tend to be when I’m attending something where only one or two bands excite me. We got up fairly late, went to MAX for a change (at least for me) and had lunch / dinner before walking down to the area. Time optimist as I am, we of course did not get there an hour before Art Nation started, rather ten minutes. But hey – at least we weren’t late! That must count for something, no?

Art Nation

Art Nation bravely went on stage for the approximately 20 people that were in front of the stage. They opened, much like on Sweden Rock with “One Nation”, and quickly followed up with “Alive”.  The newest single “The Real Me” was next, and I was happy to see they did, despite the thin crowd, have quite a few fans, that knew the songs and such. I like that.

“Need You to Understand” and “Kiss Up & Kick Down” followed suite, and the band… Was doing good. You know, considering the circumstances. I can imagine it’s hard to really get anywhere when the crowd is… fairly small.

“Paralyzed” and “Don’t Wait for Salvation” was next, followed by “Start a Fire” until they finally wrapped up with “All In” and “Ghost Town”.

Given the circumstances, it was a very very good show. I still think some of the member might have to get a bit more comfortable in their own skin, but I reckon that comes with time.

After that, we planned to stay in front of the stage for the rest of the day, but pretty soon we figured that, yeah, we are not going to have to do that, so we wandered about the little place that was the festival area, checking out the practically non-existing merch and shopping booths. We did get some patches, though!

We lazily watched Chris Holmes and whatever band was really playing, and it wasn’t until after that (meaning it was just Sator and then Lordi) we claimed our spots at the barrier. And then the wait began… and then… You know.

Lordi

Sjorven is a first timer. He’s never ever seen Lordi before, not even being NEAR seeing Lordi before. So he’s a first timer. So I told him – you know it will start when “God of Thunder” starts. Much like “In The Army” with Sabaton. So imagine my confusion, when what started echoing from the speakers was in fact “SCGVIII: The Opening Scene”. I got dumbfounded and I was just like “what”. Wasn’t exactly prepared.

After Mana and NALLE (!) had gone on stage, Skeletor came out and “Let’s Go Slaugther He-Man” was set off. The crowd was pretty thick actually – I liked that. A lot. But sadly… Yeah. It is like it with Lordi, let me leave it at that. “The Riff” was next on the list, followed by, already as the third song, the song I was the most exicted about for the evening – “Demonarchy”.

Never in my life did I think I’d get to witness “Demonarchy” live, at least not like this. At least not this soon. I knew they spoke of some, potential, probable special show, but aside that, we all thought and felt that as far as the “Demonarchy” side goes, we are all screwed. But apparently not. And it was absolutely dreamy live. I love this song so much, do you understand? OX’s bassolo together with “Bite it Like a Bulldog” was next on the list, and then “It Snows In Hell / Children of the Night”. Upside down never gets old. Well at least not for me. I was a bit worried the guards wouldn’t let me do it, but we always manage to persuade them. One way or another.

“Hug You Hardcore” was next on the list, and then a bloody return of “Sincerely With Love”. Like, I really did not miss this song, and I remember I just turned to Sjorven shaking my head like “why is this back?” Oh well. If they like it! And then, the second surprise for the night.

“Sick Flick”.

I’m pretty sure this song was the most wished for song ever since like, “Icon of Dominance”, and finally they are doing! And it was absolutely amazing. “Nailed by the Hammer of Frankenstein” was next, this song I DID miss on the other hand, so good one. The set was then wrapped up by the big three, if you like – “Blood Red Sandman”, “Hard Rock Hallelujah” and “Devil is a Loser”. And of course, encores in the shape of “Who’s Your Daddy” and “Would you Love a Monsterman?”.

The monsters thanked for the evening, and walked off the stage. The show was really good, like really good. Hello, “Demonarchy”? And it was good to see Nalle in action. I guess you could say I “missed out” on him last time around, and even if I miss Hella, (where the hell is the women?!) it was really good to see him.

Thank you!

After the show, we lazily watched Niefelheim before buying popcorn and walking back home to the hotel.

Thank you, Lordi, again for a great show. I love you always. Thanks to Art Nation and Sjorven as well for the festival!

// Sara

The Final Journey

Posted in Uncategorized on July 3, 2017 by Sara Hammerzmith

So today was an interesting day. I’m changing cars, and because of this, I took BXW out on one last road trip before handing him over to my parents for new endavours. It was bittersweet as hell, since I really, truly, love this car. How much haven’t he and I got through?

As our final destination and roadtrip, I chose Rejmyre as destination. Mostly because this is the festival we didn’t make it to this year, as well as it being not too far away. So, with that said, I gathered all my favorite roadtrip CD’s and headed off.

The weather was interesting, but also perfect. Raining, sun, raining, sun – making sure we got everything out of it. I saw a lot of rainbows and at last… I made it to Rejmyre. And it was weird, I must admit to see the place without the festival going on, but I had a pleasant feeling going back there. The best festival on the planet, I’m telling you.

 

I wasn’t sure how to make it home though, as I on the long forest road noticed I didn’t have much gas left. Gladly, I found a small gasstation and could fill it up accordingly.

Around 22.30 at night we arrived home to the tunes of Accept’s “The Final Journey” as I, for the last time, exchange BXW to 236. So, the end of an era, and the birth of a new one. I’m sure 236 will do an equally good job, at least I so hope.

// Sara

 

June in Music

Posted in Music on July 1, 2017 by Sara Hammerzmith

Alright! It’s that time of the month again, where I go over the most played artists and such. So, let’s start with most played bands.

5. Art Nation

Art Nation, Sweden’s new stars I guess you could call them. You guys know I’ve been obsessed with this ban since I saw them at Skogsröjet a year ago, and since seeing them on Sweden Rock I’ve been really high on them. Seriously, they are like H.E.A.T – they can do no wrong.

4. Amaranthe

Good old favorites. I was really happy to see them on Tons of Rock again. I love this band – like, if I was ever in a metalband – this would be the one. No joke.

3. Delain

Long time no see with this band – I haven’t seen them since November last year, up until now when I saw them at Tons of Rock. Charlotte Wessels speaks my mind. I can’t… Like, it’s almost as if she saw into my head and took out all my feelings.

2. Alestorm

No surprise. “No Grave But the Sea” is really growing on me, or well, at least the For Dogs version. I can’t put my finger on why I find myself listening to specifically that version – I guess it’s soothing in a way.

1. Sabaton

No wonder that the Golden boys are on top, am I right? I wrote a couple of days ago about my love for this band, and I find it hard to put into words how much I love them, and how much they mean to me. But yes, the Carolus Rex show at Tons of Rock is probably a big reason they are number one.

Alright, let’s move onto Albums:

5. Carolus Rex – Sabaton

Very suspected. After all, prepping for the Carolus Show was real, you know? And this album… I’m not sure if it’s my favorite Sabaton album ever, however, it is the album I’m most proud of, if it makes sense?

4. Bringer of Pain – Battle Beast

Battle Beast’s newest album still holds on tight to the top, and it should – it’s a killer album.

3. Liberation – Art Nation

I guess I could use the same as above – This album is killer, and I’m just addicted.

2. Edge of Thorns – Savatage

It’s intersting of this album seem to always make the toplist, yet Savatage never makes the top bands. “Edge of Thorns” is my relax album. Like people would use Enya, I use Savatage. Isn’t it funny how certain bands just get certain positions?

1. No Grave But The Sea – Alestorm

It’s the dogs. I’m telling you.

And lastly, here’s the top ten songs of this month:

1. Take Me Home – Art Nation
2. Gott Mit Uns – Sabaton
3. The March To War – Sabaton
4. Lejonet Från Norden – Sabaton
5. As I Lay Me Down (Acoustic) – Wiktoria
6. Gates of Glory – Twilight Force
7. As I Lay Me Down – Wiktoria
8. By The Blood in Our Hearts – Running Wild
9. Rebels of Our Time – Majesty
10. Riders of the Dawn – Twilight Force

// Sara

Attero Dominatus – Sabaton the love story.

Posted in Music, Uncategorized with tags on June 29, 2017 by Sara Hammerzmith
Ten years ago, on this exact day, June 29, after further inspection, my life changed forever. This marks the exact day I became a Sabaton fan. The location was Borlänge, more to be exact – The Peace & Love festival. Jocke spoke of how it was ironic a festival called “Peace” was inviting Sweden’s only band who sung about war to play, and this was also the day I figured out they were Swedish, by the way.
While this may not have been the first time I experienced Sabaton live, it was the day I became a fan.
A few weeks later I found “Attero Dominatus” in a supermarket, and on that path – From that album, onwards to Monsters of Mora it all went down. My first show as a Sabaton fan, and it became a night to remember. Peace & Love 2008 – where I denied every single sign of Sabaton actually playing.
Over the years I’ve watched this band grow. A band I once saw in smaller clubs, as supportband for bands like Lordi and HammerFall, to now witnessing them headline festivals like Sweden Rock and Graspop Metal Meeting. Witnessing the very first Rockstad: Falun back in 2008.
Metallsvenskan 2009. What a moment. Watching Sabaton play football against other bands, and then wrapping up with a nice show… These moments, you know?
Last year I saw Sabaton be included in Eurovision Song Contests montage of Swedish music exports, and I will not deny that tears were shed. This is a band that means so truly much to me, I cannot even put into words how much I love this band, or how PROUD I am of them. PROUD to see them grow like this, and I feel blessed to have been a part of the journey.
This is a band I’d walk through fire for. This is a band I’ve traveled down to the very south of Malmö to watch, jump on a last minute plane to Luleå up in the North – I’ve seen them in and out of Sweden, and I’d walk a 1000 miles, ten times over for this band.
So far, I’ve seen this band 24 times. And trust me, there’s going to be many, many, many more. This band has become one of the most important things in my life, almost like the air I breathe.
Sabaton, I love you. Since June 29th 2007, and I’ll be always yours.
// Sara

Tons of Rock, Halden, Norway 24/6 – 17: Part 2

Posted in Concerts, Music, Uncategorized with tags , , , on June 25, 2017 by Sara Hammerzmith

After she left, I headed up toward the hill again to watch the sunset and wait for Amaranthe to start. Linn and My surprisingly joined me after a while, before it was time for me to head down to the tent again.

Amaranthe

The tent was PACKED. Like, I know Amaranthe has had a lot of success, but this was crazy. I wasn’t really expecting to have the Delain kind of treatment, but perhaps Amaranthe should be on the mainstage the next time? I think so.

Right on time the intro started echoing in the speakers and they opened with “Maximize”. And of course, from the instant, my eyes are glued to Nils. I promise, I’m not a crazed fangirl, it’s just that, it’s so odd to see him perform on stage. You know he’s my favorite singer ever, so knowing I’ll be seeing him on a regular basis now is a weird thought.

“Boomerang” followed suite, and the band seemed to have a pretty good night! The energy from the crowd was… okay. I guess. I mean, I’ve seen better. Perhaps I should stop comparing nordic crowds to French or German, as they are always much more my cup of tea, but still. Better than at Delain, I guess that is something?

“Hunger” followed suit, and I’m not sure if I’ve ever mentioned it, but this went from being a song I really did not like with them, to one of my favorites. It’s something special about all of a sudden realizing that yeah, it’s not so good on the album, but then you realize what kind of a headbanging song it is, and you instantly fall in love.

“1.000.000 Lightyears” and “Fury” was the next songs on the list, and “Fury” you know… you can’t get enough from that song. Really. “On The Rocks” followed, my personal favorite off “Maximalism”, “The Nexus” was ripped off before it was time for some sing along or karaoke, or whatever you wanna call it with Elize for “Amaranthine”.

“Call Out My Name”, “Digital World” and “That Song” was fired off as the set left for it’s finale and they wrapped up the entire thing with “Drop Dead Cynical”.

It wasn’t exactly the best show I’ve ever seen with them, but it is also far from the worst. Perhaps I have simply seen them too much. I don’t know. I wasn’t a huge fan of “Maximalism” either so maybe it’s just this entire era. Huh.

Right after the show, I headed off to the bathrooms and then over to Sabatons stage. For arriving like ten minutes before it was about to start,  I got some really good spots. Good visually, and I had a lot of space. My hair is a bit like a windmill, so, I kind of need it.

Sabaton

But, lets talk about something for a quick second here. The beauty of the stage I was seeing in front of me. I knew this was a special show – the Carolus Rex kind of special show, Swedish Empire and all of that, but I didn’t think so much about it until I got to the stage and saw it. The three crowns banner that clad Audie, the Swedish banners place here and there, and not to talk about the throne Carolus was about to sit upon later in the show. That’s when it REALLY hit me – this is going to special. And beyond epic.

And it started already at the intro. Instead of the usual “The March To War”, “Dominium Maris Baltici” served as the intro instead. It was a little… odd, because the intro was as quiet here as it is on the album, making it a little awkward. Probably some setting or so, but I guess I shouldn’t be complaining, considering that once Hannes and the rest of the boys were on stage – “Lejonet Från Norden” was the first song to be performed. All this time, I waited for this! For not having “Ghost Division” as the opener!

It was followed by Jocke talking a little bit, the only apparently he was allowed to talk during this special set, as they continued onwards with “Gott Mit Uns”. The energy from the crowd was pretty good. COULD be better, but hey, better than Graspop so I’m shutting up. “En Livstid i Krig” followed suit, and at this time at the show, it still felt like any other Sabaton show. It was first when the next song, “1648” started as it dawned upon me that no, this is not like any other Sabaton show.

“Karolinens Bön” was next, and as I had suspected a bit due to seeing the special show from Rockstad: Falun in a live stream, the caroleans marched onto the stage and took position during this song. Could this show get any better?

Sure it could, because in “Carolus Rex” Carolus himself comes on stage, we witness his coronation and he sits upon his throne. Like, very literally to the song, but oh my god. This is the Sabaton show of my dreams! “Ett Slag Färgat Rött” followed suit, and then “Poltava”.

After “Poltava”, the caroleans exited the stage and Carolus walked down toward the front in order to, well, look out over his land I guess. And that’s when it happened. A pyro shot off as a bullet that has been fired from a gun, and Carolus fell to the ground. “Konungens Likfärd” was the song the band played next, obviously, and the Caroleans came on stage and carried the fallen king out, “back to Sweden” so to put it.

Just as last time, “Ruina Imperii” was in fact not performed live, it simply served as an outro, and as back in Falun, the Caroleans fired off their weapons after the show, and then left the stage for good, for now.

I honestly thought the show was going to be over now, so mind my surprise when the WWII intro started on the screen, with the apropriate pyro and “Primo Victoria” started echoing. At least the crowd woke up a little bit by now, haha!

“Sparta” was next on the list, sadly not with all the theatrics, but if it’s festivals it is festivals I guess – “Swedish Pagans”, of course, because apparently you can never have a show with out this one – “Shiroyama”, “Winged Hussars” and “To Hell and Back” wrapped up the set before it was over.

Jocke asked the Caroleans back out on stage and introduced everyone, including “The Norwegian that shot him” haha. I love this band.

With that said, the show was over and everyone left the stage. And I was just standing there like, what the hell did I just witness. What did I just have the privilige to witness? I have no idea. I headed up toward the stage, and I was very very lucky to get a setlist from a very very kind crew member. I like setlists, but this setlist means so much to me because it was THIS show, you know?

After this, I headed out of the area, to fix the cashless card and pick up Linn, and then we went home right after.

Seriously, this day was so worth it. For Sabaton alone, but I also thank Delain and Amaranthe, Angelina, Linn and My for making it even better! Thank you all!

// Sara

 

Tons of Rock, Halden, Norway 24/6 – 17: Part 1

Posted in Concerts, Music, Uncategorized with tags , , on June 24, 2017 by Sara Hammerzmith

So! It was the D-Day. I kind of decided of this festival very last minute. I thought about it for the longest of time, in fact, planned it for the longest of time but never got around to actually do anything about it – story of my life, if you like. You see, at this very festival, Tons of Rock, Sabaton was set to do their own very very special Carolus Rex set – and it was set to be even more special thinking about the fact that this is the very spot that Carolus was actually assassinated at. How amazing? Very amazing, if you ask me. But, the line up of the festival as a whole wasn’t very exciting, and I was lucky to see that the two other bands I desperately wanted to see did in fact play the exact same day as Sabaton. What a time to be alive.

Halden, however, isn’t very far from where I personally life, which makes about everything so much easier as I could simply hop in my car, drive there, and then drive home after the show. How convenient, huh? And it was a real nice drive. Nice weather, not a lot of traffic, easy roads until you get to Norway – Norway is kind of fucked up like that (unnskyld Hansi!). But gladly, I made it there. Once at Fredriksten, I was very happy to see it was good signs and easy to get around – I usually get very very anxious when I’m supposed to park, but it worked fine this time. Sort of anyone. Either way – I arrived about an hour and a half before Delain was set to start, which is a new good record for me – I tend to always end up a bit late, as you probably learned by now… So I’m proud of myself!

I wasn’t sure how to navigate at this place, but I figured I’d walk toward the magnificent fortress and by the camping and follow people and hope for the best. Halfway up the hill I feel someone coming from behind and it turns out it was Linn! I had almost forgotten she and her sister were there, so it was great to see her. She helped me find where to get my wristband and then we stood and chatted for a long time before I had to get inside in order not to miss Delain! It wasn’t a massive line, which made me very happy as it was easy to get in.

And this festival, the festival ground, is beautiful. It has a massive hill in the middle of it, and is right next to the fortress, or I should say, incorporated with it in fact. So beautiful, and so small actually! Delain was playing inside the tent, so I went there about 15 minutes before the show was about to start and I was glad to see I could in fact get to the front. Happy days!

Delain

Right on time – seriously, I love these bands that are on time. I remember so many years ago when I always had to complain about bands getting on stage way too late. But not anymore! Perhaps it’s because I changed musictaste? Who knows.

“The Monarch” started running as the intro, and the bandmembers sans Charlotte entered the stage and they started the show off with “Hands of Gold”. Charlotte came on stage with her new bright hair, and a beautiful black body with simple jeans. Seriously, this woman is a style icon. I will not deny that. I envied her look on the last tour, and even still now.

“Suckerpunch” was next song on the list, I’ve really grown to love this song, I will not deny that. “Get The Devil Out of Me” followed… And you know, the band was really good. They seemed to lack a little bit of energy, but I think I sort of have to blame that on a very very meh crowd. But they still killed it, believe me.

The very lovely, and beautiful “The Hurricane” – I guess you remember how much I actually love this song, I can’t… I can’t with Charlottes words you know. She knows exactly how to put my feelings into words. It’s like she reads my mind. “Fire with Fire” followed suit, and then “Mother Machine” and “Don’t Let Go” before they wrapped the entire set up with “We Are The Others”.

The band thanked for themselves, and walked off the stage. It was a good start on the day – and I guess this band isn’t all that big up here after all, seeing the small crowd and pretty meh crowd that showed up, but it’ll get better. The set was a bit short – but it was still good. Thank you Delain!

After this, I had pretty much no bands I wanted to see until Amaranthe which was set to perform right before Sabaton, so I strolled around a bit. At first I climbed the entire hill watching out over the festival and watching Airbourne on a distance. It was magnificent. This whole scenic place was just… beyond me. And then, I headed off to the merch instantly to pick up a Delain shirt – a lovely 3/4 sleeved shirt as well as a festival shirt – you know it’s mandatory. I met up with Linn and My who were watching Airbourne at the time, and spent the rest of the gig with them.

After the show was over, I stayed around for a while to catch up with Angelina, a good friend of mine I haven’t seen in ages. We proceeded to get something to eat, once she’d gotten down from the high – the high you get from watching your favorite band perform live. I know exactly the feeling, because that is me after every single Sabaton show. We went up the hill, sat down for hours and hours of talking and catching up about everything and nothing, and it was so good to see her again. We went down to the merch to catch up on a shirt for her from Airbourne, looked through the other stalls until it was time for her to leave. She’d only come here for Airbourne, so she wasn’t staying long.

We said our good byes, and she left.

TO BE CONTINUED

// Sara

Graspop Metal Meeting Day 3 – Sunday

Posted in Concerts, Music, Uncategorized with tags , on June 18, 2017 by Sara Hammerzmith

So today was the day. The last day of Graspop, and it was also the day for the highlight of the festival for me: Sabaton. But first, I had to get through the day, which was easier said than done when you wake up in a motherfucking sauna. So, I was planning to get down to Alestorm alreadt at 11, but I think I made it there around 12.30 or so? I mean, better late than never.

Once at the crowd, I rejoiced with Stephen, Jonathan and Dieter, and I was also introduced to some new friends of theirs. Never before have I heard someone introduce themselves with saying “My name is like the little girl on the island with her dog”. You know, Astrid Lindgren’s character Tjorven. If you are familiar. But this one spells with an S. Well, that’s one for the books right?

After this, the small wait for Alestorm began, which was basic torture. The temperature was hitting 30 degrees, and the sun was up right over us. I told myself that everything would be alright once Alestorm starts, as music has a tendency to actually make you forget everything… and then… it started.

Alestorm

After the intro, the band started off the show with “Keelhauled”. The audience kind of exploded, which was good to see, but to be frank… the energy didn’t really stay for long. Which I can understand – I even found myself not really being able to jump and headbang as much as I wanted to. “Alestorm” was the next song on the list, followed by “Magnetic North”. And seriously…

Like the band was really good. But I felt myself just kind of losing it… it was seriously just too much. The heat was too much. I felt myself WANTING to headbang but being unable to. Because of the heat. “Shipwrecked” and “Mexico” was next on the list, followed by “Th’ Sunk’n Norwegian” – or as Stephen and I have dubbed it – “The toilets at Graspop”. Because why not.

“Drunk” was next on the list, followed by my personal favorite “Fucked With An Anchor”, and then “Hungover” and wrapping it all up with “Captain Morgan’s Revenge”.

With that done, the band thanked for the day and left the stage. The show was amazeballs as usual – it’s Alestorm for gods sake, but I’m sure it would have been… more enjoyable if it wasn’t for the damned heat.

After this, Sjorven and I stumbled toward the fence and the front row to secure our spots for Sabaton. Yes, I was really willing to spend all day there. Because Sabaton. As we sat there, Steel Panther started on the opposite stage, and I watched it as good as I could

Steel Panther

So, on the stage my boys went and they opened up with “Eyes of a Panther” and quickly followed it with “Goin’ in the Backdoor”. Well, to be frank I wasn’t seeing a whole lot as I remained on my side of the stages, but I was happy to see Michael come over to our side once in a while!

The crowd response was amazing though. That I can admit. “Just Like Tiger Woods” was the next song, followed by “Death to all but Metal”. They slowed things down a bit, “That’s When You Came In”, and honestly – I’ve come to really really love this song. I won’t deny that. It’s so nice.

“Poontang Boomerang” was next on the list, and then “Community Property” with the proper sing along to. They brought up 17 girls on stage for “17 Girls” before wrapping the set up with “Party All Day”. The set was a lot shorter than a Sweden Rock, I’m personally missing “Fat Girl” for instance, but it was a good set.

The only critique I really have is the jokes. It’s obviously the same jokes, but they might wanna look into it a little bit, seeing they said “Opening for Aerosmith, we met Steven Tyler”. And Aerosmith wasn’t even playing Graspop. At least make it a little believable, right? Aside that, good and energetic set. But what else to expect?

After this, I headed off to a signing session with Alestorm while Hatebreed was playing our stage, and got back in good time for it to end. Thanks to the stranger keeping my spot!

Mastodon

So, after being at the signingsession and all that – Mastodon started. It was a nice set… I guess. To be honest… I was really gone. I actually had to sit down at the front row, with Sjorven, Stephen and Jonathan bringing and pouring water on me. It was.. an experience I shall say, I spent the first 30 minutes of the show just standing trying to focus on one thing. I either the rhythm of the music or my body. But after a while I just gave up and sat down. I felt my legs weaken, and it was a good thing. I saved myself from a lot.

I looked a bit at the band through the holes in the fence, and I did enjoy the show despite never being much of a fan.

After this, I laid down in Sjorvens knee to rest a bit properly before the next band – which was going to be Rob Zombie. And I was really excited for Rob Zombie, not gonna lie. It was nice lying down and listening to Evanescence. By the way, I want to direct a large thank you to all the people, all the strangers, that brought us waterbottles throughout the day. So nice of you. I love you.

Rob Zombie

I’ve only seen Rob Zombie once before, at Sweden Rock, which was the show I discovered him on. So I was happy, even though it was hard – he played at the same time as Gotthard, which sort of killed me. Like a lot.

But despite that, I’m happy that I stayed for Rob Zombie. I really enjoyed the show, and John 5 is simply eyecandy. We even got his towel, in fact. Thank you, Sjorven!

After this… the eager wait for Sabaton began. Lazily listening to Scorpions which played the other stage, and the crowd started to gather. Once the sun went down by the way, the temperature shrank.

Once Scorpions was over… It started. “In The Army Now” echoed through the air and then followed by “The March To War”…

Sabaton

And they hit it off with “Ghost Division”. Is anyone here shocked? I was however, taken aback by the second song of the setlist – “The Art of War”. How long has it been since I heard this one? Probably last year, but it feels like an eternity.

“Blood of Bannockburn” was next on the list, followed, surprisingly, by “Attero Dominatus”, and then, as you know, my personal favorite “The Last Stand”. I can honestly not get enough of this song. At all. Whatsoever. I felt that the crowdparticipation, at least where I was standing, wasn’t that great to be honest. I’d expect more from Belgium, but oh well.

Another beautiful and welcome surprise, “Panzerkampf” was next on the setlist, quickly followed by “Sparta” sans the spartans. Still an epic live track though, mind you that. “Screaming Eagles” was next on the list, followed by of course, the greatest moment of the show “Carolus Rex”.

Seriously, I don’t even know what it is and why it is, but “Carolus Rex”, or any song of the “Carolus Rex” album just… It simply is the best moment. Really.

Another not so great moment followed in “Swedish Pagans”. I hope one day we will not be tortured with this song. Anymore. “Diary of an Unknown Soldier” soon cut it off and we got to embrace the beauty that is “The Lost Battalion”.

So ok. “Resist And Bite” was the next song on the setlist, and I was expecting to get something here. But no. Nothing. I mean, if you see the Swedish crowd during the “Carolus Rex” songs, you will notice the kind of pride that goes into it. It was lacking that, like, big time, on Graspop for “Resist and Bite”. Come on people.

“Winged Hussars” and “Nightwitches” wrapped up the set. The storming of Normandie started, followed by “Primo Victoria”. “Shiroyama” and “To Hell and Back” wrapped up this amazing set. The band thanked for themselves, and left the stage.

We retreated a big to the back to watch the last fireworks ending this years Graspop before I collaposed on a grasspot trying to grasp time and space again. It happens when I see a band I really love – like Sabaton or Lordi that I lose grip of time and space and I need to “come down” from the high, so to speak.

Sjorven and I spent the rest of the night, frankly running around the festivalsite and talking about music and pretty much everything before deciding to go to bed. At you know, 5 am. And I was getting up at 7. How awesome, huh?

// Sara