Archive for art nation

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

Sweden Rock Festival: Day 1 – Wednesday

Posted in Music, Uncategorized with tags , , on June 7, 2017 by Sara Hammerzmith

So finally. The most wonderful time of the year is about to start. Finally, it is what we call, time to go home. I was going rather late this year – last year, I went up already on Monday, and this year, not until Wednesday. The original plan did though include me going up already on Tuesday in fact, but life happens.

I went on a bit of a deadline seeing Art Nation, one of the bands I pretty much came here to see was performing somewhat early. Not super early, but early enough to stress me. After a few ifs and buts, I finally made it onto the road and blasted some old mix-CD’s I made when I was younger. Seriously, I made them like six or seven years ago, and I still love them today. I guess it’s because it reminds me of old songs, don’t you think?

I was on a pretty good time schedule. It wasn’t perfect – I was set to arrive about an hour or so before Art Nation was about to go on stage, but it could most deffo be worse. I had the oppurtunity to stop by a beautiful stop-place, and I really need to try to make it a thing to stop here. Maybe use a disposable grill?

At 16.50 I had finally parked and gotten out of my car, and said good bye to the little bug that kept me company in the car for the last hour. It was a bit too heavy for him to crawl out, so he held on tight. I went to exchange my ticket first thing, where I met up with Sofia, Johanna and Malin. Sooner than expected, would you know! Already at 17.15 we had our bracelets, yellow and blue, which felt ironic to me considering “The Lion From The North” has been one of my most played songs on a daily basis.

Art Nation

But! With that said, we made it in, we made it to Art Nations stage and I was stoked, beyond stoked to get to see them for the first time as a fan. I saw them, as you guys might know, at Skogsröjet last year and I fell in love with them on an instant.

They opened their set with “One Nation” which for me, seemed to be quite odd for an opener, I had expected it to be something more you know… up beat? The song was quickly followed by “I’m Alive”. The first single of the album, “The Real Me” was next on the list, and I was happily surprised to discover how much heavier it is live! I loved it. I was followed by what I personally thought would be the opener, “Need You To Understand”.

The band was pretty energetic, but I felt that some, or may I say, most of the memebers, seemed to be a bit nervours or holding back a bit. But Alexander was slaying it. The crowd was… so so I’d say. Probably die hards at the front, but that’s about it.

“Kiss up and Kick Down” was next, and I really love this one. I can’t really put my finger on it, but I just do. “Paralyzed” was next on the list, followed by “Don’t Wait for Salvation”. Alexander spoke of how important it is to enjoy yourself, to dance, to have fun. And for this, they used “Start a Fire”… and you know… I like the song, not gonna lie, but on the same time this choice surprised me. It’s not a that fun of a song, in all honest. “All In” was next on the list, before they wrapped the whole set up with “Ghost Town”.

It was such a good show. It was so good seeing them again, and like this, and seeing a band being on the rise. It makes me happy. Til next time!

After this, I went back to my car to have dinner and to set up my tent at the camping. The weather here is pretty shitty not gonna lie – it’s been a bit small rain, but fuck. After getting some help from Sofia to get up some of my stuff, I joined them in their tent for some hanging out before going to see Grave Digger. In the POURING RAIN. Like, waterfall kind of pouring.

Grave Digger

I must admit, I have never really listened to this band, but I was intrigued to see them. They had quite the crowd, and they delievered a really, really good set. I enjoyed every minute of it, despite being caught in the rain from hell. Really cool to see Axel Ritt in action as well!

After Grave Digger was done, I hit up some of the recordstores to check out the supply. I was looking for “No Grave But The Sea”, but didn’t find the edition I wanted. I was so disappointd it’s almost patethic, but hey. What can I say?

I did managed to find some things to. The second Powerwolf box – “History of Heresy” and Sabaton’s “The Swedish Empire Live”, DVD the latter. It was a nice find, and a small start. I need to get the money to my bank, but I have my eyes on a lot of things…

Now, I’m sitting here in the car hoping the rain will calm down eventually so I can go back to the camping and cuddle down in my tent. As if, right?

// Sara

Art Nation – Liberation

Posted in CDs, Music, Uncategorized with tags , on May 15, 2017 by Sara Hammerzmith

So, Gothenburg based Art Nation is back with their second album, following up the smashing debut that was “Revolution”. I have personally been waiting for this album forever, or well, it feels like it for sure. But you know what they say – good comes to those who wait. So I had to wait, patiently. But finally – at the end of April – I even managed to do the rookiemistake of misjudging the date – it arrived. The precious little album.

The album opens up with the latest single and musicvideo “Ghost Town”, which follows the exact same vein as the previous album, but it’s the second track of the album – “Maniac” – that really catches my interest at first. The rhythm of the song, the energetic chorus… I’m just loving it. The rest of the album follows the same vein – it’s melodic, it has a lot of rhythm, big arrangement and catchy tunes, mixed with a beautiful balled and a couple of heavier, or perhaps more aggressive songs.

But – let me put it this way. This album is basically a rear window, or a blast from the past. While the material may be a step forward for the band themselves, this album is like a lovestory straight out of the 80’s. Lita Ford meets Danger Danger with a taste of Mötley Crüe. There were some songs, “What Do You Want” that I honestly thought is basically the child of “Kiss Me Deadly” and “Rock America” by the two first mentioned bands. A real, nice, blast from the past in the shape of new talents.

 

I think the album is pretty good. It took a while for me, I will admit, to really fall for the album, and I sadly think it’s a tad bit weaker than the previous one – in this sense because it has more songs I skip, but on the other hand, the songs I like, are really good and really strong, so I guess it makes up for it – which makes it a bit hard to rate. But I would still recommend it, highly.

Favorite song: Take Me Home
Least Favorite song: One Nation
Dance-friendliness:  7/11
Headbang-friendliness:  4/ 11
Crowd-friendliness: 7/11

// Sara

My month in Music

Posted in Music, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on February 27, 2017 by Sara Hammerzmith

So! It’s not really the end of the month just yet, but as I’m off to Helsinki tomorrow to watch the incredible Epica, I will have to give you this little update right now. Essentially, what I’ll be doing is collecting my data from LastFM and speak a little bit about the top six bands at the moment, that I’ve listened to the most this past month.

6. Danse dE Sade

So this is a new discovery – at least in a way. This band, together with Tower Guard, were the only of Lordi’s supportbands I did listen to one or two songs prior to the shows, but this band was the only one I remembered at the time (sorry Tower Guard).

Probably because as with most bands  I’ve grown to be fond of- they intrigued me. During our stay in L.A. we saw them twice – first supporting Lordi on their show at the Whisky, which was something I will never, ever forget. Honestly. What a band! What a show! We saw them two days later again at the Viper Room, and enjoyed it just as much this time around.

5. Art Nation

No surprise. Art Nation was a band I first thought “hey lets check them out” at Skogsröjet, and have now rapidly grown into being one of my favorite bands. I am beyond excited for their new album “Liberation”, as their previous one “Revolution” just as with H.E.A.T’s albums, is nothing but pure perfection. They recently released the new single “The Real Me” and I’m addicted to it.

4. Amaranthe

I don’t think I give this band enough credit toward myself on how much I enjoy their music. I must admit I was a little bit disappointed in “Maximalism” as it felt far away from what I’ve gotten to know as Amaranthe, and it felt sloppy – the lyrics weren’t what they once were, and as well as singing style. But then again, it’s hard to follow up a masterpiece like “MASSIVE ADDICTIVE”.

3. Lordi

They need no further introduction. I’m a little personally surprised they are behind Powerwolf, seeing we saw Lordi live this month (ok, we did see Powerwolf as well but) but it was only by three songs, so I can survive.

2. Powerwolf

Doesn’t surprise me too much. This is one of those bands whose album I’ll put on when I need something to listen to, be it in the background or just to enjoy myself. It’s something about the music with this band that drags you in – for every time you see this band, you fall more in love with them. It’s a dangerous thing.

1 . Crystal Viper

This is a bit of a surprise. Crystal Viper recently released a new album, the comeback album if you like just days ago, and it appears I liked it more than I thought seeing the numbers. They have twice the amount of plays compared to Powerwolf, would say something.

So. That sums up my month in music. It is interesting to see where your listening patterns actually are. Huh.

// Sara

 

 

The Real Me

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

So! Seriously, I’ve been waiting for this day to come for ages. It was some time ago, probably over a month ago, that Art Nation teased their first single of their upcoming album “Liberation”. And since that day, I’ve been waiting for the song to be released so badly, and finally, FINALLY – it is here. I found myself the other thinking “Damn, it’ s along time left” only to realize it was just days left. And here it is!

(I hope it works – else here is the Spotify link)

So. What do we think about this song? IT. IS. SO. AWESOME.

Seriously, the song did not disappoint. It’s a bit rawer, faster if you like, than what we are used to from “Revolution”, but the raw verses eventually emerges into an amazingly energetic chorus that fills you with the right kind of energy, leaving you no choice but to jump around the room. And the lyrics… Well, seems like very typical Art Nation lyrics if you judge the first album, but also really great.

God. If the album is only half as good as this song, I’ll love this new album. I really hope it won’t disappoint the way Amaranthe’s new album did.

I’m addicted. I can’t stop listening to this.

// Sara

The Real Me

Posted in Music, Uncategorized with tags , , on January 17, 2017 by Sara Hammerzmith

Okay, so, it is sort of funny that I’d write about Art Nation yesterday, because today they finally revealed the artwork as well as a teaser from an upcoming single! And seriously…

HERE IS A LINK TO THEIR FACEBOOK, so you can listen yourself.

Okay, so , this is a teaser from their first single “The Real Me” which will be released on February 24th. And I don’t think I’ve been more excited for a single release as I am for this one! Seriously, that little teaser, I couldn’t contain myself!

I’m always worried when I find a band that in my eyes are perfect, that their next album may not be as good as the first one, or as you’d have hoped seeing the first was so good, and I had my biggest concerns with Art Nation. Not that I don’t think they’d be capable, because I know they would be, but what if they changed direction? Or did something completely different and new without even a touch of their old material?

But no. This song is very true to “their” sound if I may call it so, and not only that, but it also gives me pure eargasm as it has everything that I want – Alexanders amazing vocalwork, uptempo fun rhythms and of course a big chunk of that keyboards that I love so dearly. I love the melody work in what I assume was the start of the chorus, and again the vocal work… I love the way it’s been arranged, at least from this little teaser I heard. I hope the full song is as good, or perhaps better, than this.

I cannot get enough of this teaser, and even though I don’t like when time passes by too quickly, February 24th couldn’t come sooner now.

// Sara

Art Nation – Revolution

Posted in CDs, Music, Uncategorized with tags , on January 16, 2017 by Sara Hammerzmith

So, there’s an album that I’ve found myself listening to non stop these past weeks, or perhaps I should say even months. I’ve tried so many times to change the album, or to tell myself that “I need to listen to something else”, but I always find myself going back to this one album. It’s the album I picked up from one of the “smaller” bands playing Skogsröjet; Art Nation’s “Revolution”.

I discovered the band through Skogsröjet really – I was listening through some of their stuff before going to the festival, in order to determine if I wanted to see them or not, and by that I decided to go see them. I enjoyed the show very so much, and picked up on their album. What I did know, is how utterly obsessed I’d become with the album.

To put it very shortly and simply, this album is nothing but pure perfection. It opens up with a strong, yet subtle song that grows in intensity as the song goes on, with the perfect break down – “Need You To Understand”, and the album continues in the vein of this album – pure 80’s inspired kind of hardrock music, and not a single one of the songs are bad, like, upbeat yet heavy lyrically “3000 Beats”, “Moving on” and “Here I am” for the melodic and intense parts, party tunes like “All The Way” and not to mention acoustic ballad “Look To the Sky”.

Alexander’s voice. He has an enchanting and powerful voice, and he performs his parts with such an intensity – raw energy in the more upbeat songs, emotion-filled parts with a hint of almost crying in some parts, creating a more intense listening experience, allowing you really FEEL something rather than just listening to someone perform a piece of lyric written infront of him.

Most of you probably know that I don’t actually listen to this kind of music a lot anymore – sure, the bands I started listening to are still there, but I rarely get into new bands in this genre, but I’ve found that these kind of bands – Art Nation and H.E.A.T, they have a tendency to always make flawless and perfect albums. No transportation tracks, no weaker tracks, just pure magic all through.

I just had to get this out of my system. I am beyond excited about their second album coming this year, and not to mention, seeing them at Sweden Rock. I got so excited seeing they got announced I completely missed out on ARTCH being announced. That says something, huh?

artnaton

I cannot wait for more material from these boys.

// Sara