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at METALFEST OPEN AIR HELVETIA
AT Z-7, in Pratteln (CH)
Live report ( photos and review) by dalia di giacomo
click on the photos to enlarge them.
This is not Kataklysm, this the Stephane show, you know...
The running order has been perfectly respected. Kataklysm began to play at 20:30 in Pratteln, at The METALFEST OPEN AIR HELVETIA, which is one of the countries interested by this event. (In Switzerland has taken the place of the good old Metal Dayz...(sob sob). Kataklysm plays outdoor (and not indoor as they did at the Metal Dayz) and , above all, far from being near to the headliners. After Kataklysm other 2 bands should play before Amorphis and exactly: Watain and the formidable Sabaton. I should come to the conclusion that Kataklysm are less important than Sabaton, shouldn't i? Before the gig, the drumming check has been so boring that sometimes, even in the middle of a Metal meeting you can realize what tedium is. The crowd was no chanting the name of the band before the band's arrival. And when the band arrives dark doesnt fall because there is still sunlight and only at the end of the concert light games and (too) much smoke got the possibility to give to the stage some infernal look. When the band hits the stage after a martial intro, the audience is anyway promptly compact , numerously gathered and supporting.
During the first 3 songs Kataklysm starts with plenty of energy but without performing anything truly particular. You know..this is the moment when we journos catch the target...I mean, the show has become much better, with more pressure, with much more interaction with the audience after the first crucial 3 songs. This shouldn't be. However, as a fan, i am delighted to report that the sound was truly powerful and well mixed, and the double bass pedal beats could balance the guitar and bass sound, or viceversa. Maurizio Iacono's vocals have been superb, between growl and scream. Those drum patterns known as "Northern Hyperblast" didn't erupt massively in foreground. In foreground have always been the guitars, after all.It was one of the best experiences live with Kataklysm concerning sound. By the way scream.. frontman Iacono invited the crowd to scream and greeted and shouted "Switzerland" countless times , maybe too many. Countless times the crowd raised arms and molded hands into horns. Croud sufings have been sporadical and short and so were moshing. On the contrary, headbanging was massive near the barricade. The chanting "Hey, hey, hey" happened often during the 60 minutes set, or better said 65 minutes. Enthusiasm was great enough, with great vibes. But i presume that as soon as the band finished the show, all the interest vanished itself.
Unfortunately Kataklysm didn't brutalize enough in spite of the mighty sound wave, even because Maurizio got a couple of moments in which had to face and solve situations with humour, but right this fact broke in a certain measure the "battle ground" effect. One of these moments happened after The road of Devastation and before the last song was played: the band had to stop and do a small intermezzo where a bunch of free rock notes were played and in which Maurizio says to the crowd "..you should stop drinking my friend! but ok ..tomorrow you will be fine (laughing with the audience)- followed by: ...this is not Kataklysm, this the Stephane show, you know..." , Stephane indeed was incredibly good mooded and very interactive with the crowd, trying to be near to the fans and mastering an only apparently routine-situation. So compliments to Stephan for being there and acting for the fans. Anyway, no matter what happened near the barricades towards the end of the show (i left photopit and barricades in order to hear the sound among the last rows)... whatever... it ended up to be nothing but inopportune moment of catharsis that forced Maurizio to exclaim " ...Ok, back to business, we are on a mission and the mission is TO PUSH THE F*CKING VENOM!" Obviously Push The Venom was played then. Push The Venom was performed in an implacable way, anyway the end of the concert was reached . Maurizio said that the concert was supposed to end now but that Kataklysm was asked to play a bit longer so another song can be presented. Practically a kind of encore, a bonus which attracted almost everybody. Therefore the concert ended 5 minutes later (21.35) and the song in question was Like Angels Weeping (the dark) in which a cool guitar solo had tthe possibility to tower above the rhythmic.
What happened before the end of the gig? Most of the concert of course. A good show, with an incredible faceripping sound, although the setlist could have been even more surprising: After all the songs were quite predictable: for example the opener song of the latest album (Heaven's Venom) and precisely A Soulless God was the opener of the gig, quite banal ... The intro was too short and the band began to play too abruptely without caring too much about refining some "presentation" details.
"Switzerland, are you ready? Are you ready to take the world by storm?" The Canadians annouced this way the track Taking The World by Storm from album "Prevail". Another song that impacted extremely well (predictable thing) was In Shadows and Dust whose lyrics are known perfectly by each devotee, an unforgettable trademark of the band. At The Edge Of The World was also performed , Maurizio was putting in all possible anger in the first lyrics of this track "Hey you fucking liar, you're full of shit, you got me standing at the edge of the world..."
As I Slither and Manipulator Of Souls caused the peak of the concert, sign that most bands still have to go back to their best oldies if they want to arise the best enthusiasm...naturally Kataklysm too after 20 years activity (which was mentioned by Maurizio) and after memorable albums as "Shadows & Dust" or "Serenity In Fire". However i adored the presence of tracks from the album "In The Arms of Devastation" like To Reign Again and The Road To Devastation, although both were performed too gymnic and not evilly emotional .
Magnificent has been Numb & Intoxicated!!! A great live song, plaing this the band had the opportunity to show many technical skills.. I am on the contrary sicked and tired by the constant presence of Crippled & Broken. The beautiful but quite disharmonic and difficult Determined was played with success , it was one of the most intense moments which should have been spared for the end of the show. And my Metalfest ends here.
written by dalia di giacomo
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