Quarter Life Crisis

The world according to Sven-S. Porst

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eurosonic 2

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The first day of a festival must be followed by a second and thus it was at the eurosonic festival. After getting some of the much-needed sleep we first went shopping in the afternoon - mainly into record stores - in one of which we saw one of the bands playing a few songs to promote their gig that night. I also couldn't resist and got myself a Das Pop CD, which isn't too bad.

ConcertsQueues at the check-in started rather early, around 8, that night - so we were having an early, unexciting, pasta dinner before heading off for Vera. On our way there I still had to exchange my ticket for the wristband that you needed to be let in everywhere. There was quite a queue for that alreadly - despite it being rather early in the night and freezing cold. We still arrived in time, which may also have been due to the bands playing not being as known as The Libertines on Thursday.

It turned out that The Raveonettes from Denmark who were supposed to play had cancelled last minute and The Superheroes, from Denmark as well, played instead. Their music sounded very well played and clean, while being fairly standard and unoriginal. The singer jumped around excessively, squirting water all over him for show - mind you, it was 8:30 in the evening, they were the first band, it wasn't very hot etc. A bit theatralic for my taste. But they may as well become big as their music was slightly agressive, sounded well-played and the singer pulled off his show bit. I guess the music industry likes that kind of thing as you can write all those nice article about how excentric the band is etc.

Next Singer and Bassist of Mando Diaoon were Mando Diao from Sweden - the third Scandinavian band to see. I liked them a lot. The music was original and on the rock-y side. When they came onto stage, all of them were wearing black turtlenecks, giving them very arty-farty looks and stressing that all of them looked quite similar anyway. They didn't stick to those for too long, though. Too bad they didn't seem to be selling records after the concert as I would've quite liked to have one and neither the German nor the British incarnation of amazon seems to sell them. I think I saw copies in one of the stores in Groningen, so I'll have to ask Richard again, who btw took the photos you see as well as other photos.

At this stage, everything was already running fairly late in Vera. Setting up for the different bands seemed to take ages and much longer than expected, so we were well behind schedule. The next band to come up were Miss Black America. Their gig will be broadcast on the John Peel show later this week.

I decided to not see them and instead went to a different venue to see Ska-P, a band of mid-thirties guys from Spain playing agressive, bouncy, loud music - as the name suggests. Their songs tend to be political, being against monarchy, death-penalty, war, the police and in favour of the legalisation of cannabis - singing about which in Holland seems a bit like carrying owls to Athens, elks to Norway or chimps into the White House. While this description may sound very negative, the music isn't - and the audience wasn't at all. The atmosphere was very good and people enjoyed themselves, dancing a lot. The band seem to have quite a routine in putting on their shows, having all kinds of costumes ready for the singer to dress up as a policeman in riot gear, the king, a prisoner on the electric chair etc. They also threw in a few complimentary shouts of George Bush asasino. Not much more to say, really.

Upon Tape playing Parker's drumsmy return to Vera, Parker from Sweden were already on stage - a girl and two guys. They were quite funny, but not brilliant. At the end they couldn't play all the instruments themselves, so they had brought tapes which they had recorded the drums on, playing and singing along with it. Their show included them changing into their own 'Parker' T-Shirts and long skirts on stage. I couldn't quite figure out why, though.

The very last gig took eons to start as they seemed to be having problems to get all of the equipment running on stage. The band was Dionysos, a bunch of barking mad Frenchman, froggies, so to speak. They played good, noisy music that got the people going and used unusual instruments, such as a violin and a strange electric device that seems to synthesise sounds depending on how close you get to it (I had never seen it before, but it looks very interesting - notably it can be played like a proper instrument but without touching it and using your whole body if you're so inclined). When they finished, the singer finally did some stage-diving and was carried all the way across the room to the sound desk and back. For the encore he played something on his harmonica, which was, um, a change. Have to re-listen to their music occasionally.

After this it must have been around 3 o'clock already, so we didn't stay for too long before we went back to Richard's place, making sure we copied all the photos he took, before sleeping as I wanted to leave before 11 to be back in Bremen timely, which I did.

While 'researching' the links for these posts, I discovered the site Grunnenrocks from Groningen. It also has reviews on the eurosonic festival.

January 14, 2003, 17:51

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