Sunday, May 17, 2009

Every Shirt XLIX: Atheist

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shirt: Atheist - Roger Patterson memorial/reunion tour
size: XL (EU)
vintage: 2006
provenance: festival

This is one of my favorite shirts, not because it's excessively comfy (it's small, and cut ridiculously short even with less gut than I have today), but because it memorializes a great musician, one of my favorite bands, and probably the best single musical performance that I've ever seen, in metal or outside.

The shirt dates from the 2006 W:O:A; I remember precisely which merch stand I got it from, what side it was on, the difficulty making myself understood over the first bands' soundcheck. This may be due to it being early in the day and in advance of nearly all the beer, but I also remember nearly every moment of Atheist's set, which I spent pounded up against the front rail, head practically in the speakers, because when a truly great band gets back together, you do what you have to to get the most out of them, and make the sacrifices that you need to make. There are other Wacken highlights -- snorting fire and thrashing in the bar for Dissection and Kreator in '05, adventures with Mudman in '07, the epic nine-hour railstand of '08 for Hatebreed/Carcass/ATG/Kreator, various infield bar escapades and howling at the moon in the campground -- but Atheist, from where I saw them, was by far the best of these, the highest high, one of those special stars-align moments that really makes you remember why you love this kind of music so much. When I put this shirt on, I think back to it, and that's enough to make it a permanent fave.

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