Friday, August 26, 2011

Suomi Finland Tourkele part 11: Heathen Tribes

8/13 - Schlotheim

And yet here it is, 7AM, I'm done with breakfast, and still writing. Maybe get a beer or two, then go back to camp and sleep on the table; the bill for today is fuckin killer, and I need to make it to and through At The Gates.

As noted, I'm down to the square root of nothing merch-wise. I have half a pack of Bluntface stickers, the Blessed Offal record that I haven't technically managed to move yet, and then it's frickin buttons. I wasn't sure I'd be able to move all I had from FA and the BCS stack, but it's all gone. The sign helped; I'll be bringing my own markers over next time to make sure that goes out for Wednesday/Thursday. However, the sign wouldn't've helped anything if the people at this festival weren't honestly interested in all corners of the scene.

But seriously, I'm moving buttons? Come on.

Yes, seriously. I took the morning slow, hanging out with the Erfurt guys after moving the Blessed Offal record onto one of Timo's dudes (to the girl who got buttonholed by them, if you're reading this, leave comment = get rip of Bone Ritual demo; apologies that I didn't bring next to any black metal stuff over) -- old Broken Hope counts, right? -- and took part in the demolition of a decent bottle of Moskovskaya.

I also met the Chörnyj Woron guys again, by total accident; the same themes from two years ago about the coming end (or not) of the superfests are still relevant. After they left, Mitzi came by, which was more good craic, and eventually someone decided christ, we're all drunk again at 2 in the afternoon, let's go see some bands so our friends won't laugh at us when we get home.

437. Panzerchrist in Festivision.

The lack of focus nearly captures the haze you get when you and your friends are playing soccer on the road to the campsite and need to empty another 5l keg every time the "ball" gets too beat up to use, or dribbled off with by some random addition to having a live can in your hand the whole time.

Panzerchrist [5.5/7]
Good, hard-hitting thrash music; a good pick-me-up in the middle of the afternoon. During this set Mitzi ended up rounding up, by chance, most of the rest of the Israeli contingent -- including Omer, who'd been operating for a year under the misapprehension that I was Scottish. This is why it matters what booze you back; in the absence of other information, it's an easy, if often terminally incorrect, ethnic signifier.

438. Panzerchrist gives the crowd a kick in the teeth.

Heidevolk [6/7]
This was really the only other band that I was an-sich motivated to see, so it was really good that I was in the infield and not completely wrecked. Much like on CD, this was a strong but not outstanding performance right up until "Vulgaris Magistralis", at which point people went bananas. Heidevolk is a good band, but that one song is so good, especially live in a festival context, that people may be tempted to write them off as a one-hit wonder.

439. Heidevolk, done with the ooga-chakas and hailing the crowd.

Here, we split; more drinking with various dudes, a bite to eat, and I end up on bench with the dudes from camp, yelling at people to smile. Success rate is about 50%; maybe high for stereotypical growling metalheads, but this is Party.San.

440. Knut demonstrates for Aktion Lächeln.

441. Knut with his glasses off. I promise this isn't Ryan from Autumn Above on the other side of the water.

Time went by, we played more Dosenfußball -- a big reason for the popularity of soccer worldwide is not only that you can play it with a crumpled-up minikeg in the middle of a crowd, but that since you're not allowed to use your hands, you don't have to put down your beer -- and eventually, I went back in for what would end up being my last band of the festival.

Watain [6/7]
Watain war's wert. This set wasn't as good as the one from last year, but you can count on this band to kick ass, always, and that they did.

442. Watain - to the death!

443. The audience by night.

Ground down by another hard-partying day, it was back to the site, to half-hear Enslaved and trade "4AM whiskey/soaked wisdom" with the other old dudes from the group. Haasi'd gotten the Disinter CD he was after, but there was still time and beer to go on about those hard, crystallizing moments when death is right there in front of you, in or out of your control, and if you survive, your fear is what dies. Heavy, maaan....but still, as shown, a hell of a time wrapped around and through.

444. Beersoaked, yet unbowed: left to right, Misha, Haasi, Sven, and me. Here's to comrades, near and far.

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