KIT XVI Day 1 @ Lauda-Königshofen (DE)

POSSESSED / LIEGE LORD / MEDIEVAL STEEL / HOLOCAUST / QUARTZ / MORBID SAINT / HIGH SPIRITS / AIR RAID / ELIMINATOR / BORROWED TIME

Date: 19th April, 2013
Venue: Tauberfrankenhalle
Ticket: €49 / $66 (two days)
Promoter: Keep It True
Photos: Erika Wallberg


Erika: ‘Keep It True’ festival has been the kick-start of summer the last couple of years. Mainly due to the weather in Germany at this time of the year, but also since ‘KIT’ is one of the first real festivals of the season, so this is the occasion to say high to old friends after a long winter.

As always the lineup of the festival was amazing. First band out was BORROWED TIME I did check it out as soon as I saw the name and I have to say on record BORROWED TIME sounds interesting even if the compilation/EP “Arcane Metal Arts” leaves a bit to wish for when it comes to production and performance. But what amazes me a lot, especially with American bands, is that they can release an ok record and then kick major ass live. Because the way BORROWED TIME sounded live compared to what they managed to capture on record was miles apart I think (in comparison to many other bands which sounds awesome on album but can’t re-produce the same thing live). They had a bit of that SLOUGH FEG drive and intensity in the music even if they looked rather mellow performing. The downside though was J. Priest’s vocals, the volume was rather low where I was standing and almost disappeared from time to time. A bit unfortunate because when it came through it too sounded really good. But then, what was lost in sound was weighed up in performance. J. Priest had that kind of Bobby Liebling appearance with the crazy eyes and rather fluffy moves, without the flamboyant outfits (thank god) though. Of course, everyone should create their own style but he sure was fun to watch and a performer is needed to keep the interest up for a new band. Musically I really enjoyed BORROWED TIME; I love the combination of traditional Metal and the bit more obscure sounded in the vein of MANILLA ROAD or (again) SLOUGH FEG. Take the set opener “Burning Mistress” catchy but a bit odd, then of course the new “Libertine” which is a very dark and epic piece. For me it is great to see bands exploring these paths as well. One of my favorites from the “Arcane Metal Arts” closed the set, a bit more up-tempo “Fog In The Valley” which mainly just left me wanting more from this band. Anyway, BORROWED TIME started the festival in a very good way, put the bar extremely high for other bands and yes, this proved hard to beat, at least if you ask me.

BORROWED TIME setlist:

01. “Burning Mistress”
02. “Midnight Tygers”
03. “Black Olympia”
04. “Libertine”
05. “Of Nymph And Nihil…”
06. “Sailor On The Seas Of Fate”
07. “Dawn For The Glory Rider”
08. “Fog In The Valley”

BORROWED TIME

Borrowed Time @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Borrowed Time @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Borrowed Time @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Borrowed Time @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Borrowed Time @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg)
Borrowed Time @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Borrowed Time @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Borrowed Time @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Borrowed Time @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Borrowed Time @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg)
Borrowed Time @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Borrowed Time @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Borrowed Time @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Borrowed Time @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Borrowed Time @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg)

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Erika: ELIMINATOR was up next and I’m not sure if they have changed a lot over the last year or if I’m mixing them with some other band. I got the first EP “We Rule The Night” on tape, which I really like. I love that NWOBHM feeling mixed with standard Heavy Metal. However, just as BORROWED TIME the tape feels rather rough and unpolished. That was not what hit the stage there. For some reason it was a bit of a turn-off with the kind of matching outfits, which of course can be very cool but that’s not how it came across here, white shirts just isn’t Metal and to pull it off you need to go all the way. It could also have had a bit to do with Jack MacMichael’s tennis-bandana which just looked rather silly.

One thing though that testified that I might be talking about the same band though was the expression on guitar player Jack’s face when he missed a little, nothing anyone could hear but there was no doubt about him being displeased with his own performance on a few occasion.

But ELIMINATOR sounded great and just as BORROWED TIME; (again) they performed with a lot of energy and drive and it felt like they’ve been doing this for ages, not at all the awkward band that I saw about a year ago. To see this kind of progress in a band in such a short period of time is always fascinating. ELIMINATOR’s material really works well live, both “Outlaws Of The Highway” and “Danger In The Skies” sounded amazing here, better than the records since the volume and pressure from the crowd boosted it all, but absolutely ELIMINATOR’s performance as well. Best in the set was speedy “The Warrior... Of The Sky” which heated up the venue a couple of levels.

ELIMINATOR setlist:

01. “Outlaws Of The Highway”
02. “Danger In The Skies”
03. “The Seer”
04. “Echoes”
05. “The Warrior... Of The Sky”
06. “We Rule The Night”
07. “Traitor”

ELIMINATOR

Eliminator @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Eliminator @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Eliminator @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Eliminator @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Eliminator @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg)
Eliminator @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Eliminator @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Eliminator @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Eliminator @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Eliminator @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg)
Eliminator @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Eliminator @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Eliminator @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Eliminator @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Eliminator @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg)

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Erika: Swedish AIR RAID has come from nowhere, at least from my perspective. The first time I heard of them it was when their name appeared on the ‘Keep It True’ roster. While checking them out I was a bit surprised that they already had one EP, “Danger Ahead” out and a full length album, “Night Of The Axe” on the way. Compared to many other Swedish bands in this old school nostalgia genre I think AIR RAID stands really high. I like their MAIDEN-esque styled music. The thing though is that they have a more modern touch to it that is mainly due to vocalist Michael Rinakakis. The way he sings is perhaps more late USA 80’s than early British alike. But damn he can sing; there were a few occasions he was screaming like crazy, could have been in “Free At Last” or maybe “Call Of The Warlocks” where he pushed everything to the limit. And when he did every hair on my body stood straight up. There’s not very many out there who manages these kinds of crazy but still very controlled screams. But compared to the previous two bands on the bill AIR RAID was the opposite, they sound professional on album but didn’t really manage to capture the same live. AIR RAID still sounded perfectly ok but to get up after two bands that did such good performances, only perfection is good enough. I don’t think AIR RAID managed to capture that. But perhaps they just need a bit more stage experience and routine to live up to their records.

But again, I think AIR RAID has some really good stuff on their albums, “Night Of The Axe” worked perfect live, as well as “The Lost City”. The one that got stuck on me the most and apparently on many others as well if judging on the response AIR RAID got for it, “Midnight Burner” is a very good sing-a-long track and of course perfect for a live occasion.

AIR RAID setlist:

01. “Treason” (intro)
02. “Night Of The Axe”
03. “The Lost City”
04. “Annihilation”
05. “Riding Out”
06. “Free At Last”
07. “Call Of The Warlock”
08. “Midnight Burner”
09. “When The Sky Turns Red”
10. “A Blade In The Dark”

AIR RAID

Air Raid @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Air Raid @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Air Raid @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Air Raid @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Air Raid @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg)
Air Raid @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Air Raid @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Air Raid @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Air Raid @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Air Raid @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg)
Air Raid @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Air Raid @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Air Raid @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Air Raid @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Air Raid @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg)

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DimK: Chicago was in the eye of a terrible thunderstorm and it was pouring cats and dogs making the drive to the airport an impossible adventure. And I say impossible since the packed and flooded roads made us lose the flight to Frankfurt even though we had started this ‘trip’ way earlier than normal. But no matter what METAL KAOZ would be in ‘Keep It True’ festival. After all what does not kill you... makes you reschedule your flight plans.

Of course, there was a toll to pay and shut-eye time was the currency for this. So, we arrived at the familiar venue some minutes before the set of Chicago’s finest Hard rockers HIGH SPIRITS. I won’t pretend to be tough and I will admit that I was moved while watching our home boys tearing it up in Germany with the brand new “When The Lights Go Down”. The sound was awesome, HIGH SPIRITS were running on high-octane fuel while the nice surprise was the reaction from the audience. Even though this track was from the band’s latest EP many of them knew the lyrics and joined Chris on singing. During “I Need To Know” a bass guitar problem showed up but failed to take away the momentum that was already built from the Chicagoans. The band’s frontman said that the following track was dedicated to the departed RIOT guitarist Mark Reale as a preamble for the magnificent “Midnight Sun”. The sing-along chorus was definitely one of the highest moments of the HIGH SPIRITS set. Apparently, we were not the only ones from Chicago since Chris greeted some friends standing in the frontlines and dedicated “Running Home” because we would be flying home after ‘KIT’. Hands down HIGH SPIRITS were the best festival starters and if you don’t know this band then check them out ASAP.

HIGH SPIRITS setlist:

01. “When The Lights Go Down”
02. “Full Power”
03. “I Need To Know”
04. “Another Night In The City”
05. “Torture”
06. “Midnight Sun”
07. “Never Going Back”
08. “Nights In Black”
09. “Going Up”
10. “High Spirits”
11. “Don't Look Down”
12. “Running Home”

HIGH SPIRITS

High Spirits @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) High Spirits @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) High Spirits @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) High Spirits @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) High Spirits @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg)
High Spirits @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) High Spirits @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) High Spirits @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) High Spirits @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) High Spirits @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg)
High Spirits @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) High Spirits @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) High Spirits @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) High Spirits @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) High Spirits @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg)

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DimK: After a great start from Chicago’s finest HIGH SPIRITS it was time to travel North in Wisconsin with the reactivated thrashers of MORBID SAINT. ‘Keep It True’ is a festival for the old-school lovers and this US band had the perfect music profile. Without wasting precious time and under the enthusiastic welcome from the audience MORBID SAINT kicked off the Thrash festivities with the title track from the “Destruction System” demo and without pausing “Lock Up Your Children”. “We are MORBID SAINT from Sheboygan, Wisconsin of the United States of America and we are happy to be here” said Pat Lind introducing the band to the already sweating audience before getting back to business with “Burned At The Stake”. Apparently, MORBID SAINT would play the entire “Spectrum Of Death” and my personal pick was “Damien” that got a violent reaction from the audience that did not pay much attention at the rain forest humidity. Ok, there was not a lot movement from the band but I wouldn’t expect much from Jay Visser who was non-stop riff machine gun but I cannot say the same for Pat Lind who looked at times kind of awkward. I guess the more the play live the faster he will get back to full action. The thrashing setlist ended with the first song this band wrote together and that was the SLAYER-esque (early of course) “Thrashaholic”. Things were looking extremely good for this year’s establishment of ‘Keep It True’.

MORBID SAINT setlist:

01. “Destruction System”
02. “Lock Up Your Children”
03. “Burned At The Stake”
04. “Assassin”
05. “Damien”
06. “Crying For Death”
07. “Spectrum Of Death”
08. “Scars”
09. “Beyond The Gates Of Hell”
10. “Thrashaholic”

MORBID SAINT

Morbid Saint @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Morbid Saint @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Morbid Saint @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Morbid Saint @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Morbid Saint @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg)
Morbid Saint @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Morbid Saint @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Morbid Saint @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Morbid Saint @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Morbid Saint @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg)
Morbid Saint @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Morbid Saint @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Morbid Saint @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Morbid Saint @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Morbid Saint @ Keep It True XVI, Lauda-Königshofen (DE) (Photos By Erika Wallberg)

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