Copenhell Festival Day 1 @ Refshaleøen (DK)

DANZIG / PARKWAY DRIVE / ALICE IN CHAINS / GHOST / IN FLAMES / ILLDISPOSED / AMON AMARTH / BETWEEN ME AND THE BURIED / CELESTE / SCARRED BY BEAUTY / CANCER BATS / PURIFIED IN BLOOD / BY THE PATIENT

Date: 14th June, 2013
Venue: Refshaleøen
Ticket: 2-Days 795DKK (€106)
Promoter: Live Nation
Photos: Erika Wallberg


How can I put it, well I love this festival. Sure, the billing is perhaps not all in my taste all the time but the ‘Copenhell Festival’ staff sure do everything to amuse people. How cool is it to have a burning wooden church setup on the festival grounds. It was an actual building, smelled like it was burning and smoke was coming out of it (ok, it was fake). And what how can a church be without a cemetery? Yes, this was included as well, no coffins 6 feet under though. They were for resting!

We got to the festival area just to catch the last few notes of BETWEEN ME AND THE BURIED but the real start was coming up after. Swedish AMON AMARTH hit the Helveti stage at 4:30pm on a sunny Friday afternoon. It had been quite some time since I had seen them and I think they played in every festival possible when “Fate Of Norns” was released some years ago. And it was a charged AMON AMARTH that hit the stage. It’s also good to see the old 80’s spirit with massive stage arrangements (of course kudos to ‘Copenhell Festival’ too who allows this) with a whole Viking ship. It was fun to watch the crowd for AMON AMARTH too, especially from the photo-pit. Every person at the fence knew all about AMON AMARTH while the rest had no clue looking a bit curious at their neighbors while they were singing along to everything, including the riffs on occasion. Take the mighty “The Pursuit Of Vikings” for example; the trademark riff is of course easy to remember and has become a trademark for AMON AMARTH and having the crowd singing along made it even better. Then, there’s no denying Johan Hägg’s power; I doubt anyone dares to say anything against him when he puts his foot down. The thing though, as massive as he is he really appeared loveable as well, a bit cheerful even.

AMON AMARTH had released their 9th full length album “Deceiver of the Gods” just days after the festival, but they were nice enough and served the title track from that album. Then just a massive hit parade (of you’re allowed to call it that) followed; the magnificent “Cry Of The Black Birds”, “Death In Fire”, then “Twilight Of The Thunder God” just to build up to the great ending in “Guardians Of Asgaard”. Amazing set to start off the day and a great performance by AMON AMARTH.

AMON AMARTH setlist:

01. War Of The Gods
02. The Pursuit Of Vikings
03. Destroyer Of The Universe
04. For Victory Or Death
05. Asator
06. Free Will Sacrifice
07. Deceiver Of The Gods
08. Cry Of The Black Birds
09. Death In Fire
10. Twilight Of The Thunder God
11. Guardians Of Asgaard

AMON AMARTH

Amon Amarth @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Amon Amarth @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Amon Amarth @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Amon Amarth @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Amon Amarth @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg)
Amon Amarth @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Amon Amarth @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Amon Amarth @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Amon Amarth @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Amon Amarth @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg)
Amon Amarth @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Amon Amarth @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Amon Amarth @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Amon Amarth @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Amon Amarth @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg)

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It’s actually fascinating how to bands can come across so different. Sure, for the die-hard Metal fan the difference between AMON AMARTH and ILLDISPOSED is huge but for one not listening to the music is at least towards the same direction. But no one, metalhead or not could mix the bands just by watching them. The genuinely cheerful atmosphere around AMON AMARTH was changed to something completely different at the Hades stage. On occasion it felt like vocalist Bo Summer didn’t want to be there. Lazy and laid back doesn’t really work, at least not if you’re supposed to match AMON AMARTH’s fantastic performance. It’s actually a shame because ILLDISPOSED sounded rather good, their Death Metal stand in class with any big band really but if you can’t convince the crowd that you mean what you’re doing they won’t stick around either. And that was what happened, the ones in the front stayed of course but the ones relaxing a bit further to the back soon started to mind their own business and enjoy the lovely Festival day rather than watch ILLDISPOSED.

ILLDISPOSED

Illdisposed @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Illdisposed @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Illdisposed @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Illdisposed @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Illdisposed @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg)
Illdisposed @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Illdisposed @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Illdisposed @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Illdisposed @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Illdisposed @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg)
Illdisposed @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Illdisposed @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Illdisposed @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Illdisposed @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Illdisposed @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg)

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Another Swedish live favorite was up next and I am talking about the major act IN FLAMES that hit the Helveti Stage. It was a while since I had last seen them live so I was really looking forward to this. My first live-encounter with IN FLAMES when they just had released “Clayman” and played a show in Uppsala (SE) together with DARK TRANQUILLITY. The latter of the two opened and did a hell of a show, for a second I didn’t think IN FLAMES could match that but they sure did. Ok, this was a while ago and both I and IN FLAMES have gotten older and no, it’s not as intense and frantic as it was. And I doubt any band can re-create something like that on a massive festival stage, as the concert in Uppsala was on a small club. Anyway, IN FLAMES sure still got it, they still are a well-oiled live machine and Anders Fridén knows how to trigger the crowd. It’s really fun to see that there are both young (very young in fact) and old in IN FLAMES crowd. It’s good to know new fans are coming.

IN FLAMES opened with title track from most recent release “Sounds Of A Playground Fading” followed by another new one, “Where The Dead Ships Dwell”. Then the hit parade started; “Pinball Map” sure got everyone jumping and it felt like the ground was shaking a bit. And this is what I mean, both for AMON AMARTH and IN FLAMES everything was so energetic and positive. While for ILLDOSPOSED it felt a bit dull. You can be dead serious about your music but if you don’t have fun on stage, the crowd won’t have either. “Trigger” boosted the crowd even more and l I enjoyed “Embody The Invisible” more than the previous two.

“Cloud Connected” was also a big hit and it still holds strong. The thing though, it hasn’t aged as well as the rest of the material. The effects, backtracks and such felt a bit outdated, nothing I’ve ever reflected over until now, but in comparison with the rest of the material it became very clear. So there’s no doubt IN FLAMES still got it, they have such a great back catalogue to dig from and that really showed in this set. Not a dull moment even if the play-time at ‘Copenhell Festival’ is rather extensive. The show ended with two more favorites of mine, Take This Life and My Sweet Shadow, though a bit newer than my absolutely favorites, these two are still really good songs and something amazing to see live.

IN FLAMES setlist:

01.Sounds Of A Playground Fading
02.Where The Dead Ships Dwell
03.Pinball Map
04.Trigger
05.Embody The Invisible
06.Cloud Connected
07.The Hive
08.Ropes
09.Fear Is The Weakness
10.The Quiet Place
11.All For Me
12.The Mirror's Truth
13.System
14.Deliver Us
15.Take This Life
16.My Sweet Shadow

IN FLAMES

In Flames @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) In Flames @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) In Flames @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) In Flames @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) In Flames @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg)
In Flames @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) In Flames @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) In Flames @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) In Flames @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) In Flames @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg)
In Flames @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) In Flames @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) In Flames @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) In Flames @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) In Flames @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg)

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It’s hard to understand the hype around GHOST I think. Sure, I really like the first album but it’s strange that it struck with the force it did. The band is kind of a spectacle but on the other hand it’s very fascinating that they’ve managed to keep the secret around the band as long as they have. And it showed here that they have a very strong following outside of Sweden as well. I have hardly experienced more frenzy from the first few rows at a concert, not at a festival at least. And it sure was powerful when Papa Emeritus II slowly walked on stage. The pressure was immense and the volume both from stage and crowd was deafening. “Per Aspera Ad Inferi” from new Infestissumamopened the show. And I didn’t really think everything could be turned up one notch further but it sure could, as the first notes of Con Clavi Con Dio sounded from the speakers the crowd went even crazier.

The dumb thing with experiencing the first few songs from the photo-pit is that the intensity is kind of lost getting out of there. But normally the difference isn’t as big as it was here. And the reason for that is that no show at ‘Copenhell Festival’ got the same response from the crowd as GHOST did. And sure, it was fun to watch the rest as well but the feeling a bit backwards wasn’t the same at all. I still think it’s very cool with a band with an as extreme image as GHOST has. Also the artistic side to it is fantastic, every detail in the clothes and the whole performance. Papa Emeritus II’s hat, the cloths and face-paint all helps with the drama, if not to speak about the incense being waved around here and there. I still think it was “Ritual” in the end of the set that got the strongest response; I assume this is the track that most people have heard, even if they’ve never listened to GHOST at all. And sure, it’s a catchy tune and is bond to stick after just a few spins.

Even if GHOST isn’t my favorite band this was a very cool concert. GHOST did another perfect performance as usual but the crowd was crazy and then the experience is the best.

GHOST setlist:

01. Intro – Infestissumam
02. Per Aspera Ad Inferi
03. Con Clavi Con Dio
04. Prime Mover
05. Secular Haze
06. Stand By Him
07. Death Knell
08. Satan Prayer
09. Year Zero
10. Ritual
11. Monstrance Clock”

GHOST

Ghost @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Ghost @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Ghost @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Ghost @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Ghost @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg)
Ghost @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Ghost @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Ghost @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Ghost @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Ghost @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg)
Ghost @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Ghost @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Ghost @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Ghost @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg) Ghost @ Copenhell @ Refshaleøen (DK) (Photos By Erika Wallberg)

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