Hellflame festival 2007
Osnabrück/ Germany - September 8, 2007
report by Twilightheart
Hellflame festival is a very nice and well attended festival in the north of
Germany, in a city called Osnabrück. The location where the madness took place
is called “N8”. This little club unfortunately could hardly take all the
visitors that came to see this year’s line-up. Even fans from the neighbouring
counties came there, for instance some guys from The Netherlands and Denmark to
The event started with
Secrets of the moon, a Black Metal band from Germany, from Osnabrück where
the Hellflame took place, to be exact. That’s why they of course had home
advantage, growing up in this city and playing in front of their own people. So
when they kicked off with “Ordinance” and “Ghost” from their new album
the crowd became enthusiastic immediately. The heat in the venue didn’t stop
people from headbanging and having a good time. The stage was almost too small
for the band, vocalist Lars could hardly headbang properly with his ultra long
hair. The sound was quite okay, but it was not loud enough to my opinion. You
could stand in front of the speakers without feeling any vibration. Anyway the
band delivered a fucking wild gig. The favourite songs of the fans followed in
rapid succession, such as “Miasma” or “Seraphim is dead”. When Lars
shouted “Lucifer” the whole crowd continued “Speaks”, followed by
“Lucifer speaks”. Some heavy guitar solos put even more spice to the gig.
Unfortuantely there was only “Versus” still to come before the gig was over
too soon. Secrets of the moon indeed were a worthy opener of this festival.
next band, Wolfbrigade, was neither my nor most visitors' taste,
as they belonged to the Punk’n’Roll style. So I quickly took a photo
for you guys and then I left and cannot tell you anything about their
gig, sorry. For sure they have their fans (and quite a few people
watched their gig, it seemed like some friends of the band came along to
support them) and they have their right to exist in the music world, of
course, but it was just the wrong choice to let them play at this
particular festival. Mixing styles at festivals can be a nice thing, but
not if you put a Punk band among Thrash-and Death-legends like
Destruction, Grave or Benediction.
As many of you know, Grave
have already played a few gigs performing only their old legendary songs and
absolutely no new material. Unfortunately I had missed that gig at last
month’s Party San festival, so I was glad that I could see it at least once,
here at the Hellflame festival. The Death Metal giants from Sweden entered the
stage with incredible energy, starting with “You’ll never see” and “Deformed”.
Immediately it was packed again within the venue, the little fights for the best
places in the first rows had started. It seemed everyone wanted to see this gig.
“Unknown” and „Christi(ns)anity“ followed and the die-hard-fans of Grave
could growl and sing along to all the lyrics. The band granted themselves not a
single break, so track by track was performed with much passion > „For your
god“, „Turning black“, „Obsessed“, „And here I die... satisfied“.
Whatever caused Grave’s decision to play those gigs with old songs only, it
was the right decision. The fans just went totally crazy. After some encores
such as “Into the grave” and “Soulless” the band left the stage and the
ovations were overwhelming.
Onslaught from the UK were up next. These
Thrashers from Bristol are active since 1983 and here they showed up with Sy
Keeler, who had been the ex-vocalist between 1986 and 1987 and returned to the
band in 2005. You may now think, Thrash from the UK might not be well-received
by the young fans in Germany, but Onslaught proved us all wrong. The very old
Thrash-fans headbanged side by side with the young visitors. It was all like a
big party including three generations. The band members of Onslaught are true
posers, like in the good ol’times. The set was turned on with “Killing peace”,
„Let there be death“, „Angels of death“ and „Metal forces“. If you
know the band’s new DVD you might have noticed that they performed the songs
almost in the same order like on this DVD. “Twisted Jesus” and “Fight with
the beast” were up next and each body (on stage or off) within the venue was
covered in sweat. Amongst others Onslaught provided us with “Demoniac”,
“Burn” and “Power from hell” bevor they went off, leaving the audience
in best mood.
been a long time since my last Naglfar gig, so it urgently was about time
for another one. Believe me, suddenly even the photopit was packed. And the
venue was overcrowded. With superior ease the Swedes of Naglfar entered the
stage and kicked off as aggressive as possible with “The darkest road”,
followed by “Spoken words of venom”. If you know these two songs you can
easily guess that these tracks pushed the raging emotions within the fan crowd
to the maximum within a few seconds. I had a feeling that almost all fans within
the first two rows could growl along to all the lyrics. And there was heaviest
headbanging as well, I think I don’t need to mention it. Vocalist Kristoffer
put on his grimmest face throughout the whole show, smashing those lyrics
towards us: “I walk alone, I was born unknown, I die alone”. How could you
not love it? I was glad to see the audience still totally freaking out at the
Naglfar gigs, just like in their beginning days. I hope this great resonance
inspires the band to go on for several more years.
Oh well, unfortunately I missed Benediction. Too bad! But Claudia and me were supposed to have an interview with Shining exactly during the stage time of Benediction. To cap it all, the interview went wrong somehow and we haven’t made our final decision yet, if we should publish it. Just in case we will not print it, I don’t want to withhold the photo from you which was supposed to appear with the interview. Here’s the band (with the manager, but without the drummer) backstage at Hellflame:
When the German Thrash
legends of Destruction entered the stage it was finally time to turn the
speakers louder, to the limit, so to speak. Now it was impossible to stay right
in front of the speakers without a lasting damage of your ability to hear.
“Curse the gods” and “Nailed to the cross” were the opening songs and
within a few moments all visitors tried to enter the club to have a look at
Destruction. As I said before, the venue is too small for events with bands of
such a level, and some fans just had no choice but to stay outside. Those who
made it inside were standing on everything you can imagine: the speakers-tables,
the barriers, the bar stools, the stairs and so on. There was not a single empty
space left. And all of them were headbanging, screaming, worshipping their
favourite band with shouts and screams, just having a great time. Destruction
continued with “The defiance will remain” and lots of their classics such as
“Death trap”, “Machinery of lies” and “Invincible force”. Schmier (the
vocalist) several times pointed out to the fact how much he loves to see old and
young fans celebrating Thrash Metal together. Built upon mad riffs and followed
by a stunning drum solo the band kept on with “Metal discharge”. Towards the
end of the gig Destruction had to play many encores, such as “Total desaster”
(of course…), “Bestial invasion” and “The butcher strikes back”. So
this gig found its ending after ringing cheers.
the Shining gig started I had a chat with one of the girls in the
first row, who has attended quite many Shining gigs in the past. She
assumed that there wouldn’t be any “special” action on stage this
night as the festival was open for visitors younger than 18 years.
Anyway I was curious about the upcoming show.
Meanwhile the delay in the playing-time schedule had risen up to more than 1 hour. This caused the effect that many visitors had to leave the festival to catch the last train home. Too bad.
Then finally the gig started and the stage was covered in darkness (only two spotlights were gleaming slightly) and you could see the shadows of the band members entering the stage to a very melodic intro.
As soon as the band started
out with „Eradiction of the condition“ the flashlights of the photographers’
cameras continued to lighten the stage throughout the whole gig. And of course
all those die-hard Shining fans in the front rows had a hell of a good time and
The sound could have been better (at some times I had a feeling like the monitors are not working properly) but the fans didn’t care, of course, ‘cause what they saw and felt during the gig was a satisfying compensation. Each listener was immediately pulled into the undertow of Shinings staggering but at the same time fascinating music. You just have to experience this live, only then you have the full effect of the music. It’s far more superior than on CD.
The band continued with „Låt oss ta allt från varandra“ from the latest album and then
Niklas hellcomed the visitors with “We are Shining, spining, whining” before
they continued with „Ytterligare
ett steg närmare total jävla utfrysning“. Niklas continuously drank from his
bottles with different liquids (some looking like Whisky or related stuff, the
rest looking like blood) and spat lots of blood into the audience. That male
photographer in front of me was not exactly happy when some drops hit his
light-blue jeans. ;-)
For Kvarforth’s musicians it was a rather good day, I suppose, because Niklas couldn’t get enough of hugging them and kissing them onto the forehead. Funny in a way, as the musicians all entered the stage looking completely normal, but leaving with bloody faces.
After „Svart industriell
olycka“ and hitting the bottles Niklas got into his stride and intensivied the
contact to the Shining fans. He jumped down and shared his highproofs with the
audience. And whenever he couldn’t hold back his “Fuck you”s to the crowd,
most fans knew how to handle and just flipped him the bird and gave irreverent
The next pieces of dismal propaganda were „Någonting är jävligt fel“, „Claws of perdition“, „Ännu ett steg närmare total utfrysning“ and „Längta bort från mitt hjärta“. With each song Niklas became more inflamed and with empty eyes but phenomenal growling and singing he threw his dark thoughts towards us with the lyrics.
he just poured the blood from the bottle over his body and covered a few fans
with it as well. After the gig several guys and girls looked like actors from a
horror-movie-massacre. Niklas also had some intense moments with a special girl
in the audience, kissing her, licking her fingers and some other passionate
To summarise, the Hellflame
festival has a great ambience, but bands like these need a bigger venue. Already
last year I said I will not go there again, as it’s just too far away, but I
don’t dare to give this prognosis for next year again, as the organizers of
this event have this special talent to chose bands that I absolutely want to see
(again). So I close this report by saying carefully: see you there next year,
To see more photos of the bands go to "festival photos"!
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