Thursday, 20th June 2019
After driving 663 km (3km too less…), we finally see familiar sights and tons of cars arriving already! We made it to Clisson !!!
My hearts starts beating faster as now it is even more real then the long drive there; it is that time of the year again!
After being well managed to a spot to park, right in view of the main stages, we head our way to the camping, where a very nice security guard talks to us, trying his best in English, telling us the camping will open between 9 – 10 am. Five minutes past 9 AM, we hear people shout, and going towards the fences that closed down the other camping sites. People start running for their lives, I’m pretty sure with the people we were there, there was space enough for everyone * wink *
Finding the what for us was the “ideal” spot, we start putting up our tents and finally take some well deserved rest, specially our driver who drove us that far, thank you for that! As this year there is an “extra” day of festival in the shape of “Knotfest” on the “holy” grounds of Hellfest, I start my journey towards the VIP entrance to pick up all needed passes. A friend texted me he had to wait 2h before having his turn, so I was kind of worrying already… Luckily, 30min later, I was all set and could step into the “Hell Square”.
Just arrived there, I already bumped into some photographer friends and had a nice cold beer, highly needed with the heat, while waiting to get access to the VIP / festival area.
At 4pm we stepped into our little “heaven”, because I can tell you, of all the festivals I have ever been to, no festival takes care of their VIP, like Hellfest does!
Well, I’m pretty sure that counts for about everyone attending this festival.
Making my way to the festival area, I already notice that again the area changed. Every year, it is a little surprise to see what is “new”. Sadly, this year, I was quite busy and didn’t step all around the area like I wanted to, I have to admit, the heat was a part of that issue also. Didn’t want to get sick again and end up in first aid like a few years ago.
The day starts with Amaranthe, even though they have been around for quite some years, I’m ashamed to say this is the very first time I saw the guys live. Everyone who knows me, knows I’m quite sceptical when it comes to women singing, don’t get me wrong, it is awesome to see them represented in metal bands but there is something about the voices that just stays a burden for me.But I can gladly tell I was quite surprised by her voice, mixed with the guys singing! Made it a bit different then just female voices.
While waiting for the next back, I still see a part of Ministry their show, kind of regret I didn’t go shoot them (with my camera that is), but well after only very few hours of sleep, I wanted to sit and rest for a while… but the songs I did hear were good and wished I had seen the whole gig, as according to my friend, they were pretty killing it!
Ah Behemoth, I can’t count on my hand & feet anymore how many times I saw them live, but one thing is sure… they NEVER disappoint! I have to say, the show was way to short, but well that is a typical festival thing I guess, if your not headlining. Sadly no time for my favourite song during this set, next time! The amount of fire used made the heat even worse then it already was, ahum!
The next band was a band I was really curious about, Papa Roach. I knew they were far from the kind of bands I normally listen to, but this is what festivals are for, check out bands you would skip when they pass in your country. From the very first song, till the very last note, this band had me in their power. I was totally amazed by the energy they have on stage! There is something about this band, which kept me watching and thinking “I need to see more of this in the future”. And then they stole my heart by playing “firestarter” by The Prodigy, honouring Keith Flint; by instead of keeping 1min of silence they chose to do this!
I wisely skipped Powerwolf (sorry guys, tastes and such), as I will never understand why people like this so much? Probably because this will be type of music in general (nothing personal), I will never be able to like. Luckily for me, my friend doesn’t seem to mind them and said they were fun as always!
Amon Amarth was quite in shape too, but then again, aren’t they always?
Last band of the day for me, due to being tired of travelling all the way to the festival after work with barely any sleep is Rob Zombie. It had been a few years since I saw the band live and I was surprised how amazing this gig was. He seemed to be enjoying himself also and treated the first row with a little visit during the 4thsong. Which was a joy for us photographers in the pit too for damn close up photos!
All I can say is that this little addition to Hellfest was a damn nice treat! And I secretly hope it will get a follow up next year!?