Special CONFRONT Correspondent, Kevin Maples, shares his experience of the festival and it’s line-up
A Broadcast by special CONFRONT Correspondent, Kevin Maples
Everyone loves the smell of their own brew. After an amazingly successful week-end of metal music at Parc Jean-Drapeau there comes a point where metalheads sit back, reflect, and then ask themselves: ‘What took so long?’! This is a city overflowing with a full-scale obsession with all things dark and extreme, yet it takes this long before someone decided to get off their ass and exploit it! Well, at least someone finally woke up and made the potential for a large scale event that celebrates a marriage between our city and heavy metal, a reality!
The success of this week-end’s festival is owed to the well balanced line-up. Classic heavy-hitters such as Iron Maiden and Motley Crüe are sure bets for drawing out the denim-clad hipsters, and they did not disappoint. The crowd was one massive fashion disaster and it was beautiful. Don’t get me wrong, I am fully entertained by cowboy hats, chain-link thongs and pleather clothing doing a very bad job at restraining sun-starved skin. But I digress…
On a less visually dramatic note, but perhaps the highlight of this festival: VOIVOD. This band put Montreal on the map for metal music like no other. They had Daniel Mongrain (from the math-metal colossus Martyr) on guitar for this show. I couldn’t think of a better choice to pay homage to Piggy’ riffs even if I tried really, really hard. Only those familiar with Martyr know what a treat that was. The organizers get a billion merit badges for giving this reunion such a massive stage and audience. It is going to be hard to top for next year, but I like watching people scramble….
Saturday was a day of discoveries for me. Prior to this week-end I was part of this small group of like, three people that had no clue who Dethklok was. Then, about a day or two before the festival I was totally and unexpectedly bitch-slapped with hype. Everybody was talking about this band(?), so I was pretty anxious to see what it was all about. Gene Hoglan on drums and a quasi-cartoon-comedy-thrash-metal performance. I had to check it out. The set was tight and the cartoon interludes were… cute, and I can see why Dethklok got the hype. The music was the heaviest I heard all Saturday. Hatebreed is heavy, but c’mon, Gene Hoglan. From Death. Bonecrushing. They also had some pretty crazy guitar solos. But they won’t make me watch T.V.
Now its time to talk about a band called Hammerfall. These guys have been around forever, the come from effing SWEDEN, once had a member from In Flames and probably have a bunch of loyal fans. But they totally sucked. I couldn’t believe it. I wasn’t the only one affected by their amateur, loose-sounding set. Looking around I could see people’s faces change as if someone in their immediate surroundings had just ripped a candid, but putrid smelling fart. Picture confusion, disgust and the initial stages of inquisition all rolled into one facial expression. I did some research on this band for this blog (read: I checked Wikipedia), here’s what I found: they sing about fantasy. Good for you Hammerfall. Good for you.
Mastodon. What can I say, these guys rip. I had the opportunity to interview Brann Dailor and this interview will be up on the site soon. We chatted about crystal skulls and eating Mastodon meat. Be sure to check it out!
There is no doubt in my mind that this festival is going to become legendary. It is in the right place at the right time, and if the organizers can keep the great line-ups coming, Heavy MTL will be around exposing the dark underbelly of music for years to come!
To see images of the event, visit www.heavymtl.com
To discuss the festival or metal music or anything else music related, visit the CONFRONT Community and make your voices heard.