Work in the press tent was as hectic as ever with a constant flow of interviews. As always the majority of acts we talked to were on the New Blood and Jäger stages, with a handful of SOPHIE and main stage performers for balance. The one thing which remained constant was how damn nice they all were, regardless of whether they were seasoned professionals or younger bands excited about hitting the Jäger tent.
Sean and I ploughed through 19 interviews between us with many more to come tomorrow, and I can honestly say we had a blast. It didn’t leave us much time to check out many of the bands live and I did miss a handful (a large handful) that I really wanted to see, but I did get the chance to wander once or twice.
Wednesday 13 was brilliant from the 3-4 songs I caught. Great showmanship, loads of fire and sexy ladies and a bit of humour about Def Leppard’s drummer that’s definitely enough years after the fact to not be “too soon”.
According to Bleed From Within’s vocalist, their SOPHIE stage set was the best show they’ve ever played, which is a coincidence as I was going to say it’s the best performance I’ve ever seen from them – and I’ve seen them a few times. Great guys and a well-deserved huge crowd for them, new and old fans alike.
I only caught one band in the New Blood tent, King Bison who I’d talked to earlier in the day. Their “headline” set (if such you could call it, by dint of them being the last ones to play) was great fun. Their dirty, groovy metal raised many fists, with a very impressive crowd opposite Emperor who were being all evil on the main stage.
Callus and Heretic Order both filled the small Jäger stage well, and both performed to crowds who spilled out quite some distance… and in both cases they impressed. Differing musical styles, but equally great to watch. The kind of bands you just stop to catch a song by on you way to another stage, but find yourself staying for longer than you expected.
Surprise of the day, though, was Lovebites being transferred to the main stage as Suicidal Tendencies got held up at immigration. The latter filled the former’s slot (and the SOPHIE tent… and then some!), while the Japanese visitors were quite simply incredible on the main stage. Despite being reduced to only three songs due to the emergency kit shift and setup, after what seemed a nervous last minute instrument check, they launched into full professional mode the moment the first notes were struck.
Simply, they are no novelty act. They’re great musicians, with great songs, who put on a hell of a show. I can only imagine how nervous they must have been with the last-minute switch but it absolutely did not show as they played to an audience who appreciated what was on offer – not a single voice of “we want Suicidal Tendencies” dissent. But then, this is Bloodstock… and the people here are too nice for that kind of crap.
Oh, and then there was Judas Priest. But you don’t need me to tell you how good they are live.