Soundwave 2011, Perth

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Mar 8 2011, 2:54

Mon 7 Mar – Soundwave 2011

WOAH. I am a few different colours right now - near-white, brown and pink. I got sunburnt, damn it! It wasn't even that hot, compared with last year at least, but the sun was as UV-riddled as ever I guess. Plus that damn hole in the ozone was still an issue.

Anyway...

Lacrymae (Stage 2)
I arrived at the Showgrounds in time to catch the last of the set from the local band on stage 2 - Lacrymae. I would describe them as operatic metal - they had keyboards and a 5-string bass. AND, I had been reflecting to myself on the way to the ground that there would probably be hardly any women on any of the stages throughout the day. I was right, and yet this local band had a chick guitarist! Simone Dow is her name, and it was pretty cool to see a lady up there shredding away.

Trash Talk (Stage 6).
I was just passing by and caught a glimpse of these guys - they were certainly getting the crowd all riled up with their doof doof sounds. I'm not a huge fan of that style of music, but it was fun to see the crowd bopping.

Feeder (Stage 1)
These guys had a decent crowd. 3-piece fast-paced rock, they got a nice response from the crowd. They ended their set with Grant Nicholas telling the crowd, "This one goes out to the old school." The song was Just a Day. I don't know much about this band, but subsequent research has filled me in on a bit of their history - sad to hear about their original drummer's demise. I really enjoyed their set!

MxPx/The Ataris (Stage 2)
I was excited to see the Ataris, though I took off before their mini-set ended because I wanted to catch a bit of Sevendust. Still, I enjoyed what I heard of their set, and their last song was Your Boyfriend Sucks. Earlier they had dedicated their song In This Diary, which singer/guitarist Kris Roe dedicated to "all our newfriends at Soundwave". Sadly I saw none of MXPX's set.

Sevendust (Stage 4).
I was a wee bit peeved because these guys were late onto the stage. While I could've been watching other bands, I waited in the crowd as a "Sevendust! Sevendust!" chant went up. The band didn't appear even then. I'm wondering if somebody was late showing up. Anyway...they finally got on stage, and I gave them a few songs before moving on. They looked to be putting on a good show, and I'd describe their sound as hard rock/metal, definitely melodic.

Monster Magnet (Stage 1)
This was one of the bands I was most looking forward to seeing. They had a rather tiny crowd, which saddened me, but they didn't let it get them down. Dave Wyndorf has an amazing speaking voice, and of course his singing voice is pretty amazing too. I loved how they began their set with a crescendo-like ending, you know how bands make a lot of noise to end their exiting song? It was cool to begin with that instead. Hehe. Their sound was BIG, and no matter how loud the guitars/bass/drums got, Wyndorf's voice was still clearly audible and powerful. I found the lead guitar style to be very sexy. Highlights of the set for me were Tractor, Crop Circle, and of course the magnificent Look to your Orb for Warning...but the ending was awesome too - the crowd chanting along to the chorus of Space Lord... "Space Lord Mother Fucker!!" Throughout the set, Wyndorf interacted with the crowd, but I rarely understood anything he was saying, except when he said something about burning in the blazing sun, finishing the comment with a growly "Ohhhh yeah!" I loved how he sang with his guitar hanging around his neck like a necklace. Hehe.

Bullet for My Valentine (Stage 2)
I saw these guys from afar, side-on, because I was waiting for the next band on Stage 1, Stone Sour. But I had a screen right nearby to watch Bullet's set on, and that did fine. I do blame it for a lot of my sunburn though, as I was turned towards the sun while watching. Anyway, I don't know these guys very well, but several things about them surprised me (yes, I had some preconceptions about 'em I guess). For one, I didn't realise they were quite that shreddy in terms of metal. I didn't realise they would look quite so much like an 80s hair metal band (I thought they'd be more screamo with the short black hair, make-up, etc.), and I also didn't realise they were British. So there you go - I knew shit all! The lead singer dude, Matt Tuck, made a comment at one point about us being "in this fucking heat!" I'm sure it was hotter on stage, but he should've been at LAST YEAR'S Soundwave - this year was so much nicer/cooler. This was the first time in the day that I saw some random chick's tits out - ahhh, metal. Quote of the set: "From here on in it's only gonna get hotter and heavier. Can you fuckin' handle it, Perth?!" Songs I recall were Waking the Demon, and their rendition of the Australian anthem, which the entire crowd sang along to. Fun times.

Stone Sour (Stage 1)
I was pretty damn excited for this set, and it was the only show I was right up the front for. Songs played included Through Glass, Get Inside (!!! This made me a very happy chicky), Made Of Scars and Digital. Corey Taylor made a comment too about the heat, saying, and I paraphrase, "I'm going to burn to a crisp out here, but that's okay - I'll burn along with all you motherfuckers." On another note, I'm always the person who's so close to something cool but never actually gets something tangible to hold onto. Like all the picks that rained down from the stage - many fell near me but I didn't catch any of 'em! Also all the drumsticks, I missed out once again. The only thing I got was some of Corey's saliva from the water he spat out at us. Now, I may be a fan of both Stone Sour and Slipknot, but I'm not so much of a fan not to wash that off in the shower. ;) This set was definitely the highlight of the day for me though, just because I got to hear Get Inside, and see Jim Root in the flesh again after 12 years. :D On a closing note, perhaps it's no surprise I thought guitarist Josh Rand was pretty sexy - he's completely bald, and I like that in a man. But he also has shiny awesome guitars. I was especially jealous of his red one, and that silver one was pretty hot too. ;)

Primus (Stage 2)
I only saw bits & pieces of Primus's set, but I did note that they started off with pigs masks on, a la the Mr. Krinkle video clip. They played Tommy The Cat (my personal favourite of those I saw) and Jerry Was A Race Car Driver (which Les Claypool introduced by saying, "This is an old song...written back in the 50s"). I would have loved to see more of their set, but damn those time clashes!! Just a note - they had these giant blow-up astronauts on the stage behind them. Funny. My favourite moment was just before the last song they played, when Les told the crowd, "This is our last song. We're going to sail off into the sunset. I've got a date on Rottnest Island with one of those little critters. Can't keep the rodents waiting." In short, my expectations - that I would see excessive quirkiness and be very entertained indeed - were met in spades!

Dimmu Borgir (Stage 4)
I wanted to catch a brief glimpse of these guys, and I did indeed manage to! They play great eerie black metal, or that's how I'd describe it. According to Last.fm it's "melodic black metal" too. It was slow, chuggy and mythic. They were in costume, which is a bit of a rarity nowadays in the bands I go to see, and looked like clay-caked zombies. It was pretty cool to see, and I really liked their sound!

Slash (Stage 1)
Pure rock 'n roll, I wouldn't call it metal at all. It was kind of cool seeing the legendary Slash live and in the flesh, even if I didn't see him that closely. I was thinking about what I read recently about how he's slept with hundreds of women - "but it wouldn't have been more than 500", according to him. Heh. I wonder if he's still trying to up that number. I was surprised that these guys played some Guns N' Roses songs. I was reading recently (also) about how Axl Rose wrote this song for his then-girlfriend, and I had to wonder if all the rights to Gunners songs were shared by the whole band, not songs whose lyrics were written by Axl. Anyway, they played Sweet Child o' Mine and ended their set with Paradise City.

Slayer (Stage 4)
I tried to see these guys - I really did!! But there were an INSANE amount of people trying to pack into a rather small area in front of Stage 4, and even outside the fences there was a huge milling crowd. Most of us couldn't see anything, so all I could do was listen for a bit. But in the end the "I hate people!" feeling took me over, so I had to get out of that slightly suffocating crowd. It does suck being in a crowd and not being able to see the end of it. So I fled after only a couple of songs had been audibly sampled.

30 Seconds to Mars (Stage 2)
I saw a bit of these guys' set, but mostly what I remember about it (other than the fact that the music sounded pretty decent) was that they collected coins for the New Zealand earthquake victims. They also got a bunch of people from the crowd up on stage for their final song, and one of those guys gave $50.00 to the appeal. It was pretty cool of them, I thought!

One Day as a Lion (Stage 1)
I saw a bit of these guys and it took me ages to realise who I was looking at. Then halfway through a song I recognised Zack De La Rocha's voice and thought, "Ohhh yeah, that's right! This is his new thing!" I wasn't a huge fan of what I heard, but I probably haven't given it enough of a chance. I do love me some Rage Against the Machine.

Queens of the Stone Age (Stage 2)
I've seen/heard from afar (i.e. Big Day Out I didn't attend but listened to from outside the fences) QotSA a few times before, and so I knew what to expect. Goodness. I was sitting a fair distance away and the wind was playing havoc with the sound. But I heard a lot of my favourites, including two surprising inclusions in the set: Mexicola and I Think I Lost My Headache. I was so excited to hear those! The other staple hits were included too - Little Sister, Go With the Flow, No One Knows, etc. No One Knows was dedicated to "all the beautiful ladies out there tonight. I hope you all get laid this evening." Aw, thanks dude! ;) There were also more boobs out during this set, and at one point when the lights on at Josh Homme's request, he called out, "Thank you. Thank you sweetie. You have incredible tits." And then he told the rest of the crowd, "Now don't get upset - you've all got incredible tits too!"

Iron Maiden (Stage 1)
I saw a bit of these guys (they had a great set on stage, so that Bruce Dickinson could run around, leap off, and basically act out some of the stories in the songs. It was quite amusing but fun to see what amounted almost to musical theatre from these guys. I loved all the hopping about/skipping the guitarists did. Three guitarists - epic!! I didn't hear any of my favourite songs, but then I didn't watch the whole set - I had to go off and see the Melvins, and I also left at about 9:45 to get on a train. I'd sort of had enough of being dirty/sunburnt/dehydrated by that point. Anyway...I think Bruce Dickinson's voice is completely amazing - he sounds SOOOO good live! And I loved all the guitar work. In short, these guys were pretty fabulous! On a side-note, this may or may not be the closest I'll ever get to seeing Catherine Wheel's Rob Dickinson up close. Yes, apparently he's related to Bruce. :D

Melvins (Stage 4a)
I was really torn, because I wanted to see all of Iron Maiden's set, but these guys are so LEGENDARY that I didn't want to miss out, just in case this was my last ever chance to see them live. So a short way into Iron Maiden's set, I ducked off to stage 4a to check 'em out. I was happy to see a small crowd, which meant I could get up nice and close and check out the band on stage. Buzz Osborne was on stage in what I can only describe as a nightgown, and I expected to see some fluffy slippers on his feet too (didn't get to check out his footwear). His famous hair was very much in evidence, and instead of its former black it was pretty much all grey. The bassist had some seriously fluffy hair too, and the drummers (yes, there were two!) were dressed in what appeared to be Roman soldier uniform. The two drummers were fantastic to watch - it was like synchronised drumming. They also reminded me of Siamese twin drummers, the way their drumkits sort of met in the middle. It looked t me like there was a left-handed and right-handed drummer, facing each other so as to look truly mirrored, but then I don't know if left-or-right-handedness matters in drumming. Anyway...the music was great, they sounded awesome, and I love Buzz's voice. I couldn't help thinking what Kurt Cobain would think if he were still alive today. And I got an image in my head of how he might've turned out. Would he have evolved into some guy who wore suits on stage or something? Anyway, to Melvins I say: Rock on!!!

HIGHLIGHTS:
Monster Magnet
Stone Sour !!!
Melvins
Iron Maiden

BANDS I WISHED I GOT TO SEE:
Pennywise
Coheed & Cambria
some others I can't remember

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