Photos by Gemma Shaw
Words by Luke Bolton
Day 2 – Friday
The Body are first up on Friday. To start with, the sound isn’t up to scratch, but it slowly turns up and this two-piece churns out some nasty filth. It’s a fine performance. Later on, I was told the story that the actual drummer has a fear of flying, so he booked a boat and half way over, he freaked out and the coastguard had to take him off in a helicopter (Hello, fear of flying! Either this is a joke, or a cruel irony). Anyway, they managed to get a stand-in drummer, and fun was had by all.
Corrections House’s second set is fraught with mystery. Solo material and other pieces…What we see and hear are some of the album tracks intertwined with instrumental performances and a Mike Williams spoken word section. It’s a stream of consciousness work not dissimilar to Charles Bukowski. Mike Scheidt of Yob makes a guest appearance playing acoustic guitar, which makes for a truly unforgettable performance.
Candlemass, performing “Ancient Dreams” by request of Mikael Åkerfeldt of Opeth fame. With a guest appearance by Primordial singer, Candlemass are true professionals, however they aren’t playing Epicus doomicus metallicus, which they did a previous year. I would have preferred a normal set.
Terra Tenebrosa have technical issues. The packed crowd starts to get restless due to a start at 23.30, but it’s nearly a full 30 minutes before they start to play. Unfortunately, it wasn’t worth the wait. The sound is muddy, vocals inaudible and with guitars that sound finer than a crispy pancake, but that’s possibly not Terra Tenebrosa’s fault.
Yet another clash, as 11 Paranioas and Noothgrush play at the same time. On the main stage, Noothgrush bring the crowd to their knees as their discombobulated sludge pounds the 013. I would have thought that Noothgrush’s sound would better suit a smaller room, but you can always tell how good a band’s set was by the merch stall afterwards…and it’s a free for all.
Windhand are riding a wave of popularity as the main stage finds itself packed again, and while their blend of Electric Wizard with female vocals style of doom is not necessarily original, it is played with conviction and style.
Ah Yob, defunct for years but now fully back in swing. Mike Scheidt and crew do not disappoint. What Yob does is truly their own, unique in style and delivery. I don’t know if you can tire watching Yob, there’s not many bands I can say that for.
Old Man Gloom – finally, the day has come when I get to see this band. With a new record NO having me salivating, this was a band I wasn’t going to miss. Another super group of sorts, their sound is a perfect combination of their other groups with a touch of the sublime. They thundered through the mainstage, and I, for one, am left with a smile on my face.
Indian provide a nasty taste of low-end riffery that is not uncommon these days, and the execution is there. I find it hard to get overly excited, as I have been blessed with so much good music over the past few days, yet it’s hard to find a negative word about them.
-(16)- bring the sludge to the Het Patronat. However, I had to run off to watch Inter Arma – I think they need a mention, they had a high octane performance, possibly best of the day, maybe the whole festival!
Horse Latitudes brought the double bass, a slow beating doom with well performed vocals from the drummer. They were on at the same time as A Storm Of Light, so I only managed to catch ASOL’s last song! But I have seen them many times before, so I am sure they put on an awesome performance!
Bolzer starts off the Afterburner. We turn up late after a mix up with the Roadburn bus. By the time we arrive, the room is packed to bursting. Still from the outskirts, the pulverizing, hate-filled blackened metal is blasted with reckless abandon, and everyone within earshot is treated to the immense pleasures that Bolzer offers.
With Yob‘s second set, we are treated to some new material, which is truly a pleasure, and then a collection of older favourites.
Special mentions – New Keepers of the Water Towers produce some progressive space, alt-rock metal, not dissimilar to Mastodon’s crack the skye vibe. The singer/guitarist is seen with one shoe onstage…why? That’s right, he’s playing the keyboard on the floor with his foot. The crowd is sparse, but immersed in their set.
Triptykon, Tom G warriors, a follow on group from Celtic Frost, playing material from Tom G’s vast back catalogue. We are treated to some old Celtic Frost and even Hellhammer.
Morne are left with closing the Roadburn main stage, a daunting task. Even though it’s barely half full, they produce some blissful doom by way of Isis alt rock inspired metal. With a much thinner guitar, the sound cuts through the night air, leaving Morne a perfect closure for the Afterburner.