Sunday, April 28, 2002 @ 10:54 PM
Hellfest - Exodus, Sadistic In
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Well, Hellfest happened on March 23rd. This massive little show had some pretty good bands such as Exodus, Sadistic Intent, Agent Steele and Prototype to a name a few. Maybe you have heard of them and maybe you haven't. Well, I will be very straightforward and say I went in with some very high expectations. After being blown away by November to Dismember, I imagined something similar but on a more local and smaller scale. What I had not encountered was a lot of maltreatment and unpreparedness on the part of the venue. Unfortunately those negative events will forever overshadow my view of the show. But first lets concentrate on the positive, the bands.
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One of the most memorable bands on that night were Sadistic Intent, Engraved, Dreams of Damnation and Prototype. These bands, from what I saw, had the most energy and had the crowd in their hands. Sadistic Intent was actually the first band that night to really get people into it. Once they came on people started crowd surfing, moshpitting and just going nuts. Their set was the first in many energetic ones that followed. Sadistic Intent played maybe 8 songs, since their set was only 45 minutes long. They had a great response to from the crowd that gathered around to see them. Once their set was finished alot of people got up to the mic to yell, "SADISTIC FUCKING INTENT!!!" they had to be one of the crowd favorites that night.
Dreams of Damnation where also another band that had it going good that night. I don't really know much about this band but I can assure you they were good. They were led by "The Iron Maidens" front woman who screamed out some really good death metal growls and was very cool on stage. Their set was also under some bad luck as their sound was mostly treble and not enough bass. From what I could hear it was good and thrashy. Prototype was one of the many power metal bands there but they had a sound that reminded me of "Dark Tranquility" somewhat. They had some good solos and riffs. They were in my opinion the better "Power Metal" bands there that night. I honestly can not recall their set because that was the first time I saw them, but if I remembered their name, then they must have been good.
Engraved was the last band before I got booted for being "under-age," and the one thing I remember about this band was that they had one huge fucking pit!
The pit took up about 3/4ths of the room and complete blew me away. They were just total death/thrash and just rocked. I only saw maybe 30 minutes of the set because once I turned around I was being asked for a wristband, and got kicked out for not being 21. So I can't really comment much on the main headliners set, who was Exodus of course, but while I was outside waiting for my friend, I talked to some people who were leaving DURING the Exodus set, and they told me that the sound was just unbearable. They heard nothing but treble, and nothing else. I thought it was kinda sad how they didn't try to improve the sound or even give the performers a decent stage. They made the main stage bands play on the floor, which meant people on the back could not see one thing. All they saw was a huge crowd gathered in one area and nothing else.
The night could have gone sooo much better if there was someone in charge of the stuff that was going on. But I guess that place was very new to the style of music and people that were there. Like I said before, the show is going to overshadowed by many negative things, but at least there were good performers there and had a good crowd going, too. I honestly believe that the crowd would have been 3 times bigger if it wasn't for the age restrictions. As for the maltreatments of the people, I have to say the security there had no idea about what goes on at a metal show. They were getting people for moshing and even dragging people out of starting pits. One guy I saw outside, was dragged out by his hair for supposedly starting a "fight." Like I said, the security was not ready, I believe, for that crowd or even briefed on what was going to happen, but what happened, happened. In all, it was an interesting experience.