It isn't always at the large festivals you find good bands. In the smaller venues you sometimes get to hear good music. That's why Metal on Loud sometimes attends these gigs. This one has two bands i heared before, and i know it could be a good evening. When i arrived at the gates of the place to be, there were only 7 people waiting. That's the problem with these small gigs, lots of people don't go, or think it will not be worth the trouble. Half an hour later, when the first band Cathubodua needs to start, there was about 30 people. I always feel sorry when bands have to play for so little audience. But....every band has to start somewhere, though i feel some definitely deserve more credit.
Cathubodua, which is a symphonic metalband, filled the small stage. Being with 6, there was not a lot of place to move. And with in front of the stage a pillar of half a square meter groundsurface, you have to really look out where you place yourself if you want the people to see you. Nevertheless, the band started of strong. The voice of Sara is good, and the variation in songs is also nice. It keeps you alert, and even on this small stage, they use whatever they got to please the crowd. The sound of the violin, played by Katrien makes completes the sound of the band. Whenever this band goes on a bigger stage, i will go and see them again. I think it will be even better.
The second band, Mental Circus, has a reputation of being different every time you see them. This time was no exception. The band wanted to have a compleet blacklight line on stage. The guitarpayer, Stefanie and the vocalist Sanne were dressed in white. Ofcourse the blacklight fitted well to that. The drummer, Philip had one of his days again and wore a green wig. What was a nice add to the band, was that Stefanie was also doing backing vocals now. This gothic metalband always give their best, no matter how big the crowd. Sanne who is a strong vocalist, and even can sing soprano , is always bringing energy in the crowd. She even goes amongst them. But there was a lot of problems with the sound. Half of the time the mic of Sanne went dead. Suddenly there was no more guitar etc.... Not the best soundinstallation at this venue. Despite the troubles, Mental Circus put down a good performance. No doubt i'll see this band again.
And then it's time to level up the noise. The Dutch band Overruled is taking over the stage. By this time the soundengineer of the venue had found the problem with the sound. So the trashing speed metal could blow full force from the speakers. The band is known for their interaction with the public, but due to the circomstances, about 50 people and a bad infrastructure, the energy didn't come over to the crowd. Even though the guys never gave up, and in the end they found a few enthousiastic metalheads , and some shouting and headbanging went on. Also here i have to say that in a different venue, this would have had more impact.
Hitten who was the main act of the evening was up next. This band is a (old school) heavy metalband from Spain. The vocalist, jumped everywhere on stage. But standing on this small stage with 5 people, this was sometimes dangerous for the guitarists and the bass . I found the guys played a few good songs. Aitor Navarro's voice was quite good. But in the end i got the feeling i heared it all before? I kept waiting on that extra but it never came. Can this band convince on a larger stage.....i doubt it.
Rudi Marina Wauters