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ROADBURN FESTIVAL 2022 • THE SPARK: Wednesday, April 20th

- Burn your burdens in the Temple of Rebranded Ignition! -

Temple Fang

We all know the thing that happened. It has changed all of our lifes in multiple small, significant and/or dramatic ways. But given that we're all sick of it - and of it still not being over for good - I will skip the potentially lengthy sermon here.

Ultimately we all feel that live music was painfully missing and that especially the last regular - what an inappropriate term here - Roadburn Festival seems to have been lifetimes ago.
Somehow I still doubted that it would happen or that I could finally get the thing too, so it was only when I was in the car, on my way from Northern Germany to the South of the Netherlands, that I truly knew: It's on! Roadburn, fuck yes, Roadburn!

Seemingly the whole inner city of Tilburg is a construction site right now, which also had some effects on the festival venues (there were two new stages and one temporarily moved), respectively the otherwise possible shortcuts between them.

For tonight however it was just three bands on the Next Stage (formerly known as Green Room), the smaller of the two stages in the 013 venue.
That was not the only thing which officially got a new name now, since the successor of the Hard Rock Hide-Out warm-up party in the Cul de Sac bar for some legal reason isn't called Ignition any longer, yet maybe eben more on point: The Spark.

Radar Men From The Moon

The honour of enkindling it was mainly in Dutch hands, starting with one of those bands, which can always surprise you with a new line-up or direction. Tonight Radar Men From The Moon showed up with bass, two guitars, two drummers and a vocalist and delivered a show which followed their last studio album "The Bestial Light" and in a way also their own 2017 collaboration with Gnod, Temple Ov BBV.
It was a massive machine of heavy psych, kraut-o-matik and industrial metal with an agitative punk / hardcore attitude. And just the right thing to thrust all those who might have had a break of many months or even several years long break from festivals or live music in general back into the carhatically pummeling joy of having bass and noise pumped through your whole body.

Maggot Heart

The spirit of waking everybody up was continued with the dry and dirty post-punk hard rock of Linnéa Olssons Maggot Heart. Due to the giantism of RMFTM before, it took me a song or two two fully adjust to the raw rock'n'roll approach of the trio. But when it kicked in, there was no stopping this wild ride, on which all three instruments and the singer's high, somehow piercing and snotty voice seemed to be in a constant fight of who would be in charge of the crop that whipped it forward. Banger!

Temple Fang

The third band on the bill had to cancel due to a positive (you know what kind of) test. Since there is no alternative program on Wednesday anyway, I didn't bother to prepare myself for them at all, so Bad Breeding was the only previously announced band on the whole running order I didn't know and didn't look up anything about before the festival. So while I feel sorry for their situation, I naturally felt rather indifferent to what might have been missing musically now and was instead happy to see the openers of the 2019 warm-up show return.

And boy, Temple Fang are such a headliner now! Driven by the power of a Rickenbacher bass and bonkers drumming, crowned by awesome vocal harmonies and easily one of - if not the - greatest lead guitar performances of the whole festival, the epic jams of the quartet were now driving your consciousness to even more unexplored spaces than they already did three years ago. These guys just sound like a legit rock legend straight from the 1970s in all the best ways. With their show Roadburn in all its glory really began for me.

The only cruel thing about it was to see a copy of their fantastic "Fang Temple" record laughing at me from the merch table, while I'm still waiting for the pre-order. Not the only time this would happen during the festival.

Even though there have been warm-up shows with line-ups which added more variety to the normal Roadburn range (which sounds almost impossible, I know, but just think of the speed metal attack with Speed Queen and Bütcher in 2018!), this was a perfect night to get back into the the swing.

Speaking of that: Tomorrow it's back to work for me again, and I have no idea how to keep all that sweet festival memories from racing through my head all the time, haha. But more about those in the coming reviews of the following four Roadburn days! (Please be patient, there will come other stuff inbetween.)

reviews of the other festival days:

- Tumult of magic, turmoil of transcendence. -

- One day you will find me here
Hiding behind the sun with a thousand loaded guns -

- The call of a thousandfold sounds:
Once upon a time in the Church of Cartography -

- Sinner get jazzy! Jammer get heavy! -

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