American Head Charge, an American groove metal band who – just like Coal Chamber - did a comeback on Napalm Records, were announced as co-headliners, but had to cancel the show. They got replaced by two smaller bands. The show started already at 7 pm and BLOOD RUNS DEEP from Switzerland had to play the opener. As I arrived only at 7:45, I missed this gig entirely and can’t write anything about it. The second band of this evening were DIABLO BLVD from Belgium. This band played a well done mixture of hard rock and heavy metal, but somehow they didn’t bring the audience to catch fire. Obi thought that the musicians looked like the Luxemburgish band The Barcodes. Anyway they had quite a rocker image and I thought that this was like a heavier version of Volbeat. At the end of the show, the singer said that this surely was the worst audience of his career, but that he enjoyed the show nevertheless.
The situation wasn’t easy for the opening acts. First of all, the audience came to see Coal Chamber and no one else. Secondly, lots of people preferred to enjoy the last sunrays of the still warm evening. That wasn’t too good for the American hard rock band SOIL. The interest wasn’t too big and only half of the spectators were inside. The band gave its best to excite the audience, but all efforts were in vain. After each song, there was a decent applause, but nothing more. Only the last track, a cover version of Ram Jam’s ‘Black Betty’, got a better response. It’s a pity that the cover version is more popular than the band’s own music.
Finally the situation completely changed when COAL CHAMBER started to play at 9:45 pm. OK, it started to get darker and chillier outside, but that wasn’t all. Coal Chamber are still playing groove metal as they did at the turn of the millennium. Surely this sound (especially the monotonous guitar riffs) hasn’t passed the test of time, but it was entertaining nevertheless. Not only because Nadja Peulen is the world second prettiest bass player (there is still Nathalie Haas from Lost In Pain), but the band was acting in an absolute professional way on stage. The band has a huge song repertoire and the audience (a big amount them looked as if they could act in a Mad Max or the Lost Boys movie) was extremely familiar with the material. The band presented a balanced choice of old and new material, but songs from the first self-titled album (1997) were the audience’s favourite ones. I really was surprised by myself that I amused this oldies party so much.
June is a good and exciting month for Luxemburg’s metal community. There are still great bands this month like Testament, Exodus, Mastodon, Judas Priest, Motörhead,… that will visit us. But yesterday again, you heard more people speak French than Luxemburgish. On shows, I have often the impression that there are more spectators from France and Belgium than from Luxemburg. Our neighbours are of course welcome, but it’s a pity that the national music fans don’t show too much interest in the shows. Luxemburg has namely nowadays a really hot concert scene and the offer is not only bigger, but much more various than a quarter of a century ago.