Photo-report coming soon!
One year has passed since my last visit to Brutal Assault festival in a beautiful Czech Republic. I was excited to see this year’s edition and almost all my expectations have been realized. In spite of some negative things (how to be without them, haha!) everything went nice.
Since there are not any direct flights from my city to Czech at all, we had to use bus + train route, which has took around 14 hours to get Prague and then 3-4 hours to get Jaromer (finally). Thus the whole road took about 17-18 hours. But in the evening of August, 7th we entered camping site, placed tents, received bracelets and etc. Due to the long trip I have missed warm up party with: Beast Within The Sound, Monuments of Misanthropy, Root, Gride and Suicidal Tendencies.
As it should be traditionally, I’m gonna start from negative things many fans talking about and those are truly important issues which festival organizers should pay attention to:
First of all: drinking water. There is a lack of drinking water again. I’m sure Brutal Assault should have much more drinking water because of hot summer of August when your head is about to explode because of hellish sun. For sure, somebody could say something a-la “drink beer”; that’s right, but not all people using to drink beer and even from my personal practice as a man who drinking beer, I had to drink water often. And selling water looks not so fair to be honest. Also the fire truck could be used 3-4-5 times per day (moreover, when we speaking about lack of drinking water).
Next thing is the same amount of showers like last year: I do not know why, but this year there were not so huge lines to the showers like last year. But there was another thing: our photographer entered shower cabin at night (cold night) and water ended after hair was wetted so she has been forced to stay 10-15 minutes outside the cabin while some working cabin will be free, she have found working cabin but wtf? Only Extremely Cold water over there, thus our photographer got flu and temperature next day (but I would like to thank to the girl at VIP camp’s BAR for hot water to mix medicines). Due to this reason she was unable to make many photos… So, again – some more shower cabins and some people who could looking out and repair them when they are out of work (the showers are not for free so I’m sure there should be some staff to look for their work).
The toilets – I was surprised this year! The toilets were cleaned about 3 times per day, amazing, very positive thing! (but someone often stole paper, what a shame, dear metalheads, are you serious? Why did you take the toilet paper from the cabins?).
Natural stand: it’s not something expensive for all days ticket but from my personal point of view there could be fixed some good benches instead of those ruined ones when it comes to paid service, maybe somebody will not accept my thoughts but I have such an impression.
At the moment that’s the only “serious” issues, but I have one thing I heard from the fans: of course that’s impossible to make band’s check while nobody plays on the second stage, but sometimes people may hear some band’s check while some other band playing on the neighbor stage. That’s not like criticism but just something like “said by fans”. The same like about the dust, but BA is an open-air festival so you can not to get rid of dust, you know.
The camping is the same like last year’s one, but from my point of view VIP camp could be placed on the hill under the trees (instead of free camp) because it’s impossible to stay under extremely hot sun without any “roof” like a tree or something and VIP camp is almost out of trees (only lucky people are able to place the tent under the tree, you know). So maybe paid camp could be even partially located on the hill instead of current place.
Concluding aforementioned things I can say that small amount of remarks could make Brutal Assault more comfortable for the fans and get higher rank among European festivals.
All in all everything else was perfect: organization, friendly personal and security, almost 20.000 fans (you know, friendly atmosphere like it’s one big family), a wide range of different dishes and drinks. Plus new location Bastion X is a cool thing where you could hide your skeleton while hellish sun burning the ground.
So, my personal impressions from the first day is Cannibal Corpse with their awesome show: several immortal hits and just tight performance. The last song was “Hammer Smashed Face” of course and in spite they had some small mess in the song it was just impressive! Paradise Lost is a Paradise Lost, no more to say, just a cult! Tormentor has a bit weak performance. Of course I cannot miss such names like Armored Saint, Nervochaos and Toxic Holocaust. And the bands I’m not too much in like Jasad (anyway these Indonesian beasts played really brutal set with pretty powerful sound), Obscure Sphinx, Bleed From Within, Anime Torment, Shelter, Steve’n’Seagulls, Ingested, Brujeria, TBDM, Wisdom In Chains, Helmet, powerful Gojira, Whoredom Rife and some more. As you can see the very first day was not enough “brutally extreme” for me personally.
Second day has some more of my personal highlights like Broken Hope, Exhorder (cool but a bit weak show to be honest), (I’ve missed some opener bands because we have found a tent with cool craft beer (APA and IPA) near festival entrance so we have spent some really good time there) Municipal Waste, Dying Fetus (just incredible set with the tight wall of sound) and of course killing machine Marduk with their typical deathmarch! I have missed one band-title, know why? Myrkur – one of highly expected names from Brutal Assault 2018… Of course Myrkur‘s show is out of any description, freezing and memorable, you even unable to headbang because all that you able to do is to stay and listen. But there is one huge “but”: Myrkur probably played just a half of set because of electricity that was switched off because of small fire on the hill. It was really sad but what to do? Just no panic and everything fixed. But Myrkur‘s show is finished. If last year’s hurricane couldn’t stop Sacred Reich completely, this year’s fire stopped Myrkur‘s show. Some other names from the second day are: Godless Truth, Diabolical, Persefone, Counterparts, Blood Incantation, Carnifex, Green Carnation (I wasn’t impressed by their live-performance btw, maybe just because I’m not so huge fan of theirs), Moonspell, Converge (who seems to be most hailed by people around the scene. I do not like their stuff at all but fans gone mad as I seen from the natural stand area), Mortiis, Bolzer and some more.
Third day started not so cool because Hypnos, Inhume and Sadistic Intent were missed by me due to some reasons. But luckily I haven’t missed my top of the day: Pestilence (my neck still feels bad after Pestilence show) – just a killer set of classic songs from one of death metal gods! For a long time I’m not a fan of Behemoth but it was cool to see their show. Top professional attitude, massive and memorable set with a good performance, huge fire from the stage etc. Behemoth is one of those bands that many other bands should try to learn from (I mean behavior on the stage and etc). Mighty Carpathian Forest proves us that Hellhammer/CF spirit is still alive! Just a killer headbanging show with old-school core and punkish attitude. Some other names of the day: Hate, Poppy Seed Grinder, Azarath, At The Gates, Cruachan, Malokarpatan and of course death metal machine Dead Congregation.
Fourth day had much power for me just because my dream to see mighty Hirax became true! Hirax is a Hirax – just an example of pure old-school metal without any compromises and Katon reminded to the fans that metalheads and musicians is a one whole family but not some kind of shit! I think they should play 2 or even 3 hours! People getting mad and Hirax did everything to keep their flame! Hirax performed on Metalgate stage instead main one just like Possessed last year but I’m sure that was requested by the band personally to play on the smaller stage. Of course last day contained some other powerful names like Origin, Unleashed, Messiah (seems like musicians should have some more rehearsals before future gigs because of that hiatus they had), Nocturnus AD, skull-crushing blasphemers Belphegor with their skull-crushing show, Protector, Wardruna (sounds amazing at the night!), Aura Noir and doom metal gods Esoteric (I’ve also missed an Esoteric show because its timing (after midnight) and I really can’t even imagine how could somebody survive through the funeral doom in the deep of the night). Sepultura – it was funny to hear their attempts to play classic Sepultura songs. Well, for me personally Sepultura is dead for a while, but it seems like some people still love them. Maybe those are just “new-age” fans who operate by the band name (a-la “cult band, means they are cool”) because I know no one mature metalhead who could send respect to the nowadays “Sepultura”. Danzig‘ performance was “dry” as well, just a waste of time for me.
Maybe somebody will throw tomatoes to my head but I think (just my personal thoughts) such bands like Laibach, Converge, Ministry, Sepultura, Danzig and Perturbator could be replaced by some worth bands, but we had what we had.
I have missed discussion between Ross Dolan (Immolation) and Jeremy Wagner (Broken Hope) at the KAL stage, I’m sure there was something interesting, and we can check a part of discussion right here – https://www.facebook.com/events/1968188413455429/permalink/2153245271616408/.
All in all, Brutal Assault 2018 was enough memorable and interesting, with some really cool bands, I wish I could check all the bands but as usually – you can’t check every band’s show… For today, Brutal Assault confirmed such bands for 2019: TESTAMENT, MESHUGGAH, NAPALM DEATH, will see what the near future will bring!
Maybe see ya next year! \m/