Saturday, 29 August 2009

Lowlands Day 3: Busy Day

Oh yeah! My neighbours are awake again at 8.30. This time no fried eggs but bad jokes and stupid conversation. So we were early at the festival site to have breakfast and buys some CD's. And on to to the first gig to wake us up.

Lowlands Festival Day 3 Bigginghuizen, August 23 2009

Elle Bandita (Ronald Says 7 out of 10)
And no better way to wake you up than by local rock bitch Ella Bandita. With her in-your-face-rock and her high energy level she sure knows how to get everyone's attention. Not the most subtle songs or most original but a nice performance. You got to appreciate their effort and passion although the cliche rock poses can be a bit too much.

De Staat (Ronald Says 8 out of 10)
Together with yesterday's Kyteman this band definitely had a great year. Their highly acclaimed record "Wait For Evolution" did well and got them to play may festivals. And that shows since they play a very professional set with guest drummer Kyteman's Bram Hakkens and 'Neger des Heils' Bas Bron. The tent is fully packed and most people stay until the end. Sometimes songs do sound a bit alike but most of all it's a very good performance. Well done by these Dutch guys.

Dio & the Madd (Ronald Says 7 out of 10)
The Madd make old Beatles inspired beat music including the silly moves. Their songs are usually quite happy and up tempo. This is also their weakness since there's not a lot of diversity. But the band are enjoying themselves a lot especially when rapper Dio joins them and they finally win the crowd over.

Drive Like maria (Ronald Says 8 out of 10)
I really have a weak spot for this band. Love their 70s rock inspired heavy rocking album "Elmwood" and they blew me away when I saw them live for the first time a while ago. So maybe their sound isn't very original and they have borrowed a lot from the likes of Led Zeppelin and Queens of the Stone Age. But these guys and girl sure know how to play some big fat grooves and put a up a lively rock show. Too bad they were only allowed to play half an hour.

Eagles of Death Metal (Ronald Says 7 out of 10)
What can you do when Jesse "Boots Electric" Hughes is on stage but love him? Even as stoned as he was today he still is the amusing and charming guy that he is. Although today the stage and tent was too big for them they still managed to entertain the crowd with their boogies and Jesse's moves. But because of the big stage and his walking around he needed too much time in between songs so the performance never really took off. Not their best performance but fun nevertheless.

Bloc Party (Ronald Says 9 out of 10)
These guys get better evertime I see them this year. Although not all of their music is always easy with all the hooks and twists they still managed to get a fully packed Alpha tent to dance all the way into the back. Frontman and singer Kele Okereke was all smiles and the appealing young man he always is and enjoying himself a lot. Although the hit songs of the first album like "Helicopter" and "Banquet" resulted in the biggest response of the crowd it seemed everyone knew most of the songs and this turned out into a great show.

Grace Jones (Ronald Says 8 out of 10)
I deliberately missed her on Rock Werchter since I knew she was performing on Lowlands as well. Unfortunately her set overlapped with the Arctic Monkeys so I couldn't stay throughout the whole show. But the part that I saw was highly entertaining. She looks stunning for her age and her exceptional voice is still strong. She definitely knows how to put up a show. Laser beams, changing wardrobes in between songs including very creative hats and a perfect performance. Very impressive and I'm sure she made some new fans.

Arctic Monkeys (Ronald Says 9 out of 10)
What can you say about the Arctic Monkeys that hasn't already been said? Every new album and show I'm struck again by the genious of singer Alex Turner. He must be one of the most talented musicians of today's music scene with an unmistakable voice and sound. His untouched almost cold and arrogant stage attitude isn't annoying but makes him even more intriguing and mysterious. And it's not an image. This is who he is. Maybe to protect him from the dark outside world as he sees it since the songs of the new album are even more dark and gloomy. The show nears perfection but may not have been the big smashing closing act of the festival. Instead they send us away with a heavy mind.

But after a nice beer we're all happy again. Aching, tired but oh so happy since this weekend just got better and better. Not enough headliners? Who cares! If bands play on this high level you don't need a program packed with big headliners to have a great time and enjoy some quality music.

Lowlands Day 1 Review >
Lowlands Day 2 Review >

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