Thursday, 6 May 2010

Liberation Day A True Celebration

In The Netherlands we celebrate the liberation of our country at the end of World War II every 5th of May or as we call it Liberation Day. It's a nation wide official holiday every 5 years and so this year I was off as well (the government wants to go back to a yearly official holiday which I support completely of course!). And what's a celebration without music? So cities throughout the country have liberation festivals and of course our capital is one of them. A great chance to check out bands like Moss, The Mad Trist and Gotcha! Allstars.

Liberation Festival 2010 on Dam Square Amsterdam, May 5 2010
There were two stages close to each other with the main stage on Dam square. I only knew the bands on the main stage and that bill didn't look bad at all: Moss, The Tunes, The Mad Trist, Junkie XL, Ed Kowalczyk, Gotcha! Allstars and Giovanca. So we headed to the center to check them out and enjoy a little sun while we're there.

Moss (Ronald Says 8 out of 10)
By the time we arrived they already started playing. I wanted to see this band for quite a while since I love their highly acclaimed album that they released last year. And they sure didn't disappoint me. They played a tight balanced set and their harmonies sounded live just as good as they do on the album. I'm sure they won over some new fans. Can't wait to see them in Paradiso next month.

We wandered about for a while thinking that The Tunes probably wasn't my cup of tea. By the time we returned we still could catch a few songs to find out I was right. But I was pretty sure that I was gonna like the next band.

The Mad Trist (Ronald Says 7 out of 10)
And they sure kicked ass. A great heavy set of stoner rock filled with roaring guitars and pounding drums. It does sound a lot like Queens of the Stone Age, even singer Arthur von Berg copies the singing style of Josh Homme. The songs also don't offer a lot of variety. So hopefully they will develop their own sound in the years to come and live up to the potential they showed.

Then it was time to check out our favourite tapas bar in town 'Catala' and skip Junkie XL and Ed Kowalczyk. Not too bad since I have seen Junkie XL a few times already and he moved into a direction that I'm not too fond of. I lost interest in Kowalczyk ages ago. After great food and drinks smelling like garlic from a mile away because of that delicious aioli we returned to get ready for a party.

Gotcha! All Stars (Ronald Says 8 out of 10)
And a party it was going to be. This legendary band from the early 90s has returned with a vengeance. The stage was filled up to the last square meter with instruments and musicians. Their only goal was to show us and themselves a good time. A funk and rock show that would make George Clinton proud. And what a surprise when they brought singer Mary Griffin to join them on stage. I saw her in August singing with Dr. Funkenstein himself as well. In the end I don't think anyone could stand still and although it was cold with the sun down it sure was a hot show.

After this great performance we decided to skip Giovanca and call it a day. Hopefully next year when liberation day will be a yearly holiday again the bands will be just as interesting. What a great way to celebrate freedom!

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