Eifel Even if the questionable weather made it tricky for camping festival fans to pack their weekend wear, the mood was top for the some 80,000 fans at the opening of Rock Am Ring music fest on Friday.
Dust, mud and blazing sunshine: Experienced festival visitors know that if you pack your bag for a short music fest trip with camping, three things must never be missing - sandals, hiking boots and rubber boots. This year's edition of Rock am Ring tested the limits of how well guests were weather-proofed right from the start on Friday. It caused even the most advanced rockers to gaze in confusion at the clothes they had brought along. The 80,000 or so fans dressed in a colorful mix of summer wear and oilskin jackets, celebrating the music festival in the Eifel. However, the unstable weather with rain showers, gusts of wind and short downpours did not kill the mood. With visibly good-humored visitors, living legends and a promising line-up, the festival got off to a brilliant start in the Eifel.
On three stages, the fans expect heavyweights like Die Ärzte, Slayer and Slipknot this weekend. It started on Friday at 2 pm with Palisades, who played on the Crater Stage. While the five musicians from Virginia beat up the ears of the first audience standing in front of the Crater Stage with booming post-hardcore, a quartet from the region took to a smaller stage in front of the gates of the festival.
A band from Bonn and Meckenheim called All My Pride played at the festival, having won the slot in a competition. The local heroes were honored with much applause. Meanwhile, the Parisians of Fiend inaugurated the Alternastage. Playing for a sparse audience, they weren’t really convincing with their mixture of psychedelic stoner rock and punk. But for Drangsal on the Crater Stage, it was much more crowded. The platinum blonde singer made an optical statement with a pink ruffled shirt and a face covered with glittering stones that perfectly underlined the New Wave character of his music - located somewhere between Alphaville and Fleetwood Mac in the times of "Tango in the Night”.
Another highlight of the day, especially for fans of classic rock, was the performance of Deadland Ritual. A small downer, however, was that the show of the supergroup with Black Sabbath bassist Geezer Butler and Steve Stevens, guitarist of Billy Idol, was postponed by almost half an hour because the band had arrived too late on the festival grounds. But everything was forgiven when the living legends played "War Pigs" by Black Sabbath.
Afterwards there was pure women power on two stages in parallel: Halestorm wrapped the crowd with jagged hard rock to match the rain and gusts of wind, while Against The Current from New York got their audience dancing with pop. Slash, who is on tour with Miles Kennedy from Alter Bridge, and the US rockers from Tool, who decided to kick off Rock am Ring with their progressive metal, were also duly celebrated in the evening.
(Orig. text: Dennis Sennekamp, Translation: ck)