Ach mein Gott! It's Rammstein!

Sonisphere 2010 review

published: Tue 3rd Aug 2010


Friday 30th July to Sunday 1st August 2010
Knebworth House, Hertfordshire, SG1 2AX, England MAP
£157.50 with camping, £40 Fri, £60 Sat/Sun
daily capacity: 60000
last updated: Mon 26th Jul 2010

Saturday is dominated by one of the most incredible live shows I've ever seen, the crazy flame fuelled antics of Rammstein, but before all that....

We have a lazy start to the hot morning, electing to open our day's entertainment with Heavens Basement who are a guitarist down due to a broken finger, but 'Misunderstood' sounds just as good even with the lack of personnel.

around the festival site (2)
We pause for a while to watch the crazy antics of Blaas Of Glory from Holland, who draw a crowd for an amused singalong, a roving bunch of metal misfits, perfect.

Soulfly get us participative with some hands in the air praise of the Max Cavalera fronted band who still have me hankering for his return to Sepultura. Again there's line-up changes with Johny Chow of Cavalera Conspiracy filling the shoes of Bobby Burns.

A siren's wail brings the faithful to the Apollo stage for Anthrax who fill the field for the first time, it's a huge crowd. It's noticeable how many acts over the weekend have greying hair and widening waistlines, but Anthrax show no sign of slowing with an impressively heavy set. Highlights include 'Got the Time' with the older metalheads around me singing the "Chicken On My Head" line. 'AntiSocial' gets us all yellin' along, and a circle pit opens up for a war dance to 'Indians'. The weather's been okay but this could, "Stir This Shit Up!" They close their ear grinning set with 'I Am The Law'.

Papa Roach
My daughter and I remain at the main Apollo stage for Papa Roach missing Fear Factory (don't ask) and the American act deliver 10 track opening with 'Getting Away With Murder'and ending with 'Last Resort'. We get to see lead singer Jacoby's tiny nipples after the usual boob flashes on the big screens get a bigger cheer than his inflated ego. I wasn't expecting to enjoy them but they proved a worthy addition to the line-up, they love to swear at us, and go up in my estimation when they recommend Gallows over Motley Crue.

I remain in front of the main stage for a teenage singalong to Good Charlotte, the crowd's a lot smaller and their fans cosisting of mainly females rabid! Beside me my teenager daughter rips through songs such as 'My Bloody Valentine' 'Boys And Girls' and 'So Predictable' and we're told that "the UK has the best bands and the best girls" before ending on 'Young & Hopeless'. Our sullen teenager has suddenly perked up and from this point on enjoys the festival.

Skunk Anansie
Skunk Anansie are as good as ever. Lead singer Skin still looks gorgeous, and new material 'My Ugly Boy' sits well alongside 'Charlie Big Potato, 'Little Baby Swastikkka', and 'Weak' which ends in Skin stage diving into the crowd. It's great to see them back again.

Danes Kellermensch sound interesting, a string section and distorted drums punctuates their sound and it's great stuff to tuck into a Dorset Wrap and an ale.

Placebo are, slowly over the years, getting harder edged. Dressed in white, and once again taking to the stage with an expanded line-up Brian looks a bit weird in a beanie hat and glasses and his image is replicated on a screen behind the band in lurid colours.'Scared Of Girls' is a surprise in the set, and the first of the day's Nirvana cover comes with 'All Apologies'. I leave before the end but their edgy delivery of 'Battle For The Sun', Nancy Boy', and more have left me wanting more.

But there's no way I'm missing Corey Taylor, and the tent gets so packed that we can only just squeeze in. Corey say's he has no clear plan what he's going to play, and after Elton John's 'Tiny Dancer' I'm starting to wonder if we've all made the right choice, Cash's 'Give My Love To Rose', and Corey's own 'Bother' bring me around. Corey sounds genuinely moved by the reaction of "Corey! Corey!". He follows up with a hearfelt 'Snuff' dedicated to "my brother" Slipknot bassist Paul Gray. Jason Christopher joins him for Chris Isaak's Wicked Game before airing Nirvana's 'Polly' and The Ramone's 'Outsider' A great second full acoustic gig following the first two weeks ago in LA.

We start watching Motley Crue we last the whole of 'Dr Feelgood' Vince Neil's voice sounds shit like he's on too much helium, and Tommy Lee is hidden under his kit. Yawn! I remember to metalheads Motley Crue always were a bit of a joke, no change here then. We race off to Gallows and proper rock. The crowd's small, and Gallows diss The Crue "I'm fuckin' glad I'm not Motley Crue!" before dedicating songs to a little kid on his dad's shoulders. Big hitters like 'London is the Reason', 'Leeches, 'Gold Dust' and a power driven 'In the Belly of a Shark' leave us happy. Back on the Saturn stage Crue are murdering 'Girls! Girls! Girls!' but the aural pain is salved by a lot of topless nudity from the audience.

The huge German flag and stirring music means one thing. Up next are the mighty Rammstein, no idea what the hell we singalong to half the time, but sing we do, to the impressively heavy tunes that leak Kraftwerk synths at the edges with strobes and a split level stage of some industrial plant. The show is just an awesome visual and physical feast, without the ribcage rattling bass, and guitar licks that soar!

From the first teutonic utterances from the luminated mouth of lead singer Till Lindemann we know this is going to be a bit different. Waves of heat from huge jets of pyros wash over us, and steam and smoke blast up into the heavens, as sweaty body writhe around us arms aloft chanting gobbledigook - it's like being in hell.

Lindemann shoots fireworks and flame over us, guys get flamethrowered, and a giant penis jettisons foam and ticket tape all over us, at one point the keyboardist takes to the sea in an inflatable, joined by a random with a Union Jack which gets a cheer, I'm not sure if that was before or after he got nuked in a bath, and decided to play keyboards from a treadmill. Ach mein Gott! This is one of the greatest shows I've ever seen, astonishing!

We're too bushed to hear Therapy? deliver the whole of 'Troublegum' or see Feeder in their Renegades guise, and make for our beds to dream of fireballs.

review by: Scott Williams

photos by: Karen Williams / Sarah Collie / unknown fan

Friday 30th July to Sunday 1st August 2010
Knebworth House, Hertfordshire, SG1 2AX, England MAP
£157.50 with camping, £40 Fri, £60 Sat/Sun
daily capacity: 60000
last updated: Mon 26th Jul 2010

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