Tuesday, 12 June 2018

Sweden Rock Festival 2018

TL;DR - Saw six bands, bought two shirts, ate lots of food, got badly burned and there was an unusual amount of puke in the camp.

Early on Tuesday 5th we packed ourselves into two cars and drove south. We arrived around 1pm and started setting up the tents and the camp and then it was time for music and alcohol before we went off to find food and exchange our tickets for wrist bands. I also decided to buy this year's shirt early because I knew I was getting it - might as well get it the first day. Nothing more incredibly exciting happened the first day there. We arrived, we had alcohol, we met and greeted a lot of people we never saw again and there was the annual hugging party when regular camp members from around the country showed up one after the other. The first night was cold but not as cold as they have been other years.

Scrambled out of the tent before 8am the next day because I was burning up. For once I wasn't the first one up and we walked off to buy ourselves some breakfast (that coffee saves lives). And then we were back to what we were doing the first day - music and alcohol and occasionally walking away to find food. The camp next door came over with an inflatable sofa which we had a lot of fun with. We didn't go inside the festival area until dark. The only band we wanted to see this day was Hardcore Superstar. They were as good as always. Nothing new on the horizon. Though I haven't listened much to their two latest albums so there were a bunch of songs I didn't recognise.

Same deal next day. Got up crazy early and went for breakfast. After some music and alcohol we went to the festival area pretty early to see In This Moment. They were this year's highlight for me and that concert was amazing. Easily the best of the year.
Afterwards I bought one of their t-shirts and then we went to find food and the went back to the camp. In the evening we returned to the festival area to see Helloween and Iron Maiden. I have seen Helloween before and they were just as boring as the last time I saw them. For Maiden the area was packed with people. We stayed for about an hour, maybe less. Maiden played for two hours, but we were pretty far back and the wind was in the wrong direction so the sound came off all garbled which kind of ruined the experience. None of us were major Maiden fans either. So we went back to the camp.

Friday was a slow day. We spent most of the day in camp and people were getting tired. The most fun thing that happened this day was when J told us of his side quest mission to find a hat. He found a pretty pink one which he exchanged for a sock. Don't ask.
In the evening we went to the festival area to see Stone Sour. They were really good, and made for a lot of nice sing-along, especially to Through Glass. Later in the evening Ozzy was playing but most of us decided to skip him since we had already seen him as part of Black Sabbath when they played a couple years back. Apparently the concert wasn't very good, and it seemed to be the general opinion that Zak Wylde took over too much.

We decided to go home on Saturday evening. The only thing I had planned for this day was to see Tarja. But I also went to the area with Toni early in the day to see 69 Eyes, which is what caused my shoulders to get really badly burned (skin falling off bad). I'm not a big 69 Eyes fan, and listening to them on CD always makes me feel like they're a bit too much. But they were much better live.
Back at camp it was slow. More than one of the members were sleeping most of the day and the rest of us were pretty tired. An hour before Tarja started we packed up what we were bringing back home with us (Toni and I decided to retire our tent and air mattress). Tarja was great and the sound was good. With her voice and the high notes she takes the sound could easily have been coming off bad but it was really good.
After Tarja we went to the car and started the journey home. Once again we skipped Judas Priest (could they just for once not end the festival please?) We arrived home around five in the morning and immediately went to bed. Like always, the shower after waking up was the best thing ever.

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