Wacken Open Air 2023 – When The Metal Gods Decide To Piss On Your Parade, Metalheads Fight Back And Embrace The Mud – Wednesday Highlights August 2nd, 2023

Wacken Open Air 2023 - When The Metal Gods Decide To Piss On Your Parade, Metalheads Fight Back And Embrace The Mud - Wednesday Highlights August 2nd, 2023...

 

All Photos: Wacken Press Pool

 

Holy Hell it seems the Metal Gods we’re angry at Metalheads with a defiant force… Not that it hasn’t happened in years past, but this time torrential rains and flooding made it very hard for Hardcore Metalheads to get into Wacken, the Mecca of Metal festivals this year. When the gods decide to piss all over the biggest Metal festival in Europe, well things get off to a dicey start. Other brethren Metal festivals like Metal Days in Slovenia were hit with the same force of nature. As we all know and can expect with open festivals like these, weather can be unpredictable. 85 Thousands of metal heads we’re supposed to arrive this year, the number says about 50k we were able to make it in before admissions were halted by rain and mudding causing a big concern on the holy grounds.

Either way, the fact that this many made it there was a reason to celebrate somewhat, even if the Wednesday of the Festival had a slower crowd buildup. I can’t imagine the puddles of mudd, the nasty conditions, and the campground’s miserable settings. Thankfully the hard-working Wacken crew did a damn good job making things tolerable for folks. We pick things up on Wednesday where there was plenty of uncertainty leading into the weekend.

Bands like Brazil’s own thrash/death metal Nervosa get things rolling at the Louder Stage, later followed by German Thrash legends Holy Moses who put on a smoldering set. UK’s own Skindred made it to the festival and as always put on a heck of a show. Rain or Stormy clouds didn’t stop the Brits from bringing their energy live. One thing has become clear at this point, some of the fans have accepted Mud as their best friend, embracing the mud they said. Thankfully the overpowering will of Music always unites, even in the most uncertain of conditions.

Later in the evening things get moving faster and louder as the Fins from Helsinki Battle Beast grace the Louder Stage, lead by the charismatic and powerhouse vocals of Noora Louhimo. Rocking her horns attire/outfit, they deliver an enjoyable set with plenty of tunes that make even to the most unassuming metalhad around, decided to headbang their head and dance in glory. Some of the band’s favorite cuts get played in “Straight To The Heart”, “Eye of the Storm” and “King for a Day” to name a few.

The headliner this Wednesday is none other than the Metal Queen herself, Doro Pesch celebrating 40 years in Metal. Germany’s own is no stranger to the grittiness, the toughness that the Metal culture depicts. Her set is filled with special guests as Anthrax Joey Belladona makes an appearance, alongside Blind Guardian’s Hansi Kursch on “Rock Till Death”. Plenty of Warlock’s tunes get played, the likes of “Burning The Witches” and “Metal Racer”. More pals join the stage with Motorhead Mikkey Dee and Phil Campbell helping out in “Love Me Forever”. The Priest classic “Breaking the Law” gets played with special guests Uli Jon Roth and UDO to every fan’s desire for nostalgic metal classics. A great set that pays true homage to a legendary Metal front lady that has stood the test of time, and to this day her name still shines brightly in the halls of The Metal Gods.

The evening concludes with Metal band Beyond the Black over at the Louder Stage putting on an exquisite show with front lady Jennifer Haben, who doubles up on the Magenta Live stream as host as well for the festival, stunningly dressed in her Raven attire and black wings, something to behold. The torch gets passed on to Doom legends Pentagram who provide a worthy end for the evening hitting up some of their classic cuts with “Death Row”, “Sign of the Wolf” and “The Ghoul”. Vocalist Bobby Liebling is always an imposing sight on stage and still proves he can sing and bring it to live. He’s been rocking since the early 70s and at almost 70 years of age, proves age is nothing but a number.

The day which didn’t seem promising, somehow someway the slew of bands and endless amount of stages, carries the Torch that faintly seemed like it would flame out, forward to a Thursday. Here we go…

 

https://www.wacken.com/en/

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