Battle Of The Bands: Semi Final
Nadir, Ivory Tower, Scarfade, Slave At God, Custom Made Noise, Fading Reality
An Club, Athens, Greece

I have a special interest in any kind of music connected to the Greek scene. So, I do appreciate gigs that get the fans to know more Greek groups, especially when, there is a global award – such as grabbing the chance to play live at the biggest heavy metal open air in the world – Wacken!!!

Thanks to Loud Sound Productions and An Club, some new Greek metal bands had the opportunity to show us what they can do on stage!

On Sunday 22 February, I decided to have a look at that live. I was actually disappointed! Not because of the bands, but because of the crowd.

First of all, I thought there would be so many people attending that gig – I mean, this is the WOA that we’re talking about! Wouldn’t you want to know the band representing your country in a worldwide festival? Probably not… Wouldn’t you want to support the local scene? I guess not… Anyway, the bands had brought their “friends”, so it wasn’t a total disaster.

That’s the second disapointment! After each band’s show, the band members with their friends were leaving the club… What kind of “battle” is that? I just didn’t get the meaning of the whole show. Okay, some of the people got tired… got bored… didn’t like the show… The band members were leaving? That was so nice of them, supporting the whole institution.

So, let’s get to the “music” part. I was impressed by the metal genre most of the bands were up to! I thought that Greece “produces” heavy/power metal bands, but most of Sunday’s groups were more of a hardcore/death kind.

Okay, each group had 25 minutes to make us headbang.

Fading Reality were there to break the metalcore ice. Their soft sound among the strong, groovy sound of the rest of the bands kept them away from our afterward chats. They were good, but it’s sad having another classic-stereotyped band, especially in Greece. I do enjoy listening to bands like this one, but they have to modernize their sound so that they can keep up with the scene.

Custom Made Noise really had the feeling! Lots of people in a total metalcore situation, breaking everything around! Yes, the crowd loved them! But did they love the crowd? They performed very well indeed, but was it a studio session or a live? I mean… You’ll have to wake the metalheads up, not just sing and solo on your own up there!
Although they lighted a spark, made us feel the groove and kept us alive, but we didn’t get to  break our necks yet.

After that it was Slave At God’s turn to show us right! Those guys were true metalheads! I’m not much of a death metalhead, but I just couldn’t stop moving my head! Very good death vocals, grunts and growls, nice on stage touch and you could just feel the energy of the band transferring to the crowd making it go berserk.

Scarfade ! Well, those guys have friends! People singing along with them, headbanging the whole time! I’m not really sure either you have to be social or a great musician, so that you can be known. I mean – let’s face it! History speaks for herself! There are countless groups out there, selling countless of copies that don’t have much to say!

After that death metal party, there were the Ivory Tower to remind us of good old school heavy metal! Two guitars, the power voice of Dimitris Theodorou and the memories of An Club, made us remember old – happy metal days. Their pro-techniques and the spirit among the members were really impressive!

And finally the “weirdos” of the night – Nadir! I would never believe that I could see such a live performance at battle of the bands. Those guys totally have it! Pale make up, tribal tattoos, fishnet and eyeliners. I didn’t really wait a music breakout from them, because of the whole style. I thought they would just spend their time fooling around, using make up staff and strange stage-lights to impress the crowd. Well… I was so wrong! The deep low vocals of Reana with some death shouts and the stable keyboards’ notes of Prince were very breathtaking… Many Type O Negative & Paradise Lost tips… Next time I hope they use some make up remover just before getting on stage, so that we can focus on their music.

It really was a great gig after all. Let’s face it, there are a lot of great musicians out there. Next time, I hope the greeks support their scene!

Christina Marinou.