Imagine a small village, one church, one baker, some local fast food company’s and some bars. And in one of these bars a party is brewing. It is quite clear you wouldn’t expect that in a few minutes some furious bands would be about to blast metal up our asses. We were promised the best of the local scene in one night, so off course we needed to see this up close and personal and up close and personal it was. The Salerno Bar is a small bar with a great ambiance, the typical bar you would expect in a village like this. They even had a bright pink stripping pole, which immediately is a big plus. If there actually were strippers the party would be complete.
In a few minutes the first band was about to begin, the bar was filling up with people that definitely were in the party vibe. As soon Hammered started to play their vibrant mix of punk-thrash soft headbanging rapidly changed into some really chaotic moshpits. Hammered is a band that doesn’t take everything too serious, and this definitely isn’t a no-go. The humoristic approach of this band really gets the laughs from the audience, and not in the wrong way. The band isn’t always that tight, but don’t worry, it isn’t annoying at all. Somehow it fits in the music and the whole vibe around this band. Confetti was thrown around and now the venue is totally changed into a party zone. Hammered throws classical thrash riffs but they all come with the typical punk flavor. No, it’s not new. But god damn this was music to make you party hard. Warning, don’t enter this party zone without any usage of alcoholic beverages.
As we were recovering from this very furious start. We roll into a completely different approach to metal from Mistral. Of course before the show we did some Facebook research and we found a completely new genre at the page from Mistral. Schizophrenic metal, let’s hope it’s not two faced though. Mistral started their set with loads of energy, energy that wasn’t weakened until the end of the show. Their frontman gets in your face like a madman, this guy is screaming and growling like its life depends on it. The band runs you over like a stampede, and we got to know what schizophrenic metal is. The band easily switches from machine gun guitars to really grooving riffs with using influences from a lot of different kind of genres what makes this band very variable. They tend to create an organized chaos on the stage and make sure they give the audience exactly the opposite of what is expected. Their songs consist of many layers and it seems like every band member had its input which revolves in songs that constantly switch from genre and feeling throughout the set. To us it felt renewing, but we still think this is a love it or hate it band. It is noticed that they mean the stuff they do, they’re angry and up in your face. We definitely think we’re going to see more of this band.
The 3rd band is coincidentally named The Devil’s 3rd. Not to be mistaken with The Devil’s Turd when pronouncing it. When the band started the frontman Frans Wijnen ran on the stage with the energy of a nuclear bomb. Proudly wearing his pretty short leggings he brought showmanship you would expect with bands that play on big festivals. We even got afraid there wasn’t enough room for this guy in this venue. The band plays some nice old-school thrash, the guitarist definitely is on fire, riffing and playing solo’s that would get a blush of shame on most of the other guitarists this evening. We even get some nice tricks from their frontman, he climbs up the strippers pole we mentioned before and hangs upside down like it is the easiest thing to do. It is not every day you will see a frontman with this much energy, we got pretty impressed. The band is vibrant and batters on like a marching army, the vocals could be better but well. That soon is forgotten when we get to the surprise of the evening, the band hired a real pole dancer! At this moment the heads of the male part of the audience couldn’t get hauled away from the stage (up to the annoyance of some girls) a good way to pump some more energy in this already pretty vibrant evening. Again moshpits were made and the singer isn’t that afraid to join the game. The Devil’s 3rd is definitely a band to remember and to check out.
The last band of this evening is up for some completely different, Powerized closes the doors with some pretty nice Power Metal. We can tell you as soon as the band began you just want to bang your head! Their first song “My Creed” was first released as a single and people began to sing with the lyrics. In this song the supersonic high way of singing of the vocalist Nick Holleman is really getting out front. We can’t remember that we heard a guy sing this good in the last few years. In Powerized you can definitely hear influences from bands like Avantasia and Helloween. The band sounds like a unity and gets you in the moment and takes you with them on their musical journey. They create a certain atmosphere that is not about knights and war, it is more like a very happy sound with a pretty eerie and evil overtone. Powerized is a band that is destined to grow big, their singer already made its first steps when he started to do vocals with Vicious Rumors. At this moment his whereabouts are on a pretty big boat somewhere near Miami to play some music. To come back to Powerized, I can only say they definitely know what they are doing and show us some professional showmanship. They definitely earned the spot to be the closing band of the evening and left me with a pretty good taste in my mouth. And for that we thank them.
To come to a conclusion, this evening was pretty diverse. We have seen a lot of different sorts of genres and a lot of different kind of bands. This revolves in an audience that consists out of different kinds of people that I think is a positive thing. When was the last time you saw punks, thrashers, power-metalheads and death-metalheads in the same place and having a good time (except for festivals!). This definitely all are bands that have good potential and the vibe in the venue was good. We left the venue with a good feeling knowing you can mix different styles and people and it doesn’t always have to be the same. The party was going on somewhere else, but hey, what happens at the afterparty stays at the afterparty.