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Spack! Festival

20 Aug

Itchy Poopzkid at Spack! FestivalThere’s nothing like a summer festival experience. Especially if the sun is shining and there’s some of your favorite bands on the bill. Sure, a festival is something you have to WANT to go to. I mean, it can be a whole lot of waiting, muddy campgrounds and such. But especially when they are small and “cozy”, they become one of the most honest music experiences.

Itchy Poopzkid at Spack! FestivalMost recently, I attended a festival called Spack! which takes place in Wirges about an hour outside of Frankfurt, Germany. After a number of smaller, local/German bands the first of two days came to a close with three headliners. First up: Itchy Poopzkid, one of my favorite German punk-rock bands. As expected, the three-piece delivered a vibrant set incorporating some of the finest tunes from their ten-year-career. Now, I never get tired watching this band do a live show. Witty remarks, instrument switcharoo, guitar case stunts – these guys have all that and more. On a side note, I have more reasons to go and support this band. While I try not to include “work” in this blog, I did include Itchy Poopzkid in my work. Check out the new Suzuki campaign I got to work on here.

 

Boysetsfire at Spack! Festival

Back to the festival, though. And the bill. Second up were none other than my favorite post-hardcore band of all time, Boysetsfire. And yes, it was my third BSF show this summer. But honestly, I had to make up for lost time, right? In short: It totally blissed me out once again. From “My Empire” to “Rookie”, it was all there. Outstandingly delivered.Boysetsfire at Spack! Festival

Oh, and then Good Charlotte played.

 

 

 

 

 

 

More on Itchy Poopzkid here: www.itchypoopzkid.de
More on Boysetsfire here: www.boysetsfire.org
More on Spack! Festival here: www.spack-festival.de

 

 

 

 

Setting fire, Part Two

1 Jul

Boysetsfire at BatschkappWow. I mean: wow. You’d think going to the same gig twice would be stifling. But that’s not so if the band in question is Boysetsfire. The second sold out show at Batschkapp was just as awesome as the first. A sweaty, vibrant 2-hour-long set that had the power to bliss anyone out, not only the die-hard fans. And thanks to an off chance of exchanging a few words with Chad Istvan and one of the crew, we can now safely say: talent and modesty do still come as a pair.

Boysetsfire at BatschkappMore on Boysetsfire here: www.boysetsfire.org
Tickets for future Batschkapp events here: batschkapp.tickets.de

 

 

Setting Fire, Part One

26 Jun

One of last year’s best news flashes for me? The fact that Boysetsfire decided to reunite. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not like I got tired of listening to the existing albums over and over again. But I did miss going to the shows. So, of course, I bought a ticket for Frankfurt straight-away. For the actual sold-out show. And the additional sold-out show.

First, let me give you the low-down on Boysetsfire. Coined post-hardcore by some (not big on the categories), defined as political by others (again, what’s with the categorization?), the band was formed in the mid-nineties and has since released four studio albums, a number of EPs, a B-side compilation and a farewell DVD. The band’s members originate from Delaware, Pennsylvania and – surprise – Munich, Germany. News got out in 2006 that the band was retiring. Vocalist Nathan Gray then went on to form punk-rocky The Casting Out (at first with BSF guitarist Josh Latshaw) and drummer Matt Krupanski put his efforts into progressive punk Delaware (or is it Brooklyn?) ensemble Young Lady.

However, after all these detours, Boysetsfire is back in one piece…five pieces…and due to play two sold-out shows in Frankfurt’s legendary nexus of rock, the Batschkapp. Tonight, they were supported by Dutch punkrockers Antillectual and the progressive hardcore band Letlive from California. Both of these were absolutely worth seeing. Unfortunately, the air in the venue was absolutely not worth breathing so I must admit I only saw half their shows and listened to the rest from outside.

I did go in and grab a spot at the front for Boysetsfire’s set, though. And I was generously rewarded with almost two hours of the best Boysetsfire songs, a great acoustic session in the middle of the set and a band that seemed genuinely over the moon – though somewhat surprised – at the fan love they were receiving. A heart-warming moment was Nathan Gray’s modest commentary on their disbelief regarding the two sold-out shows. If I was in any way not tough, it would have easily been enough to generate a tear of joy or two…

So, the night was a success, the crowd was awesome (minus annoying stage-diver, you know who you are). The best “preview” I could have asked for – albeit slightly too hot and sweaty, even for a rock show. Still can’t wait for next week and Part Two, though. I’ll keep you posted, as always.

Check out Batschkapp here: www.batschkapp.de
Check out Antillectual here: http://music.antillectual.com
Check out Letlive here: www.myspace.com/letlive
Check out Boysetsfire here: www.myspace.com/boysetsfire