In the meantime, 20 years have passed

21 Mar

Helmet @ Colos-Saal, Aschaffenburg

I bought Helmet’s album “Meantime” shortly after it was released in 1992. I listened to it, loved it and then obviously got into a time capsule and stepped out in the present. Or at least that’s the only explanation I have for being able to attend the 20th anniversary tour of that same record. I mean…20 years…really?

Anyway, there was no way I was going to miss this show. Having seen Helmet only once before at Dynamo Festival in 1997 and then having to deal with the fact of maybe never seeing them live again, I quickly learned what it sounds like when opportunity knocks. So, my allies and I made our way to Aschaffenburg’s Colos-Saal to celebrate an album we all grew up with.

Supporting Helmet in their anniversary quest were Derry’s heavy rock/punk outfit Fighting With Wire. Unexpectedly raw and ultimately confrontational, the three-piece set the stage for their headliners with their sometimes melodic, sometimes scything garage-rocky tunes. Definitely a band to watch out for.

Helmet @ Colos-Saal, Aschaffenburg

Helmet @ Colos-Saal, Aschaffenburg

Next up: Helmet. With a setlist comprised of a complete back-to-front “Meantime” amongst others, Helmet once again proved why they are a staple of the true rock diet. Uncompromising from the first note, the NYC-based rockers blessed their audience with their signature no-frills performance and unique staccato riffs. With their dissonant, abrasively repetitive sound and Hamilton’s angry vocals, Helmet once again succeed in touching us deeply, carving every little bit of left-over teenage angst out of these now adult souls and bringing it to the surface for the night. They remind us that it’s ok to be totally pissed off, but they do it on an almost philosophical level. From it, we understand that aggression and stupidity don’t have to go hand in hand. I guess it’s the outlet that makes the difference. And if the outlet is a masterfully crafted as “Meantime”, it’s certainly an intelligent way to vent.

So, re-listen, re-live and re-comprehend. And then check out their new album “Seeing Eye Dog” when you’re ready for more.

Find out more about Helmet here.
Flickr the Helmet performance here.
Find out more about Fighting With Wire here.
Flickr the Fighting With Wire performance here.
Get tickets for Colos-Saal here.

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