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Roadburn 2019, Day 4

Event: Roadburn Festival 2019
Written by: X-Ray Rod, RaduP, Schimodie, Auntie Sahar
Published: 16.07.2019


Roadburn 2019, Day 4 by X-Ray Rod (38)
Roadburn 2019, Day 3 by X-Ray Rod (52)
Roadburn 2019, Day 2 by X-Ray Rod (40)
Roadburn 2019, Day 1 by X-Ray Rod (71)


Lil Radu: This was it: the final day. It was hard to come to terms with the fact that this would be the final day, but at least we had one more full day of concerts. We debated going to some restaurants, being certain that at least today we should replace the usual fast food breakfast, and we wanted to try a place near the venue that had a special Roadburn menu, with dishes named after bands from the lineup. However, we were one hour too early, and rather than wait around another hour on an empty stomach we realized that there were plenty of other places to eat there.

Rod: The fourth and final day tends to carry a certain atmosphere in the air. This is most likely due to there being smaller crowds and one less stage. Still, though, the feeling of longing was already kicking in; yet my feet felt ecstatic about finally getting some rest. After a hearty brunch, I was eager to go to the main stage and just sit down and wait for the day to begin.


Lil Radu: The second Have A Nice Life performance, one whose set list we had already known - thus there were fewer surprises along the way. Performance-wise, I can't say I noticed a recognizable difference from the performance of the previous day, but I think the crowd must've read Rod's complaints on the internet, because they felt much less engaged and barely anyone was singing along. So the entire burden of singing all of the lyrics fell upon the band and me. Compared to the album, I had the same studio-to-live gripes that I had with the previous performance, but the band did have live versions that were a bit different for songs like "The Future" and "Deep Deep". Having already seen "Bloodhail" previously, the hard-hitters that I was waiting for came towards the end of the set. Shouting "I don't feel anything where this love should be" and witnessing that release in the final half of "Earthmover" were some of the most cathartic moments of the entire festival, or maybe even of my entire concert-going run. It was really heartwarming to hear Dan talk about how they recorded this album without much concern for its quality because they thought that nobody would listen to it and now they were there, performing it in full on the biggest stage of the festival. As with the previous day, the band also had somebody do live animations for the projections, with the whole performance ending with a tribute to Lil Peep being projected - which at first I found a bit funny and anticlimatic, until I realized how tragic it is to die of an overdose at 21.

Rod: The first set of the last day had been one of my top priorities since I started preparing my trip to Roadburn 2019. Over a decade old, Deathconsciousness is a modern classic for moody people, and being able to hear it in its entirety was a once in-a-lifetime opportunity. After the mixed feelings I had with HANL's set on Saturday in terms of both the band and the audience, I decided to maximize my possibilities of joy and went straight to the balcony section of the main stage. To my delight, the sound was much clearer and I could clearly hear Dan's emotional vocals. The music sounded quite different from the studio version, which is understandable given how lo-fi and private it really is. Live it was less noisy and there was more emphasis on the melodies. One could argue that this takes off part of the charm, but it does provide a nice contrast to how I enjoy the album when I'm at home. The visuals played a much bigger role this time around, truly capturing the introspective nature of their music. It was also heartwarming to listen to the ever-so-thankful Dan as he was remembering out loud how this project started as a bedroom project that they were sure would only be heard by close friends and no more? Roadburn, a place where dreams come true!


Lil Radu: This was one of those performances where I wished I had a lot more energy and that the venue would allow crowd-surfing. If Have A Nice Life were moody and introspective, Daughters were angry and anxious, which has something of an overlap, I guess. Whether screaming HANL's "I don't feel anything where this love should be" or Daughter's "Don't tell me how to do my job" or "This world is opening up", the feeling of liberation is there. The set was really You Won't Get What You Want-centric, which might've been a bigger gripe if I had been a fan prior to their comeback album, but as it was, I did recognize one or two older songs, but I was most excited for "The Reason They Hate Me", "Satan In The Wait", or "Guest House". I was in the farther half of the hall, so I had a pretty good view of the whole ensemble on the stage, but it was always a surprise to find frontman Alexis Marshall in a different place from where you last saw him, whether on stage, in the crowd, or on the bar. Their performance left me physically exhausted despite me barely moving.

Rod: Introspective music can be found in many genres and nothing is more pleasant than to be treated to two completely different types of music that truly grab you and make your mind wander. I stayed at the balcony for Daughters, who had decided to come back from the dead after 8 years since their last output. Many, myself included, got into them thanks to their comeback album, one of the highlights of 2018, You Won't Get What You Want. The melancholic and cathartic mood of Have A Nice Life disappeared and Daughters came and turned it all into anguish, rage, and frustration. Pun fully intended: I got what I wanted. It was abrasive beyond belief. I simply couldn't stop moving my whole body to the corrosive riffs and hypnotic beats. Seeing Alexis Marshall behind the mic was a concert in itself. The unpredictability of his performance made it all the more frightening, as you could feel he was about to snap in any minute. He jumped several times into the audience, carried the mic with him, and even performed standing on top the bar, kicking beer glasses and just being out of it. His whole persona was truly entrancing and addictive to watch. A tiny gripe was that the vocals were a bit too high on the mix and at times overpowered the music, but all in all it was one of the best sets of the festival. Short yet explosive and left me wishing I could relive it all (which I will in August when they come to my turf in the south of Sweden!).


Lil Radu: Having missed their secret Misfits covers set on the previous day, I wasn't gonna let their collaborative set with Emma Ruth Rundle be the only Thou set that I see. I didn't get to stick around for long, which is usually the case when there's a concert in the Patronaat up next, but I did get to confirm that Thou's live performance is interesting enough without any collaboration or covers to spice it up, as much as I prefer the latter two.


Lil Radu: Having already given up on my hopes and dreams of seeing half of Marissa Nadler's and half of Ulcerate's sets, I decided to stay a little longer to Nadler's set, which was one of the most intimate and mesmerizing sets of the festival. She stopped halfway through the first song due to supposed sound issues that I was too mesmerized to notice, but apparently something was off with the reverb. I don't think most people noticed, and with the adorable way she felt embarrassed about it, everyone was quick to forgive. A few songs in she was joined by Cave In's Steve Brodsky (after her and the crowd calling for him to join the stage in between the previous few songs) and they performed some songs that would later appear on their Droneflower collaboration; it was this performance that hyped it up quite a lot for me, seeing how dark it sounded compared to her usual stuff. It was with a heavy heart that I departed to the Hall Of Fame, but not before spotting members of Thou and Emma Ruth Rundle in the crowd while leaving.


Rod: After Mono and Have A Nice Life, Ulcerate was the band I was most looking forward to. As they hail all the way from New Zealand, it was imperative that I not miss a second of their set, and so I camped for nearly an hour dead-center on the balcony of the Green Room and waited patiently. I was treated to the most mental show of the whole festival. The mind-boggling maelstrom of dissonant riffs sealed the room airtight. There was not a single second during which something otherworldly wasn't happening on stage. Right there and then I felt like all the other riffs out there could just go and die. And while massive props must be given to the insane delivery from Michael and Paul, the grand prize goes to Jamie, who was without a doubt the best drummer I witnessed at Roadburn 2019. His extreme velocity and precision was nearly frightening to watch and I simply couldn't take my eyes off his hypnotic and harrowing performance. Despite the chaotic nature of their music it all looked so perfectly orchestrated, like seeing the end of the world in slow motion.


Lil Radu: It was during the last day that I would finally witness a set in the last unexplored hall, the Hall Of Fame. Having heard stories of queues for Bismuth and A.A. Williams, I had to leave quite early to make sure I would catch a good spot for this set. Apparently it was too early, seeing how there was no queue in sight and the hall was nearly empty, leaving me to ponder how many Marissa Nadler or Ulcerate songs I could've seen in the meantime. I did have fun watching the band do their soundcheck and seeing Jay tell the sound guy, "Think how much reverb would be way too much reverb and make it more than that". I was joined by Che and sat as close to the stage as we could to get the most out of the abrasive experience. The set started off with just Jay and Mories in a more death industrial fashion before the band joined them as well to create a sludgier sound. And in the nondescript wall of sludgy noise, I started picking up some familiar lyrics that made me realize that they were playing Britney Spears's "Oops I Did It Again", something which it seems that only Jay was aware of, little scoundrel that he is.


Lil Radu: It was at the Patronaat queue that I realized that the fest was indeed ending and that this would be the last venue change of the festival. At first I wanted to see Bossk playing Audio Noir, but I decided that I really wanted to see Mats Gustafsson to get those sweet jazz cred points. I first heard of him through his collaboration with Chaos Ech?s and was more familiar with his work with Fire! Orchestra (whose new album you should check out), so I went into The End's performance not exactly knowing what to expect. I found a nice place to sit and I was suddenly met by a pretty wild vocal performance that I find really hard to put into words. Needless to say, free jazz isn't for everybody, but I did find it absolutely fascinating, as well as a bit terrifying, despite not fully knowing what to make of it.

Rod: I felt completely demolished by Ulcerate's performance, so I decided to take it easy and just walk to the Patronaat since the two last sets I wanted to see will be performed there so might as well be there early and relaxed with whatever was playing at the time. That plan sort of went to shit because you simply cannot relax with something like The End. Their brand of abrasive free jazz kept me on edge as I sat on the floor and with each crazy moment after the other I decided that I might as well stand up and properly watch one of the oddest and extremely intriguing performances of this year. The shrieks of the sax and the bizarre, schizophrenic nature of the singer brought feelings of both awe and fear. I can't say they made a fan out of me, but they certainly grabbed my attention when I thought nothing could due to my exhaustion.


Lil Radu: Realizing that I would have plenty of time later to be tired and complain about my legs hurting, I decided to follow Rod as close to the stage as possible for what would've been the most intense performance of the day, had it not been for Daughters. So much so that I regretted having some fragile merch on me, as I was demoted to having to push the moshers with my free hand on the edge of the pit. But it was better than sitting on the balcony looking at my phone.

Rod: As I was slowly coming back from the dead I decided to stay in the center of the stage to enjoy one of my discoveries of this year's Roadburn. The French Birds In Row performed, according to yours truly, the most emotional set of the last day. Their brand of post-hardcore is harrowing and honest. There is a such an urgent feeling of distress and angst that is infectiously catchy with the powerful chords and painful screams. It resonated heavily with the audience, which started to mosh almost immediately during the more extreme parts of their set. Knowing that the Het Patronaat would no longer be a stage to use for future editions of Roadburn, I seized the opportunity in between songs and screamed my lungs out: "LAST MOSH AT PATRONAAT", which seemed to get the attention of both the public and the band, as the singer seemed grateful and invited the audience to tear the place apart. I went all over the place during all the chaos. My body was aching; the festival was close to an end. I couldn't have been happier and more satisfied at that point!


Rod: And so the final band entered the stage. And what a finale! As the grim and sculpture-looking members of the New York trio came up the stage, I knew they were the right swansong for the Het Patronaat venue. Their posture was mysterious and unnerving, and so was the music. The glamour and decadence that surround New York were truly felt by everyone as the band pummeled the audience with highly technical and caustic black metal. The mix was loud and clear, making the performance even better as it was noticeable how exquisite their songwriting skills are. The jazz influences and interludes only served to further increase the tension, except for the truly magical trumpet interlude that teleported the audience into an older, more elegant era.

The cheering that came after the silence was spectacular and seemingly never-ending. One more song, please... And so it was granted. A vile luxury, indeed!

Lil Radu: This was it. The final band. Oh Lord, I really didn't want it to end.

And the festival really ended on a very high note, with Imperial Triumphant having that stage presence that reminded me a bit of Laster with the masked trio thing. But having noticed Dutch folks for so long and their renowned height, it was surprising that Imperial Triumphant seemed taller than Laster. That aside, their set was truly hypnotic and the presence of the trumpet player made it so much more worth it. I found the sound mix to be a bit weird at first, but it did make me notice how intricate the performances actually were. And with how crushing they sounded and how imposing they looked with the masks, they really made an impression in the final hour, especially considering that it would also be the venue's last.

But alas, they had to leave the stage eventually. At this point there was nothing left to lose and we didn't want to go home yet. So we kept cheering. We saw them peek at us from backstage. We kept cheering. The light went on and the background music started. We kept cheering. The roadie turned off the amps. We kept cheering. Until we saw them triumphantly get back on stage for one final song. And then we were content.


Lil Radu: We did get home, but the feeling that there wouldn't be any sets to look forward to tomorrow hadn't set in just yet. With a few beers and the intent to delay going to sleep as much as possible, Rod and I had a look through our merch and some life stories while Che and Big Radu had already gone to bed, especially since Che had to depart the earliest of all of us. Sadly, when I woke up, he was already gone. And soon enough, all three of us were at the airport and had to go our own ways. And soon enough, we were in Bucharest and I had to say goodbye to Big Radu as well. And soon enough, I was back at work. That kinda sucked. How in the world was I supposed to get back to my normal life after living through this?

Rod: Saying goodbye is never easy, specially when you are saying goodbye to your favorite musical event of the year? And even worse when this was the last year with one of your favorite venues. Sure, Het Patronaat had some flaws in terms of design (those queues, am I right?), but it was a precious venue to me, considering all the brilliant sets I've witnessed throughout the years. After taking some last shots of the place, I went out to look for friends and acquaintances to bid my farewell to just so I could prolong the dream a bit longer. Soon I found myself walking and talking to Lil Radu about our thoughts on Roadburn, music, and our personal lives. It seems Roadburn just has a natural way of bringing out feelings and deep conversations with the ones I meet.

RIP Het Patronaat (2012-2019)


Lil Radu: I had to delay going back to my normal life as much as possible. Sure, I had to go back to work, but the very next day after arriving back home, I was already at another gig, pretending in my mind that it was an extension of Roadburn, another hall that I hadn't been to (even though this venue in my city is among my most visited ones). So I saw Zaum and their exotic psychedelic soundscapes, which wouldn't have been a bad fit for Roadburn. Sure, the illusion of me being home was broken by me finding familiar people who were surprisingly unimpressed by the bands that I had seen, by me being able to see the stage perfectly without any tall Dutchmen, and by the beer being at an affordable price.

Even though I had to wait a few more days, that exact weekend also had a date of the Imperial Triumphant/ Mord'A'Stigmata tour, both bands who were on the Roadburn roaster, one that I had seen and one that I had not, so I could extend the Roadburn hangover even further. I managed to get Imperial Triumphant to answer a few questions for us, most of which were written by Che for an interview that never happened, and which you can also read the answers to here. So after lamenting their poor decision of coming to Eastern Europe and playing for a dirt cheap price, I got to see Mord'A'Stigmata and their impressive Polish brand of black metal. I didn't expect the electronic part of their sound to work so great live as well, but it was quite clear by this point that this venue wasn't a match for the ones at Roadburn, sound quality-wise. The contrast would be even greater once Imperial Triumphant took to the stage, having already witnessed the same set just a week before. But even with a less great sound and without any live guests this time, they still dominated the stage. And then I got home and started studying for the exam that I had the next day. The hangover had to come to an end.

Rod: As a Roadburn "veteran", I'm used to the withdrawal symptoms after the festival. I did not have any concerts planned for the summer, except for Rammstein. The merch I bought served as a perfect way to pass the time and think about the wonderful days I had and will have next year. Until then, so long, folks! Here are some shitty pics of us! And don't forget to check out the rest of our pictures in the gallery!

Rod saying goodbye to Het Patronaat

Che and Lil Radu at the base of our operations

Saying goodbye: Rod, Big Radu and Lil Radu

Written on 16.07.2019 by A lazy reviewer but he is so cute you'd forgive him for it.


Comments: 4   Visited by: 42 users
16.07.2019 - 11:25

Cool photos people. I hope you can do it again next year
16.07.2019 - 11:27
Written by nikarg on 16.07.2019 at 11:25

Cool photos people. I hope you can do it again next year

That's the plan. Not sure if all of us can make.

So we could use some company.
Do you think if the heart keeps on shrinking
One day there will be no heart at all?
16.07.2019 - 11:27
Man I miss it
Do you think if the heart keeps on shrinking
One day there will be no heart at all?
16.07.2019 - 11:45
X-Ray Rod
Hard same...
Written by BloodTears on 19.08.2011 at 18:29
Like you could kiss my ass
Written by Milena on 20.06.2012 at 10:49
Rod, let me love you.

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