Fun Fun Fun Fest 2012 Day One: Earth, Napalm Death, Tomahawk Among Artists on Day One
Band Photo: Napalm Death (?)
Even though Fun Fun Fun Fest 2012 happened just a couple of miles from my apartment, it felt like an epic, festival journey. It was akin to driving from Texas to Maryland for the Maryland Death Fest. The road trip I took to a festival was in 2001 to the defunct Milwaukee Metal Fest. That trip was a mere 7-8 hours in the car from Michigan. Making it to Fun Fun Fun Fest meant 24 hours in the car, from Michigan to Texas. Unlike any other festival trip, though, I could sleep in my own bed after a long day of music and festivities.
4:30 AM November 2nd—I hit the highway outside Sikeston, Missouri, made it to Georgetown, Texas round 3:30 PM and immediately left for Austin. The highway reminded me of those nature programs depicting army ants traveling head to butt in a single file line through the forest. The festival surely added to Friday’s gridlock. I anxiously pushed on, trying to make it home in time to catch the best day of the fest for metal. Napalm Death, Municipal Waste, Burning Love, Converge and Tomahawk comprised this lineup. Despite my diligence, I would miss all of these acts.
Having arrived at the festival around 7 PM, I figured I missed the day’s metal acts, and would look towards Run DMC’s performance. My coverage was even further delayed by mistakes in issuing press credentials. While waiting for my photo pass, droning notes emanated from the Yellow Stage. Normally this stage features comedians, but after 5 PM, bands took the stage. I asked a staff member who was playing and he said Super Chunk.
Once my credentials were cleared, I walked into the tent that housed the Yellow Stage. After a hearing a few minutes of crawling, instrumental doom metal, I concluded this band was NOT Super Chunk. My program confirmed my suspicion: Washington drone pioneers, Earth.
A projection screen painted the background green and added a touch of psychedelia, which was only a coincidence since this projection ran throughout the weekend. Supporting their two-part album, released in consecutive years, “Angels of Darkness, Demons of Light,” Earth’s notes hung in the air as if attached to invisible clothes hangers, which elicited a zombie-type reaction from the swaying crowd. Bands such as Earth have their place, especially for green-thumbed attendees, but punks looking for a little violence were probably positioned their self near the Black Stage. A delay effect created on a trumpet took Earth’s music even further into outer space—one of the highlights of their set.
Fun Fun Fun Fest always brings in plenty of metal artists, but there are break-worthy times between the artists fans want to see. One can pursue a great deal of other activities during these moments. The food vendors offered a variety of eats besides fast food. My smoked turkey leg was fit for a king and people passing by expressed their admiration, one of those admirers was comedian Doug Stanhope. He commented on my poultry as he walked by me backstage. Adventurous patrons touched the sky with their wheels as they skateboarded on a ramp. Two artists spray painted an urban-style mural on a plastic pallet, while a sideshow troupe sacrificed their skin for my sanguinary pleasures.
Rap pioneers Run DMC reunited without its fallen member, Jam Master Jay and Santigold enthralled the audience with her mix of pop, R & B and electronics, but most readers don’t want to hear about this. We are a metal site. Check back in to Metal Underground.com for comprehensive reports on day two and three.
Darren Cowan owns and operates Louder Than Hell.net. He has written for several metal publications. An avid metal head for over twenty years, he has attended concerts throughout several regions of the U.S.
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