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Days Of Betrayal - Junkhead

2007-05-04 DE – Essen - Turock

Happy Birthday PRO-PAIN! 15 years of New York based Hardcore/Metal that saw the release of 10 albums and resulted in a lucrative musician career. Although almost annually hunting across the planet the heavy weights still the live clubs in this world. That’s really impressing! PRO-PAIN are not for nothing dubbed as one of the greatest live bands ever.
And thought, it’s a while ago that I saw the guys last time performing live. I guess… I had to work back then…
However, 15 years passed, a great anniversary achieved and it’s time to celebrate and party. How to do it better than with an anniversary tour? So they did, together with longtime Swiss powerhouse GURD that hardly ever visit this latitude.
But before it was up to get hot, it was time for a cold brewski in the beer garden of the Turock club, ya know, the place that always catches me ;) So I met up with friends there, drinking Altbeer with coke, talking and speculating about the Earthshaker Roadshock Tour cancellation (Finntroll) and seeing PRO-PAIN leaving for a photo-shooting at Essen’s main drag. I guess they scared some people there… ;)

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Much on time at 8pm, Frankfurt’s own Hardcore/Punk cats JUNKHEAD started, but having much trouble to unglue the couple of people inside the club from the bar to fill the hole in front of the stage. I tell ya, at this summer-like weather the beer garden has a magical appeal ;) Fortunately there are always assiduous ones doing their job in honoring the band’s work. No one knew these cats, commented by Mr. Junkhead: “I don’t mind, don’t know you either”. Witty, but it didn’t spark. Sound wasn’t too flattering, a bit too loud, not differentiated enough. But the guys didn’t mind and had a lot of fun on stage. And that’s the only thing that counts. They played their asses off and got joined by Days Of Betrayal members for the last song to sing along. Musically I’d say JUNKHEAD are quite harmless (melodic Metal/Hardcore mix), nice, but I guess, the mates who stayed in the beer garden didn’t miss that much.

With an immense speed the backline got changed and in no time DAYS OF BETRAYAL got onto stage. Ok, they never were too far away ;) And again it’s a band to deal with I never have heard of before. No wonder, this Belgian gents just exist for three years, having released a demo CD and recently the EP Autumn’s Coldest Embrace, in its support they tour now. But this time DAYS OF BETRAYAL got off the grid much more powerful, driving and grooving as the predecessor. A proper dash of Death Metal and even Black Metal splashes in the music might be responsible for. I got a bit reminded of Unearth. At the end, music kicked ass but I missed something like an own identity of the band, this special bit making them stand out of the masses. As yet they just dwell within.

And again the changeover happened extremely fast. Seems like the Turock will establish a new record (in what, I wonder?). Every band exactly played 30 mins with a 15 mins changeover and GURD entered the stage. It isn’t the first time that GURD tour with Pro-Pain and at all… do you ever get the Swiss mates without Pro-Pain? *lol* Long nine years GURD didn’t visit this area here what led to very cordially and warm welcome greetings. All sympathy cakes scored ;) GURD kicked off with Learn from 95 album Addicted followed by the first brand new smasher The Grand Deception. Ha, the gents were rampaging the stage too, unleashing much energy, leaving nothing but scorched earth! Oh, and watch the 4-stringer Franky while playing, his posing is grandiose ;) Well, it wasn’t such difficult task anyway ;) Turock was crowded now and GURD much pleased with feedback and vibes. Musically speaking it’s not to deny that GURD have much influences by Fear Factory, Prong and also Clawfinger, but they fortunately never fall for the “I copy what I hear” thing, they rather created a very own sound having found their own niche in this genre. A plus goes for the fact that GURD played one song from every of their albums, a minus for that they only played to songs from their brand new one Bang!, the title-track and the already mentioned The Grand Deception. They could have played more from this one… Besides, a fucking great show and really likeable guys! ;)
Setlist: Learn, The Grand Deception, What Do You Live For, Down The Drain, Bang!, Rule The Pit, A New War, Get Up, Hx Hx Hx // Skin Up

PRO-PAIN didn’t hurry afterwards. Clever move to raise the tension. Kicking off with Pig In Clover from the brand new anniversary album Age Of Tyranny - The Tenth Crusade (at least I think so) the hell got unleashed over the crowd. At a furious rate PRO-PAIN thrashed down the first half of their set, faster than on their records of course and downright blowing the crowd away. Tada… that’s the way it has to be! Just great! ;) It’s no secret that PRO-PAIN is one of the best live bands ever, but it seems it was a particular good day and the band in high spirits. Just the bands stage attire could definitely use a good washing if I might add…
Some kind words, a little bit of conversation and PRO-PAIN lively went on thrashing down their set. Ok, setlist included MANY songs and time obviously short (I actually don’t understand why? It was Friday night, no disco following and it would be new to me that the Turock has a curfew). However, PRO-PAIN too played at least one track from every album, beginning with the 92 debut Foul Taste Of Freedom up to the new one released on April 19th.
One thing that bugged me: a lot of Onkelz fans attended this show, since PRO-PAIN are friends of this band and played their farewell show on Lausitzring. Afterwards interviewed the gist of what Gary Meskil said: they were young, made mistakes, learned and changed. And now they don’t exist anymore. That is! One thing I agree with is the fact that Onkelz fans are really loyal.
No matter, let bygones be bygones here and now. What counts is the fucking great PRO-PAIN show. That’s all!
Setlist: Pigs In Clover, Stand Tall, In For The Kill, UnAmerican/No Way Out, The Shape Of Things To Come, Casualties Of War, Gone Fishin’, Fuck It/Draw Blood, Neocon, Don't Kill Yourself To Live, I Remain, One World Ain’t Enough, Left For Dead, Life’s Hard/Get Real, All For King George, Foul Taste Of Freedom, Bad Blood, Shine/Make War (Not Love), State Of Mind (there have been more songs, don’t know anymore...)

Indeed, a fucking awesome show! PRO-PAIN delivered more than their fair share of what their cult status claims to be! Afterwards bands and fans went to the Café Nord next door for some good food and booze. It got late. When I left at 4am the rest was still partying, more or less ;) Next day was probably a hard one to go through for the bands *g*


story & pics © Dajana