Live 2022-08-05 - Festival Maritim -- Friday

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(This "text" is more about the experience at the Festival Maritim than what would be written normally. All written without taking notes after a performance and all basically from memory)

19:00 -- Les Souillés de fond de cale

One thing can be said about this band: their vocalist was really great. His presence and charisma was something that even on a small stage had a captivating effect. It would not be the only band to rely on this and use a "focal musician" or proper front singer so to speak. They played a couple of shanty and folk songs and then they lost me. I am fully aware people are moved by the war in Ukraine, but to limit the aspect of "thinking about and remembrance of" this conflict ... what about the recent or rather long lasting events in Yemen, Syria, Libya and so on and so forth? Nothing? ... well well ...

Luckily this had been the only instance I had to deal with this stuff.

[Disclaimer: I denounce all wars and all of them should all stop immediately and all involved parties should face harsh punishments after an independent panel has established the guilts and penalties. Just in case anyone doubts my position on this stuff.]

Moving on to another band. ... sadly ...

19:00 -- Pyrates

I listened to a couple of songs, but merely from a distance, since quite a crowd had been gathered in front of the stage and I did not want to get closer. There is still a level of anxiousness due to the Covid stuff within me. Good catchy folk music ... a lot of action on the stage. Looked fun, but due to the previous band, my mind had been elsewhere. Again ... sadly.

20:30 -- Tortilla Flat

Holy ... shit. If I ever needed a band to kick me in the butt and to remind me on how good it feels to be able to listen to punk and metal on a stage again, this band applied the proper treatment. Every track an ample medication to quench my thirst, every guitar riff an application of a balm on wounds I did not know I had. Back when I lived in Heidelberg, quite some time prior to the Covid Times, I would generally venture out to concerts; something to have diminished over the course of years and with each additional town I lived in. Tortilla Flat reminded me on this lack of concerts again; something not as easy to get done here, in Lemwerder where I am "living" right now, or in Bremen for that matter as in Heidelberg, but challenge accepted, I would say.

Anyway, they were so much fun. They were so good. A mixture of punk, hard rock and rock; maybe they ventured over a little bit into the metal realm, but this would have been nuances and therefore largely negligible. Upbeat music with a lot of kick and three freaking bag pipes to create a wall of sound that ebbed and flowed in "merciless blasts" over the audience. They were not a constant occurrence in every song, but a good portion had them. And yes, they also played some of those bagpipe songs which not only did feel like beating a dead horse, but also every of the other ten thousand animals its spirit had been reborn into. An endless parade of dead beasts and we do our best to increase the number even more. Anyway, along with these instruments a guitar, a bass, drum and an accordion set the sound of the band. The tracks meander through the variety of styles and genres and it is a good band to enjoy in the evening, when the stage is able to support them with lightning and maybe even stage fog. They delivered and and delivered and time flew by.

On a small side note: next time some proper double bass blasts by the drums, please. Thank you.

If I had to pick a favourite band of the festival, this would be one of them. They had to share this spot with... but more on that on the Saturday review.

22:00 -- Aqua Marina

In all honesty, I am absolutely not joking what I am about to write here, but I left the performance of a band that really blew me away in order to see this band from Poland. I really wanted to see them. The short description in the leaflet of the festival sounded somehow intriguing: "an a-cappella band, who started their music while learning to sing together." They also have their first recording out. I am a bit familiar with folk music from Easter Europe and I was really curious on how they would sound and interpret it. Well, I headed over to the stage and then nothing. The band did ... not ... show ... up. An empty stage, no information, nothing. Several people were standing there and were waiting for them; me being one of them. Absolutely unacceptable behaviour.

Later I asked at an information booth about this band and this incident and they assured me that they were indeed there and were expected to perform on the next day(s) ...

After this disappointment, a rescheduling was in order. A new band on Friday and Aqua Marina on Saturday, because everyone deserves a second chance. Yes, occasionally I am a nice person.

Response from the band
You're right, we started the performance at 10:10 [22:10; note from the writer] on Friday in contact with the organizers due to technical issue. As far as we know everyone enjoyed our concerts. :) When it comes to the second part of your message, we're very happy that you liked the band before us. They're amazing! The most important for us is that the organizers of the International Festival Maritim and our audience were satisfied. :)

22:00 -- Tripple

Off to another band, then. Thankfully they have thrown me a lifeline since the end of the festival, which finally enables me to understand their band name. The simple stuff is occasional too easy and immediately apparent to me. I imagined Tripple to be a play on triplet or on tripel or on triply, but never on "trippeln", like it is in German, or tripple its pendant in English. Why easy, when you can have it complicated. Ungood and maybe even double-plus-ungood.

Tripple hail from the North East of Scotland. According to the festival's leaflet they sing in three tongues: Scottish, Doric and Gaelic; you can add English to this as well ... but maybe that would have sounded too banal and obvious, but what do I know. Three women occupy the stage and it is revealed that this would be a mother with her two daughters. Well ... which probably reveals something about the past of the band: too much time in the dark days of the year and what else to do, than to sing the time away? Just look at all the scores of metal bands in Scandinavia. Moving on very quickly.

Their performance had a slight additional challenge: the techno sounds from a bar placed at the promenade of the nearby Weser. Thud, thud, thud. It was basically a constant bombardment. Thud, thud, thud. Yet they were not to be discouraged. One well performed song after another filled the air. Yet with only vocals at their disposal, it was difficult to get the upper hand over the thuds. In style it was only a-cappella and their music was a variety of occasional humorous, balladesk, but generally quite catchy music. They engage with the audience, they told short funny stories and appear to be a jolly and good-spirited bunch. And of course the issue of Whiskey had to be brought up. Maybe it is a prerequisite for a band from Scotland to sing about it, because otherwise they get no financial support from the government ... what the heck do I know. No, they offered no suggestions regarding spirits from their region. They did also not have a cask with them. A slight disappointment.

I left a bit early, because it was difficult to really concentrate on the music with all the thud, thud, thud going on. I would give them another try on Sunday, where they would be due to play at a different location and at an earlier date, which means that the chances might be better that the thud, thud, thud would then be far off... hopefully.

2022 Shanty Folk Festival 2022-08-05