Copenhell - 2012

Text: Tobias Nilsson Photo: Lunah Lauridsen

Soulfly was closing the Hades stage at Copenhell, and was the second to last band in all. For Metalmoments, it was the final review we were going to do for the festival in 2012, and we were looking forward to having a serious party finale!

The first thing that happened, except for the intro of course, was that drummer David ‘Dave’ Kinkade came out on the stage and incited us to start clapping – not that it was a hard job considering people seemed pretty enthusiastic already before this, and only needed a small spark to explode.
One by one the rest of the band members came out as well, and it didn’t take long before we were all loudly chanting along to the words “blood, fire, war, hate” in the song titled with the same words from the 2008 album Conquer.
As our voices were now warmed up, there was no problem putting on one of the absolutely biggest crowd-pleasers Max Cavalera could think of; hell yes it was Refuse/Resist from the old Sepultura days! Just imagine the scene – a ton of worn out festival goers, weighed down by too much beer and sort of sluggish from spending too much time in the sun (and rain) shouting and moshing along to one great band after the other, suddenly rise up in the night of the last festival day to create one hell of a circle-pit! It was a sight for sore eyes, let me tell you!
Cavalera and the rest continued on, delivering a mixture of old and new material, sticking to Soulfly songs for the time being, but it still went down well with the by now both loud and wild crowd. Still, it didn’t surpass what happened when Soulfly arrived at the “last” song of the night, the second and just as crowd-pleasing Sepultura cover of the concert. I’m of course speaking about Roots Bloody Roots, and while writing this down I have to have a good grip on my computer to save it from the after-shakes after all the jumping that went on while this song was played! Well, not exactly, but you get the picture I hope!

After a short break, the band came back on the stage though, and proved they had one more cover (of sorts) up their sleeve for us. Whether it was in praise of the previous days headliner, or simply to grab the Copenhell audience once more by the balls and swing us happily around in heavy metal land I cannot say, but as soon as they were settled they began playing Angel Of Death by Slayer!
After a few bars, they changed it up though, and after an excursion into Jumpdafuckup they ended the night and the medley with Eye For An Eye.
Throughout it all the band weren’t too bad to look at either; Marc Rizzo always knows how to rip it up, this has been proven time and again, and the still rather new bassist Tony Campos (who’s list of present and past bands is simply too long to list here) was pretty cool as well. Kinkade is also nice guy; I knew him from his days in Borknagar, and this was the first time I saw him flying with the Soulfly crew – he even got his own spot to shine, as he delivered a drum solo before the song Pain. I’ve never been a huge fan of drum solo’s I admit, but this was nicely varied and he had the decency of keeping it at an acceptable length in time.
Pain, yes. Now there’s another story right there. You know how Cavalera in Soulfly always want to bring in guest vocalists on each and every album he creates? Well, this was time for the live version of just that – and in came two of Max Cavalera’s sons, Ritchie and Igor, and they really helped rip the gates of hell open as they nearly flew around the stage, the way they were constantly sprinting or jumping. Nothing of the by now pretty crowded stage was left unused.
The only minus in the performance, sadly, was good old Max himself. Let’s face it, the man has grown a little bit older, a lot fatter, and his performance technique even before all this mainly consisted of hanging at his mic without much movement; I always envision him as a veritable a-bomb of energy when performing, but I can’t remember how many years ago I gave up hope of seeing that in reality...

Even so, this felt like the best show I’ve seen from the Cavalera family in a long while; it was in fact so good that at the time I could completely forget about the rain and my dry spot waiting for me in the beer garden, and just live the show as it was unfolding before me. Talk about bringing the party I had been hoping for!
I will also have to say though, that just as the fast-food it would seem that the front-man has been living off of for a bit too long now, this show may have been enjoyable while it lasted but as soon as it was over the memory of it quickly began fading away. The one thing I do remember clearly is the image of two young men who were defying the weather even as the concert was over and the band had left, hanging on the fence hoping to get a glimpse of, and possibly greet, their big idol.

Setlist (incomplete):

Blood Fire War Hate
Refuse/Resist (Sepultura cover)
Back To The Primitive
Seek ‘N’ Strike
Solo (Kinkade)
Roots Bloody Roots (Sepultura cover)
Angel Of Death / Jumpdafuckup / Eye For An Eye (partial Slayer cover)

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