Hell WILL be unleashed upon an unsuspecting Copenhagen this weekend when metal-heads from all over Scandinavia, and beyond, descend upon the industrial harbour of Refshaleøen for the third consecutive incarnation of ‘Copenhell’.
Started in 2010, this metal festival is no real competitor for Roskilde, but nor should it be. This festival is in fact partnered with Roskilde and intended purely for those music lovers who, by the end of it, want their heads to be throbbing and their stretched neck muscles to be aching. Presumably these punters won’t be partaking in that counterproductive Scandinavian practice of wearing earplugs at rock concerts.
The festival features a packed and varied (within the genre) programme and will present both big, established names alongside those lesser known. In addition to the two main stages, last year the festival introduced an ‘Upcoming stage’ exclusively for those bands looking to get signed.
This year sees the festival going from strength to strength with headliners Slayer, long considered the masters of metal, and Marilyn Manson, the crown prince showman of shock rock.
Slayer debuted in the early ‘80s and hit pay-dirt with their third studio album Reign in Blood in ‘86.
Marilyn Manson, who famously took his name from two polar opposite cultural icons, Marilyn Monroe and Charles Manson, shot to fame a decade later in the mid ‘90s with his debut album Portrait Of An American Family. He cemented his cross fertilisation of metal, goth, industrial and pop-rock with the far-reaching success of his cover of the Eurythmics’ hit, ‘Sweet Dreams (Are Made Of This)’. He arrives in Copenhagen with a recently released album, Born Villain, tracks from which will no doubt form a portion of his set.
Also playing are Anthrax, another early 1980s act who, alongside Megadeth, Metallica (a band to which Danes claim some ownership) and the aforementioned Slayer, formed the ‘big four’ of metal; Grammy-nominated Lamb Of God, who have been labelled ‘groove metal’ and are according to their own bassist “a metal-playing punk band”; and Mastodon, Killswitch Engage, and Immortal. In total, 16 international bands are playing in what will be Copenhell’s most impressive line-up to date. See online for the full listings.
Tickets for the event are 715kr a pop, which includes both days, and if you plan on camping at the festival you need to pay only a further 495kr for a two-man tent (to keep) – particularly useful when getting hammered at the venue and crawling to your slumber. If that’s the plan, you should hurry as the tents are almost all sold out. Be aware that a camping ticket will also grant you access to a live warm-up session on the Thursday evening, prior to the actual festival. Gates open at 17:00 on Thursday evening.
The weekend has been nominated for Politiken’s ‘Event of the Year’ award, which no doubt is due to a concerted emphasis on creating a full-blooded atmospheric experience that goes beyond the music itself, tailored specifically to this audience: amongst other things there’ll be an apparently legendary beer garden, lots of fire and, in collaboration with the film festival CPH:DOX, a cinema that will screen a programme called HELL:DOX – documentary films on particular bands, tracing the evolution of this enduring genre. By raising hell in Copenhagen, the organisers have created a heaven for head-bangers. Rock on.
Refshaleøen 1432 Cph K;
Warm-up starts Thu June 14, 17:00
Festival starts Fri, ends Sat; Tickets 715kr