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Skogsröjet Festival Review

If you start your summer with a festival, for me it was Sweden Rock, it’s not more than right to end the summer with one as well. That’s what I decided to do last weekend and went into the deep forests of Sweden to hear some great music. For the seventh year in a row, the small rock festival called ”Skogsröjet” opened its gates and with acts like Alice Cooper, Hardcore Superstar, Michael Monroe, L.A. Guns and more. It seemed like the perfect place to be, since I was in the mood for some Glam. (I really don’t know how to translate the Swedish name ”Skogsröjet” fairly, but something in between ”The Forest Party” and ”The Forest Rave” is pretty close, I think).

Day one started of with L.A. Guns, who unfortunately hit the stage at 6.45 p.m. Phil Lewis was in a great mood and the sound flawless. I really enjoyed the set, but at the same time I felt like it never got that "kick" to make it something extra. I mainly blame the audience, who didn’t really give the band the support they needed to fill the big stage. Can’t help but wonder if it would have been different if they had played two hours later.

Two hours later it was time for Alice Cooper. I’d never seen him before either, but my friend assured me that he always delivered live. After his show we both agreed on that the best thing with Alice Cooper is also the worst thing with Alice Cooper: you always know what you get. Yes, I got to hear all of the classic songs that I’ve been looking forward to hear live. Yes, the band was great and yes, Mr. Cooper did what he could to entertain us with the scenery, many changes of clothes and the so-called horror show. It was amazing but at the same time I left wondering if that was really it? Have you seen Alice Cooper live? What do you think of his performance? Did I just happen to catch him on bad evening when most of the show was just plain routine?

Day two started with Sister Sin, a band I haven’t listen to at all before. Although my friend and I always want to ”support the ladies” and with very few ladies at this festival we decided to go see a band with a least one woman. And we weren’t disappointed. Even though it’s not really the music I normally listen to, Sister Sin is great live. The singer Liv Jägrell’s voice is very strong and even though it was only 6:30 p.m., they probably had the biggest audience in front of the small stage during the whole festival. If you get the chance to see them live, take it.

My main focus this day was Michael Monroe and Hardcore Superstar, but since I’m writing for BBG! I thought I’d check out Reckless Love as well. Although they are not a band I like. There, I said it. To me the music is just to much pop and I have a hard time taking the singer Olli Herman seriously. Especially when I think of his time in Crashdïet, don’t even get me started on that… Anyway, I know they have a really big fanbase and the crowd seemed to really enjoy their set. And despite my feelings I have to admit that Olli tries hard to put on a great show, so I guess if you like Reckless Love you would enjoy to see them live.

Then it was FINALLY time for Michael Monroe, the show I’ve been waiting for whole summer. And did he deliver! The energy from the band is at 200 percent from the first tune and they just kept on going. Michael Monroe is funny to watch too, he’s out in the audience, he’s climbing the rig and my thoughts goes to Iggy Pop. Michael Monroe might just be the Iggy Pop of the Glam scene. That he nowadays has Swedish guitarist Dregen, from Backyard Babies, by his side also gets the crowd going. Definitely the greatest show of this festival, probably of the whole summer. Wanna know how it’s done, go see a Michael Monroe show.

I then can’t think of a better way to end the festival than with Hardcore Superstar. It’s almost ridiculous how great they are, especially live. There’s no better live band in Sweden, in my opinion. You always know that you will get a great show, but at the same time you don’t know what to expect at all. For example the setlist this time included some surprises, like their old hit ”Someone Special.” I didn’t think they played that one live anymore, but apparently so and the crowd went crazy. The singer Jocke Berg is one of my favourite frontmen and once again he proved why. It’s also obvious how much the fans love Hardcore Superstar and how much Hardcore Superstar loves their fans. The sing-a-long to ”Run To Your Mama” almost drowns the band playing and when they kick off their last song of this night, ”We Don’t Celebrate Sundays,” I don’t think anyone is standing still. This was the fourth time I saw the band within a year and I still can’t get enough. They finished by saying thanks to the festival, the crew, the crowd and finally they promised to be back next year – with a new album! Can’t wait!



Reader Comments (14)

Sounds like you had fun, good for you. Although there's nothing glam about them (except their cover of Aerosmith's Nobody's Fault) Testament was the best band on the bill.
August 18, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSnoot
Nothing Glam about L.A. Guns, Michael Monroe (?!!) or Hardcore Superstar? Really? Obviously I missed out on Testament but I'll make sure to see them next time - especially if they're more Glam than the acts that I saw?
August 18, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKim Nordlund
Think you misread it, I meant that Testament isn't glam. The ones you mentioned certainly are Kim.
August 18, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSnoot
Haha, okej, now I get it! Was obviously a bit tired when I read your post... I'll definitely check out Testament next time, sounds interesting! :)
August 18, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKim Nordlund
Questions: What did th singer for reckless love do in crashdiet and whys he gone. Gonna see crashdiet we'd in MD. Cannot wait. Who is better. Crash or Hard core??
August 18, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterBrian L
Pretty cool line-up.... great mixture of bands.

I'll be in Baltimore for the Crashdiet show this week also.. Glad Baltimore is one of the few stops Crashdiet is making in North America.
August 18, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterRock-It
Olli was in Crashdïet 2007-2008 after the original singer, late Dave Lepard. Although the band and him never seemed to really connect, so in the end it didn't work out. Also, according to me, the album with Olli on vocals is the weakest of the Crashdïet albums. It's not even close to their debut album "Rest In Sleaze". Eventually he wanted to invest his time in Reckless Love only/the band fired him - don't know if there's an official story to exactly what happened in the end. Although I interviewed Crashdïet last summer and speaking of that period, you could see that they weren't happy when thinking about it.

I personally prefer Hardcore Superstar. Obviously I think they're one of the greatest live band ever (which they are!) and I also think they have a better material. "Rest In Sleaze" is a flawless album, and together with Hardcore Superstar's selftitled album (both released in 2005), I consider it one of the best swedish and one of the best sleaze albums of all time. Although Hardcore Superstar has so much more great material, and to me Crashdïet hasn't, even though "Generation Wild" is pretty good. But still, you're in for a treat! I saw Crashdïet at Whisky A Go Go this Wednesday (review's comin') and hopefully you won't be disappointed. They are great live too, Eric Young is one of my favorite drummers and Simon Cruz sounded really good. Hope you'll enjoy the show! And let's hope Hardcore Superstar gets over here soon too!
August 18, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKim Nordlund
alice cooper,...Michael Monroe...Hardcore Superstar...amd Sister Sin....Jesus Christ oh Mighty...thats the mother load...what a show that must have been...
I just got home from Seeing operation Rock or something like that....Lynch Mob was really good, looks and sounds as good as ever, it was a sorta unpolished but totally cool rock show...I was hooked after River of Love, always a favourite of mine....then Sebastion Bach came on...I saw Skid Row 6 weeks ago...I will say this right now, if them idiots dont take Bachs invitation to do a tour then they are total idiots...that show FUCKIN ROCKED,...18,...Remember...American Metalhead...I honestly think it could be the one to remeber at the close of 2012, it was that good, I damn near had tears in my eyes from laughter, had his cock perched on the right side of his pants which was really good for the girls, my wife included, he swears better than Vince Neil ever could wish for, all them songs Skid did last month didnt hold a candle to this guy, it was crazy,...what the fuck are the Skids thinking...anyway, I got nothing bad to say about that Bach show, it was too good,...then Cinderella,...I saw them 2 years ago and they were really good, ...tonight I noticed that Toms voice seemed a little higher, it wasnt like the recordings, dont get me wrong they were good, but my ear just didnt catch the music like 2 years ago, maybe an off night,...the music was great though, great setlist, hell I love some of them songs, but all in all, without a doubt, Sebastion Bach single handidly stole that whole show tonight, I havnt seen anything like that in a long while,...well... if Monroe was there he would have been fucked know what I mean!
August 19, 2012 | Unregistered Commentertoddwiggy
Great review! You know it's an awesome post when it's about the state of Glam Metal! I love it when there's a debate about our favorite subject. Of course, I find it laffable that Snoot had to bolux up the discussion by mentioning joker's like Testament. And I quote, "The best band on the bill". Hahaha!!! That is truly comical. Even Testament would tell you in a heartbeat that Alice Cooper is far superior to their band.

There were obviously way more talented bands on the bill, particularly Reckless Love, my personal favorite, contrary to Ms. Norland's opinion.

p.s. Snoot! I will say this -- I just downloaded Testament's cover of "Nobody's Fault", thanks to your tip! It's a great version and one of the funniest things I've ever heard in my life! Also, it's hands down, Testament's best song, for obvious reasons.
August 19, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMetalboy!
Kim, that was a great review. I would love to jump the pond and see one of these European festivals. A bucket list sort of thing for me.

I think Alice Cooper's shows are a routine, and a fairly fun one at that. As he has aged (68 and still chugging along) he has come to rely on the theatrical aspects of his late 80s/early 90s shows more and more. Not really a criticism per se. I've compared other bands to this artist, but I think it fits here as well: he is a shock rock version of Steve Miller. And that is meant as a compliment.

I've never cared for Testament. But Alex Skolnick is an incredible guitarist, metal or otherwise. You might want to check out some of his jazz work with his namesake trio to get a good vibe on his range (and his sense of humor as well).
August 19, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterHim
Metalboy! Testament's got great taste when it comes to covers. Check out Dragon Attack (Queen) and Animal Magnetism (Scorpions) too.
August 19, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSnoot
Thanks for all the kind words! And yes, it's great with these festivals, when you get to see all of your favorite bands together. You should all come to Sweden ;) Although, I'm in the US right now...

Toddwiggy: I know EXACTLY what you mean! I saw Bach at Sweden Rock in June and that was clearly the best show of the fest! Actually that show's the reason for why I'm not entirely sure that Michael Monroe was the best thing this summer - it's a tie between him and Sebastian Bach.
August 19, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKim Nordlund
Also, Toddwiggy: Did Nick Sterling play with Sebastian Bach at the show you recently saw, or did he have another guitarist? Curious about what's going on there, since Nick didn't play the AXS TV show...
August 19, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKim Nordlund
no Kim...Nick Sterling was not playing guitar with Bach, I cant remember the guys name but he was ok!
August 19, 2012 | Unregistered Commentertoddwiggy

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