Hellfest 2011: the horrible, horrible Coroner and Triptykon scheduling clash

•June 29, 2011 • 4 Comments

Hi, remember me? I used to blog here before my stupid life got too ridiculous. But don’t worry, I fixed it – my partner and I sold our house, our business and most of our possessions and moved to Poland where the vodka is cheap and plentiful, the metal is brutal, and we divide our time between doing things we like and uh… doing other things we like. Semi-retirement rocks.

This post was inspired by the lovely Steff Metal. She posted about the Wacken 2011 lineup and asked her readers what their worst festival scheduling clash was. I tend to get a bit ranty about these kinds of things and the comment box was way too short, so here’s an expanded version of my response.

Hellfest 2011 will be remembered for a number of things, but in my mind, the worst scheduling balls-up of all time will be number one.

When the original schedule was announced, it looked like Swiss thrash legends Coroner – reforming for their first show in 15 years – would be clashing with Bolt Thrower, another legendary thrash band rarely seen live by fans. There was much outrage and in response, the organisers did what should have been a good thing: they changed the schedule.

Unfortunately the change they made was much, much worse: swapping Bolt Thrower with Triptykon meant that the two Swiss bands, both with huge legacies and many, many crossover fans, were on at the same time. Anyone who read this blog last year would know that I’m a tiny bit obsessed with Triptykon. Hence the dilemma.

I was definitely not the only one. On the first day of the festival, wearing my Triptykon hoodie, I was accosted by a drunken man who pointed at my chest and let loose a torrent of French, the only two words I could recognise being the two band names in question. I cut him off with “I know. It’s fucking terrible”. Haltingly he tried to repeat his original statement in English but there was no need: his anguish echoed my own and transcended language barriers.

My new French friend, apologising to the obviously-not-present Tom Warrior, revealed that he had decided he would have to choose Coroner, and that’s when I realised that much was quite obvious. With Triptykon being an active band with a full touring schedule and a stated commitment to record more albums, there would be plenty of opportunities to experience their live show in the future. Coroner, on the other hand, were an unknown quantity, and let’s not forget this was their first performance in 15 years.

Given that Tom Warrior had himself recorded demos with Coroner early on in their career, I figured that he would understand this decision. When I explained this to a friend he joked “what are you going to do, write him a letter of apology?”. Good idea. That’s what this is: my letter of apology. Sorry, Tom.

This story doesn’t end here. I did go to see Coroner. I managed to get reasonably close to the front so I would have a good view. Immediately beforehand, a fireworks show to AC/DC’s For Those About To Rock, We Salute You honoured late French politician and heavy metal supporter Patrick Roy, as well as Ronnie James Dio and Peter Steele. Then there were more fireworks, and then Coroner themselves appeared.

Technically, Coroner looked and sounded great. The guitars and drumming were tight and precise – almost like listening to a recording, only a better quality recording than the Coroner material I’m used to listening to. Given the complexity of the music, the crazy timings and changes, that’s no mean feat to pull off live. The lighting was moody and epic and… I started to get bored.

These were songs I loved. It should have been a momentous experience. That’s when I started to realise that maybe this kind of music wasn’t all that suited to a large festival stage. Or maybe my expectations were overly high. Or maybe they were just not very interesting live. I started wondering about what was going on in the Rock Hard Tent. About halfway through the set I decided to go and find out.

What I found was Triptykon, destroying. I had seen them live the previous year at Summer Breeze, but this was different. The atmosphere in the tent seemed incredibly heavy, oppressively hot even, yet the sound was cold, hollow and bleak – far more raw and “black metal” than their recordings. The pace seemed slowed – although I was there for nearly half the set I think I only heard two, maybe three songs, and Triptykon songs, not the Celtic Frost favourites that I had assumed would close the set, yet despite being intimately acquainted with the two records I could not tell you what the titles of the songs played were. There was inhuman rage in Tom’s voice, and it was mesmerizing. Even the ending of the set seemed serious and ominous – there was no “thank you very much”, only a growl of “Triptykon bows to you” as the band came forward and did just that.

So what was the difference? Was it the stage size, the crowd, my own expectations? Coroner were technically brilliant but lifeless. Triptykon chilled me to the bone, and the half set I saw was unforgettable.

Did I make the right decision? Probably I did. It’s the kind of thing you have to experience for yourself.

2010 in Review; or, what the fuck happened to the Goatlady?

•January 12, 2011 • 2 Comments

During that lovely lull between Christmas and New Year where everyone’s either on holidays or expecting everyone else to be, and pressure to produce anything is next to nil and because it’s hot as fuck here in Australia and sitting the dark listening to music, drinking cold, cold beer and geeking out is pretty much the only way to travel, I was catching up on my feed reading and came across a "2010 roundup" post by the lovely Steff Metal. I was suddenly struck by a thought – didn’t I, also, have a blog, at some point in the distant past?

Just kidding. I hadn’t forgotten about this old place at all. But without degrading this to a “sorry I haven’t posted” post, it has been rather empty and sad lately, hasn’t it? I thought about it some more and thought it would be very remiss of me not to do some kind of round up post. It was, after all, a very epic and exhausting year.

Let’s go month by month, shall we?


Early in January I pondered whether the Soundgarden reunion was a good idea or not. As it turns out, some of you thought yay, some of you thought nay, but in the end it was ok. Chris Cornell has not only stopped pissing on his own legacy, but has even grown some hair back.

Who says rock n’ roll isn’t a positive force?


In February, my birth month, I got all excited about a new Danzig album, Deth Red Sabbaoth. I pre-ordered the first single, On A Wicked Night, on 7” vinyl and then a few weeks later pre-ordered the limited edition boxset of the album which includes the 7” vinyl single (anyone want to buy one? Mint condition). But it’s ok… the album is good. Better than Danzig 6, Danzig 7 and Danzig 8 in my humble opinion. It’s got a real great old-school feel to it, due in part to his extensive use of vintage gear in the recording process as I’ve read in several interviews.


In March I picked up the pace a bit. First I posted my review of Soundwave 2010, which was pretty epic. Although not as epic as the lineup for Soundwave 2011 – but wait, I’m getting ahead of myself…

I then pondered why no one told me they were making a movie about The Runaways. Although at the present time I still haven’t seen the movie, I do own it on Blu-Ray and it’s on the todo list for this week.

My next post for March was an “outtakes” post from my interview with Ruyter Suys of Nashville Pussy. FasterLouder got all “1000 words max” on my arse but she was such a fun person to interview the memorable quotes went way past that, so I figured it was worth sharing. I picked up a copy of their latest album From Hell To Texas when I was in Germany (I don’t think they have distribution down here, unfortunately) and it’s a hard-rocking arse-kick of an album. Highly recommended if you’re in the mood for that kind of thing.

Finally, fan-girl moment of the year came when I got to interview Burt and Dino from Fear Factory, in person, face to face, and on goddamn video. Trippin’ out.


April saw more ruminations on the Soundgarden reunion, a post about The Black Crowes taking an indefinite hiatus, a discussion of religion and music in reference to Behemoth, and a recommendation to any of y’all who are interested in blogging to pick up Steff Metal’s ebook on the topic.

By far the saddest post I’d written all year was about the death of Type O Negative’s Peter Steele. We still miss you Pete.


I got a little ranty about the state of the world today, Dio and god-botherers, and the bloody Australian government. Nothing you wouldn’t expect from me though. I also talked about our plans for metal travel in 2010 – expect the 2011 version of this soon; announced another side-project in the One Million Beers for Metal web site, said RIP to Slipknot’s Paul Gray (would everyone stop dying please?) and talked a bit about what I’d been listening to.


I submitted a public apology to Joey Belladonna for any Anthrax-related ranting I’d done in the past, after hearing his rendition of Man on the Silver Mountain at Dio’s memorial service. And the man himself left a comment which actually seems legit.

I also posted about a fitness class to prepare participants for surviving the zombie apocalypse. Because we all know it’s when the zombie apocalypse comes, not if, right? I also posted some thoughts about the “Big Four” and whether a cinema experience would be worth having. We didn’t go, in the end, and don’t have the Blu-Ray yet although it IS on my “to get” list.


In July I got my Danzig tattoo – thanks to my good mate Ox at On The Edge Tattooing. Looking back at that post has made me realise that Charp never saw fit to make good on his promise to punch me in it. That means I still have that hanging over my head (or neck, as it were). Fortunately he’s buggered off to another state so the chances of him making good are slim.

Also in July, I talked about the reformation of Skunk Anansie (still don’t have that album yet) and the second coming of earthtone9, and posted some awesome photos that we took at the South Fremantle Power Station when my pal Leticia came to visit.


At this point something funny happened. We went to Europe, had an absolute blast at the Wacken, Party.San and Summerbreeze festivals, and somehow I just… stopped posting. Not sure what happened. Too much in general, probably. Anyway, I didn’t touch the blog until…


…when I got quite blog-happy again. First I raved a bit about the No Sleep Til Festival and Megadeth playing Rust In Peace in its entirety. There is a LOT more to that story which will be coming soon – ok a quick spoiler: I got to interview Dave Mustaine, the show I saw was extremely memorable, but other’s reviews were in stark contrast to mine. So I will post them. Like, soon.

Then I talked a bit about the Soundwave lineup. I’ve just realised I promised it would be a multi-part post but never got past the first instalment – but never mind, I’ll get onto that soon.

I posted a book review, which I don’t often do, but it was a really, really interesting and thought-provoking book: The Windup Girl by Paolo Bacigalupi. I got into it so much I read it twice, back to back.
Finally, I raved a bit about Triptykon and the Shatter EP. Again, there’s a lot more to that story coming soon.

October – November – December

It seems my ridiculous schedule caught up with me again and I didn’t have the time to spare or the energy to write. Which makes me sad.
So here we are, with 2011 bolting out the gates. What will this new year hold for your humble Goatlady?

Well, fact is, things have been very hectic the last year or two. And that’s not entirely a good thing – in fact, in many ways it was a very bad thing. It was all entirely of my own doing, of course, but I’m making a concerted effort to change shit up in 2011.

Will this result in more blog posts? This remains to be seen. However, I really do enjoy writing and this is the perfect platform for me to spew my rantings into the world and see what sticks, so I’d like to think that we won’t see a repeat of the great non-event of October – December 2010 in the future.

As always, that’s a threat, not a promise.

Making me incredibly happy: a new Triptykon EP

•September 12, 2010 • 1 Comment


Photo by Axel Jusseit

Seeing Triptykon, the new musical outlet of Hellhammer/Celtic Frost originator Tom G. Warrior, at the Summer Breeze festival in Dinkelsbuhl, Germany just a couple of weeks ago was an awesome experience. They played in the small indoor “Party” stage, and while I’m surprised that they didn’t get a main stage spot, it was a fantastic show. I wasn’t able to get a media pass for that festival unfortunately, so no photos or anything else, only a few notes tapped into my phone during the performance and what’s in my head.

Tom’s new bandmates are, not surprisingly, very good players. They’re also very young and pretty, which makes for an interesting contrast with the main man himself. Eparistera Daimones, which I have on both CD and limited edition awesome sauce vinyl, is one of my favourite albums so far this year.

So… that there will be a new EP, Shatter, released next month is an excellent piece of news indeed. The tracklist includes three new versions of songs recorded during the recording of the ED album, and two live Celtic Frost songs from their Roadburn festival show in April, including Dethroned Emperor with Nocturno Culto on vocals. It will be released digitally, on CD and vinyl.

Unfortunately I can’t seem to find a preorder link anywhere…


Book review: The Windup Girl

•September 10, 2010 • 1 Comment

The Windup Girl

I read some reviews of Paolo Bacigalupi’s science fiction novel The Windup Girl, which won Nebula and Hugo awards and was listed on lots of prestigious best-of lists. The general consensus was that it was brilliant, so in June I bought it as an ebook from WebScription for USD $6, which is crazy cheap (and DRM free to boot, being from a small independent publisher, Night Shade Books). I started reading but was distracted by other things, until just last week on the plane back from Europe I got stuck in and finished it.

Wikipedia has a good summary of the novel’s setting (but don’t read the full article if you’re planning to read the book because it summarizes the plot and the ending):

The Windup Girl is set in the 22nd century: Global Warming has raised the levels of world’s oceans, carbon fuel sources have become depleted, and manually wound springs are used as energy storage devices. Biotechnology is dominant and mega corporations like AgriGen, PurCal and RedStar (called calorie companies) control food production through ‘genehacked’ seeds, and use bioterrorism, private armies and economic hitmen to create markets for their products. Frequent catastrophes, such as deadly and widespread plagues and illness, caused by genetically modified crops and mutant pests, ravage entire populations. The natural genetic seed stock of the world’s plants has been almost completely supplanted by those that are genetically engineered to be sterile.

This world, so foreign and alien yet so very believable, is unveiled slowly – so much so, that in the first half of the novel a great deal of the details pass by without their significance being understood. The second half of the novel is increasingly faster-paced with war and conflict, making the complex who-what-where interactions challenging to follow.

It is, however, incredibly engaging and thought-provoking. I go to the end, closed my reader and after a few minutes of reflection, resolved to start again from the beginning right away so that I could fully appreciate the depths of the story and absorb any subtlety that I had missed. It’s not often that a novel is so good that you want to re-read it immediately.

Emiko, the ‘Windup Girl’ referenced in the title, is fascinating but the theme of genetically engineered humanoids and their place in society is, to me, the less significant idea explored. Far more terrifying and real is the background story where corporations wage agricultural warfare in the old-fashioned quest for the almighty dollar, where corrupt governments let anything slide for the right price – and, as character Yates points out early on, ‘people starve all the same’.

We’re monsters living on a fragile planet, people, but maybe not for the reasons you think. Read The Windup Girl and be very afraid.

Soundwave 2011 lineup: part one

•September 8, 2010 • 1 Comment


Got my tickets to Soundwave 2011 (Perth show). It’s not until March, but there’s plenty to be excited about.

I’m going to take a look at each of the bands I want to see. The list is far too long for one post, so let’s look at the first few (skipping the punk, emo and wtf bands that is)…

Iron Maiden

imageI’ve not kept my general “meh” attitude toward Iron Maiden a secret. But in fact, a large, very popular headliner that I don’t particularly want to see is a very good thing at a festival – it means that more than likely, I won’t have any annoying clashes and there’s a chance I can sneak away early and beat the rush back home. Win all round.

Queens of the Stone Age

imageQueens of the Stone Age are going to be a little hit and miss, I think. I saw them at the Big Day Out a few years back and they were good, but I’m more a fan of their older material and even then, they had an album or two that I wasn’t crazy about. Now they have a whole bunch of albums I’m not really crazy about. So whether I see them or not will come down to timing, I suspect.


imageWhat will be surprising to some is that I’m not all that excited about seeing Slayer either. Yes, they’re awesome. Their live set is always brutal and uncompromising – I’ve seen them a couple of times already so I already know that as a fact.

The problem with Slayer is that their fans tend to be fanatical and often, prone to idiotic behaviour, especially when you get them in groups. At Wacken 2010, one of my mates started making fun of the people screaming "SLAYER!” at every opportunity by yelling it out in a “special” voice with flailing spastic arm movements. Not very politically correct, but very funny under the circumstances, and I don’t think I’ll be able to not think of that next time I hear someone starting “the call”.

The upshot is that when Slayer are playing, I want to stay well back. So if I miss their set as well, I’m not exactly going to cry about it.


imagePrimus? Now this is interesting. I will most definitely be making an effort to see Primus. Where’d they dig them up from anyway? I haven’t heard of Primus doing anything for ages. Years even… time to do some googling I think.


imageSlash’s recent solo album is on the office-friendly rotation list – it’s good old-fashioned rock and roll and hey, this is Slash. The coolest of the cool. Highly recommended – although it will be interesting to see how the songs will sound given that every single track on the album has a guest musician on it and he won’t have he entire entourage in tow.

Rob Zombie

imageI’ve never had the privilege of seeing the venerable Mr Robert Zombie live, and also, I never thought he’d make it out to Australia. His live sets have an awesome reputation though, and I love the last album, so this is something to really look forward to. One of the sets on my absolutely, positively must-see list.

Avenged Sevenfold

imageThis is not a band I like. Like many in the metal world, I’m flummoxed at what Mike Portnoy, drummer extraordinaire and Dream Theatre mastermind, is doing playing with them (replacing James “The Rev” Sullivan, who passed away in late 2009). Does Mike know something no one else does? Is he attempting to be hipster and ironic? Has the whole world gone mad?

Having said that, whether I make an effort to see them or not will depend on scheduling.

Until next time…

I’ll go through more bands in another instalment – for now, I’m exhausted! What are you hanging out to see?

‘No Sleep Til’ Festival: an odd lineup, but did someone say ‘Rust In Peace’?

•September 6, 2010 • 1 Comment


While we were still out on holidays Dave heard the news that Megadeth were playing Australia in December… which, while excellent news, was a little puzzling since they’ve played here already on their last album Endgame. Then we heard it was with punk band NOFX which seemed even more odd. Eventually we got the full story: it’s a festival called No Sleep Til, it’s touring major capitals in AU and NZ including Perth, and Megadeth are performing their classic album Rust In Peace in it’s entirety. My squeals from Germany could probably be heard all the way back in Australia.

We’re back now and I have bought tickets, noting it’s the day after we see Axl Rose and his session musicians at Kwinana Motorplex (or not see them, as seems to often be the case with Gn’R shows). But I can’t help thinking it’s a really weird lineup. I’m not really into most punk music so NOFX and most of the rest of the bands playing don’t really interest me. The obnoxious Aussie in me does kinda like Frenzal Rhomb… Suicide Silence are a little too “core” for my liking… so really, it looks like Katatonia and 3 Inches of Blood are the only other decent metal bands on the bill.

As Dave pointed out, hopefully the bands we like will be just before Megadeth so we don’t have to hang around all day!

and sin runs down her back

•July 19, 2010 • 1 Comment


It seems like a million years ago, but in reality was probably about September last year that I decided my next tattoo would be the Danzig demon skull on the back of my neck. If Twitter wasn’t so damn transient I could tell you the exact date, because I announced it in an alcohol-soaked 140-character conversation. But that’s not really the important part of the story.

It took a while to get around to it, schedules being what they are, but now it’s done. The mighty Ox from On The Edge Tattooing (doesn’t he have a great web site?) did the work and the picture above shows the end result, 10 days later and almost completely healed. I’m stoked.

At some point, Al said “if you get a logo of anything tattooed on you, I’m going to punch you in it”. A debate then ensued as to whether the image in question is actually a logo or not, an argument which was not resolved conclusively (I say no, he says yes). He did, however, gracefully allow that he could wait until the tattoo was healed before administering the punching. I’m bracing myself for it any day now, but I feel it’s an ok compromise.

The title of this post is a line from She Rides, off the first self-titled Danzig album (the album bearing the demon-goat-horned-skull silhouette on the cover).  You can listen to the song below. I could have embedded the official video clip but it features some cheesy ‘80s arse and I don’t really want that all over my blog, you know? But it’s a great song and it sounded kind of appropriate.


Heritage site: keep out

•July 15, 2010 • 3 Comments

Back in about 2003, we were at the filming of the video clip for Fear Factory’s Cyberwaste. I’ve talked about it before, but just to summarise it was filmed in the South Fremantle Power Station which was closed down in 1983, and we didn’t realise they didn’t have permission to film there until we were taken inside through a hole in the fence (and later escorted out by the police). Overall it was a pretty fucking cool experience.


I was telling this story to the lovely Biodagar and we thought it would be a blast to go visit the site again when she came to visit Perth. We timed our visit for late afternoon in the hope of getting the gorgeous late afternoon sun from over the ocean but true to form, it was pissing down with rain and miserable as hell.

The place is ridiculously easy to get into – the fence on the beach side is more hole than fence these days – and it’s always full of people, so the “cool and forbidden factor” is basically gone. There were a few groups of people industriously decorating the walls, someone was hefting a drum kit back outside just as we arrived, and a family, complete with kids and a dog, was roaming around upstairs.

Still, the building is hauntingly beautiful in it’s decay and I had some fun taking photos. I even found what was left of the massive Fear Factory logo painted on the ground where the band played.

keep outportalskeleton
glowwetfear factory \m/

The building is in such a severe state of decay that despite all the signs proclaiming it a “heritage site” i don’t think it would be good for pretty much anything these days – it’s too far gone. Rather sad, really.

earthtone9: the return of beard metal

•July 12, 2010 • 1 Comment


Although they have an annoying lower case initial letter, I was a big fan of earthtone9 back in the late ‘90s (I seem to be writing that kind of sentence a lot lately – am I really getting old?). And they’re getting back together, and although it’s not to record new material at the moment, they’re not ruling it out. So yay. Bizarrely, two of the members moved to Australia for a while.

To describe what the band sounded like is difficult, because it’s kind of a mix of what would later become nu-metal and then metalcore, and that just sounds like the worst possible thing ever. But it actually works and don’t forget this band broke up long before everyone and their dog was signing nu-metal and hardcore metal bands to their crappy labels.

earthtone9 then:


earthtone9 now:


The beards, the beards!

I for one would be very interested to hear what an earthtone9 album circa 2010 would sound like. So feel free to go for it, guys.

New Skunk Anansie

•July 6, 2010 • 2 Comments

Skunk Anansie: still pissed off?

I guess it’s not really metal, but I’ve always loved Skunk Anansie – something about their songs just sticks with me. I’ve always thought they are at their best when the songs are angry.

It’s been almost a decade since they broke up – damn, I must be getting old – so news of a new album following their reunion shows last year is big news. Apparently it will be called Wonderlustre and will be released in September.

For a sneak peak at the new stuff, the compilation album released late last year – Smashes and Trashes – has three new songs. I heard the song embedded below for the first time today. Does it have potential? I think it may. It’s an odd video – am I the only one who thinks the CG looks like a trippy educational video on conception? – but it’s pretty heavy and it definitely has hooks.

I’m hoping the new album will have some angry songs. It’s hard for bands to keep that kind of attitude up, especially after so many years, as everyone mellows out and matures – but that’s what I want to hear: rage coming through my speakers that makes my spine tingle and my hair stand on end.

Can they deliver? We’ll see.