OFF Festival, Katowice, Poland 4/08/19
In the beginning of august I got to see Daughters not once, but twice in one week. First time at OFF Festival (it was also their first time in Poland, and the very first concert of the European summer tour promoting the fourth album and first in eight years (!), You Won’t Get What You Want; three days later I saw them again in Oslo at Daughters + Beaten To Death / ØyaNatt 2019 / BLÅ.
Daughters played on the last day of the festival, on Experimental Stage. That day I was also working as a runner for Lotic, who played right after them. Therefore, a bit late, but very excited, I sprinted towards the tent. A strong and loud sound-wave hit me already several meters before going out form the backstage area. The Experimental Stage was fully packed.
If you are a big fan or just heard this album once, you may know what to expect – it is a combination of grindcore, noise rock and math metal; it’s a praise to destruction, a complete whole. But what I actually experienced during those two live performances was beyond my expectations.
Alexis is simply demonic on stage. You get those mesmerizing, possessed-wise looks from him, while he jumps on the crowd, bites the microphone, or just takes his clothes off. The music is an open invitation to the industrial feast, a true grindcore ritual, and it will make you dance and jump from the very first song. Already warmed-up and slam dancing crowd seemed to feel the same vibes, as wooden panels groaned under the weight of the mass, even though it was like 30 degrees in the tent. Their performance was a chaotic complement to the music. There was also something very cathartic in it. In a way that they give you a possibility to forget yourself in a true post-punk ritual.
After the concert, I went back to the backstage area to catch band members and thank them for this amazing performance. Together with my cousin, Klara, we’ve caught Alexis outside their coach. There was a huge contrast between what I just saw him doing on the stage, and the first impression I got after we introduced. He told us about their trip to Auschwitz earlier that day and how he was moved by this place, the amount of pain and sorrow gathered there. One thing that felt ironic for him was that when it started to rain, people were hiding in the buildings, under the walls were all those terrible things happened, looking for a shelter in a place which is a symbol of terror and genocide.
Blå, Oslo, Norway (ØyaNatt) 7/08/19
So here I am, after 2-hour flight, another 2 hours in atransfer from the airport to city center and a 20-minute tram ride to the venue. Blå was once again filled with long-haired dudes, tattooed girls or just drunk youngsters who came right from Øyafestivalen, the multi-genre music festival, happening from 6. to 10. august. Daughters played at Øyanatt, which is the concept of the club-concerts of this very festival. Beaten to Death, whose music is described as a melodic grindcore, played as a support. Unfortunately, I didn’t make it on time to hear them. Daughters got up on stage around 20 minutes earlier than planned.
This time I got to stand closer to the stage, ready to experience the ritual all over again. Still shook after the concert at Off Festival, with the same or even bigger excitement, I joined the already moving crowd. In front of me there was a bunch of people pushing each other around, creating a ball of swirling faces, torsos and arms.
Same set and even more interaction with the crowd. Suddenly Alexis took a mobile phone straight from the hands of a guy, who was literally putting the phone in his face while recording. I thought he would throw it or even destroy it on the stage, but instead he put it to his ear, still singing to the mic, and recording all the time. This video must be one hell of a souvenir.
I guess they are born to perform in smaller venues, clubs like Blå are a perfect fit for them. Although, the amazing energy could definitely also be sensed at the festival-gig.
And again, after the show was over, I got this moment of relief. I could probably compare it to the moment of landing, when the plane touches the ground, lifts up for a second and lands again. The very second of this blissfull moment and a thought that you are safe again.
After the concert, I caught a setlist from the sound mixer, grabbed a beer and went backstage to catch guys and say hi. After waiting a while, I got to talk with Gary and then Alexis again.
I was actually on a small mission that night. My Dad has a radio show called Wschodnie Triady and I came up with idea to record our favourite artists saying: This is (name) from (band) and you are listening to…. Imagine his face when I told him the name of the program. What the hell, I won’t say that!, he said laughing. After a quick tutorial and equipment preparation, we recorded a piece of that night, laughing of his funny pronunciation, constantly helping him to say it correctly, but also freely letting him ramble along. And I kept recording it, because it was simply fun. That is how the series This is on my blog was born. Listen for yourself here and check out this page for more!
I pointed at his forehead: You got hurt. And he replied something like: Yeah, I did. But what is pain? Life is a constant pain.
If you get a chance, you should see them performing live, which I recommend during their next tour this year.