The second festival day at Wacken Open Air gave fans, bands and crews the opportunity to take a deep breath: From Thursday noon on there was only a little rain, and even some lovely sunshine. Finally!
Except for only a few delays, the program ran smoothly, so that the metalheads could celebrate their metal party with muddy shoes but smiling faces. Police and emergency services also reported calm festival operations.
Highlights on the big stages included the headlining shows of German metal institutions Kreator and Helloween, as well as performances by Hammerfall, Uriah Heep and the iconic W:O:A band Skyline; Abbath were a highlight of the “Night To Dismember”. In the afternoon, Electric Callboy had already delivered an exclusive DJ set at the Krombacher Stammtisch. Fortunately, three of the performances for Wacken Metal Battle, the festival’s newcomer contest, that had to be cancelled the day before could be made up for: Argentina, Latvia and France.
Meanwhile in the newly created Wacken Unit Area, where fans, bands, media and people from all areas of the music business can meet, the power metal band Rage played a rousing surprise concert on a small stage. The other program in this area included an amusing round of talks about the TV series “Legend of Wacken” with director Lars Jessen, actor Aurel Manthei and the two festival organizers Thomas Jensen and Holger Hübner.
Since Thursday, “Festival Today”, the elaborately produced W:O:A newspaper, is available for download in German and English via the Wacken homepage. As every year, the printed version was distributed widely in the region and on the grounds at the beginning of the event; a second edition will be published on Sunday.
All in all, Thursday proved to be an enjoyable festival day for metalheads, artists and performers from all over the world and the international W:O:A crew despite sometimes still difficult conditions.
Tonight’s motto will be: “Up the irons!”! With the legendary Iron Maiden, one of the most influential bands in heavy metal history, will return to the Holy Ground for the fourth time. Furthermore, Megadeth, Santiano, Lord Of The Lost and countless other acts will play on the nine stages.
More info in W:O:A 2023 is available from www.wacken.com