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Castle Party 2016

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Every year, in the middle of the summer, very small town in Poland called Bolków becomes a destination for the fans of darkness. Some of them come here to listen to music, some to meet old friends or get to know new ones, there are also those who come to present their new outfits and to be photographed. Different peple, different needs. However, all of this becomes an entity under the headline of Castle Party Festival - the event which constitutes something different to everyone and for all of us it is the same thing - no matter what is our reason to come here, this is the event we wait for the whole year.
This year the gathering of gothic fans took place from 28th July to 31st July. Traditionally the festival was opened on Thursday in former evangelical church on the so called small stage. Although the biggest Thursday dilemma was wheather we all fit into the church during XIII.Stoleti concert or not, what had happened before the Czechs appeared on the stage, is also worth paying attention to. The first concert of this year's edition of Castle Party was given by Polish band Nonamen playing music which may be described as a mixture of different subgenres of metal. The violin makes it sound more charming. The vocal is interesting, however the whole impression is nothing special. So that's how we started. The next project is Cemetery Of Scream. Darkness, sadness and depression plus heavy playing with some feel of danger. A little bit differennt atmosphere is created by Monolight, the vocal is calmer and guitat playing is accompanied by electronics. It is more spacious and melodious. And that would be all Polish bands for that day. The stage now belongs to witches from Finnland and the witchcraft starts as well as dances with devils. Two Witches has almost 30 year story behind them and that was their first time in Poland. Castle Party is a perfect place for bands like this. That's not the end of diabolic accents for the day. The Devil &The Universe evoked different reactions. Some of the people were enchanted, some didn't like it very much, some were just curious. The musicians appeared in the goats masks and hoods. In the background we could see sacrilegious visualisations. The music was rhythmical and ritual creating a kind of a trance. Lack of vocal made it even more intriguing. Near Earth Orbit is a project of Artaud Seth and it takes us for dark intergalactic journays, meetings with unearthly creatures. And finally XIII.Stoleti. The church was full. There was a considerable crowd although it depended on the place you managed to occupy. We could listen to all band's classics including "Elisabeth". The audience seemed satisfied, Petr Štěpán somehow less, perhaps it was too hot for him too. He played the encore anyway. And that's how Thursday concerts ended.
Friday's stage mostly belonged to Polish projects. Dogs In Trees threw their concert as the first ones and they did it in a cold an electronic way. Radogost changes the atmosphere into folk metal one and it's true to say thdeathcamp at such a folk accents suits perfectly the castle venue. Hypnotising and electrifying was the concert played by Das Moon. Maybe not that bright as the band's members outfits but still. Deathcamp Project returns after a break enjoying their first time with live drums and firts time with a new drummer Paulina. Plus an anniversary because the band played for the first time at Castle exactly ten years ago. They didn't disappoint and proved their great form. The next concert was long awaited and full of sentiments. After many years Moonlight decided to come back, although lots of us were sure we're not going to see them again. It was a great concerts and great songs in new arrangemets plus a brand new one in totally different style. Maja herself said she was criticised for this one but changes are good sometimes and Moonlight proved to be awesome even after so many years. The type of music that Xandria plays has a lot of opponents in Bolków (but what does not have them?). However, it is just a fact that their concerts was watched by lots and lots of enthusiastic people. The concert was enjoyable and professional and the charismatic vocalist had a great contact with the audience. She was even given the Polish flag. The last concert of the day was played by Clan Of Xymox. It was very atmospheric and somehow unreal and the same way as "Emily" they made our "life complete." Unfortunately it's still impossible to be in two places at the same time so if we talk about church concerts I can only repeat after the audience that the concert of Furia was worth taking part in.
Saturday was dominated by the countdown and waiting for the concert of Fields Of The Nephilim. The darkest goths had been waiting for this one for twenty three years. However, the concerts were started by Tranquilizer. Very atmospheric kind of playing. Then The Cuts, much more in a rock tone. And The Spiritual Bat with a very successful concert although the sun was not very nice for the bats. Blindead with the new vocalist, as usual, dark and seductive. They have this weird power to make you enter the darkest spheres of the world which is much easier to experience during club concerts but still very good performance. Leæther Strip was a totally different story. Danceable and energetic. Everybody seemed to feel it apart from the keyboardist. Artaud Seth visits Bolków pretty often. This time with Garden Of Delight to play one of the three concerts celebrating their 25th anniversary. Dark and threatening were the sounds of the lost paradise. We're not going far from biblical imagery. The giants are on the stage. The Fields Of The Nephilim. The dream came true for many. Although the concert didn't last as long as we would like to, every single second was satisfying. Two encores and it's over. 
On Sunday it turned out that festival's stage is too small for some. But starting from the beginning. The first project of the day was This Cold, who spontaneously played also on Saturday on Bolków's market square. Soon after them the biggest volcano of energy ever, namely Spanish Larva. He was so electrified he jumped from the stage and joined the audience to dance with them.Also the vocalist of Skeletal Family left the stage to be closer to the audience. The band proved their power and energy despite the long career behind them. Absolute Body Control kept the danceable rhythm but in a much more minimalistic way. The characteristic moevemnts of Dirk Ivens made it hard not to stare at him. De/Vision made the audience move too but this time in a quite pleasant way with their soft sounds. They definitely synchronised with the fans. After this concert there was a special break to honor the people who have been working on the festival for over twenty years. This edition was special because it took place in Bolków Castle for exactly twenty years and for twenty three years in total. So all the people who worked for the festival from the very beginning were given a commemorative T-shirt. The last concert of this edition was played by Closterkeller. And here we have another anniversary. Anja and the band played in Bolków ten times and that is why she was also given a T-shirt to make her remember. The concert itself was atmospheric, based mostly on the material from "Nero" album. Speaking of the church surely Sexy Suicide deserves to be mentioned as the band with lots of potential and bringing something new and fresh to the stage.
As we all know, Castle Party is not only about concerts. There is also already famous Pool Party, the gathering of steampunk fans, after parties in clubs. This year the knights prepared a small exhibition of medieval tortures and a coffin for tired goths to lie in for a moment. Time flies. Castle Party 2016 is over. There's nonthing left but to wait for the next edition. Saty Dark!
Translator: morrigan
Add date: 2016-08-04 / Live reports

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