The yearly Black Easter event, The Inferno Metal Festival, is on in Oslo. It started yesterday, with the first of four full concert nights at the Rockefeller Music Hall with bands playing on two stages for almost two thousand fans from all over the world. The headliner the first night was Dimmu Borgir.
Every year for some years Willie Nelson has had his own festival at his ranch, Luck, called Luck Reunion. This year was my first, and what a day it was. Sunny weather, lats of great bands, friendly people, and if you wanted to, you could but some of Willie’s Reserve for your own pleasure. (Photo above: Willie Nelson)
Bylarm is the Norwegian showcase festival with a Nordic and international focus. The first festival was arranged in 1998, so this years edition was the twenty second. The mix between seminars and showcases is well tested from festivals like SXSW, and it works well for Bylarm, too. (Photo above: brenn.)
The second half of my favorite photos from 2018 are also taken at different venues and at different times of day. When photographing concerts there are many things to consider, and light or absence of light being maybe the most important. Then there are different degrees of action – some artists jump around, while others ars just standing still. But this makes it even more interesting, no concerts are exactly alike.
This year has also been a good year for concert photography. I have attended eleven festivals and forty five different concerts, totaling more than two hundred and eighty concerts altogether. The concerts have been a good mix of styles, from different sub-genres in metal, through pop, rock, singer songwriter to Serbian pop and Argentinian tango. Here is the first batch of my own personal favorites from 2018.
The Blues in Hell Festival has been a yearly tradition for me since the mid 90’s. The festival is held at Hell, a small place by the airport outside of Trondheim, Norway, and except for three years when it was called Hell Music Fest and the repertoar was pop/rock/hip hop, the festival has been true to the blues roots all the time. Being a smaller festival, they have also presented interesting and great artists a bit outside of the most commercial ones. (Photo above: The winner of the Blues in Hell Award, Jan Erik Moe)
Midgardsblot is a unique festival in that it combines two cultures that you shouldn’t think had too much in common – the extreme metal and the viking communities. But this happened for the fourth year last weekend at the Midgard viking center at Borre in Norway, and what a weekend it was! (Photo above: Dimmu Borgir)
The last day at Øyafestivalen starts early, and the last band stops at 11 PM, which means ten hours of music from six stages. Twenty eight bands and artists plus book talks and artist interviews. And after the last act has finished, the party continues at clubs in Oslo, like the other three nights. With the club day Tuesday before the festival venue opens, much more than a hundred bands and artists have presented themselves for their fans. (Photo above: Patti Smith)
Friday at Øya had sun, but a heavy wind that threatened many of the constructions at the venue. The organizers had torn down the covers on the fences around the venue to avoid the wind. Luckily nothing happened, and the fans had a good time this day, too. Personally I saw seven bands and artists, five of them female. (Photo above: St. Vincent)
While Wednesday had scattered rain and humid weather, was Thursday sunny and warm. As usual, the venue filled gradually up, but still there was a good crowd to see the first bands. The big headliner Kendrick Lamar had banned photography. None of the other artists had contracts or banned photography, so there were plenty of opportunities to get some good shots without photographing Lamar. (Photo above: Nergal from Behemoth)