Roskilde Festival 2004, day 4 (in English)

The Von Bondies from Detroit played the Odeon stage: Oh my – more retro garage rock of the massively noisy and uncompromising kind. They do have a good (almost danceable) groove going at times, but to often they fall back into a grungy blues feel.

Canadian Broken Social Scene play against all odds: Their complex chords, noisy sound and strange melodies could easily turn them into an introvert shoegazer band. But their obvious joy of playing generates an energy that breaks down the preconceptions of the audience. Different and very impressive – but I lost track of how many people are in this band…

Another eagerly awaited newcomer, !!! (pronounced “chk chk chk”) played the Odeon Stage, and they lived up to expectations: Imagine The Happy Mondays with a drum machine – or Frankie goes to Hollywood meets The Stone Roses – or… Pure energy, pure rhythm, pure lust for life! Check these guys out, if you get the chance!

Watching Electrelane at the Pavillion stage, I realized why some people hate indie rock: Completely static, tuneless and noisy – and delivered with the sort of introvert arrogance that has never won over any audience. Still, these girls are very young, and hopefully, one day their determination will result in something worthwhile.

Having heard their latest, impressive but somewhat overblown album, I was curious to see what Muse would be like live. To my surprise, they blew me away: Powerful, emotional, almost hymn-like songs, moving from soft piano backing to sharp metal-like riffs. And always that voice, cutting through the music, turning tales of modern alienation into soaring melodies. Chilling!

Danish Baby Woodrose closed the Orange stage on Sunday night. As you may have noticed, retro garage rock usually leaves me bored to death. But although Baby Woodrose is the main Danish supplier of this genre, they’re also just that bit better than the rest: Recognizable tunes, kicking guitar – and unlike many garage bands, they even know how to master the art of dynamics! For a rock’n’roll farewell party, this was probably just the thing. Their guest acts didn’t make much of a difference – except for two songs by original Danish rock’n’roll legend Peter Belli.

Before I went home, I checked out the phenomenon of Scissor Sisters. Or rather, I expected to see a phenomenon, but saw just a mediocre party band. If you think this is controversial, you must live very far away from the nearest gay bar! Sure, any band who makes fun of Pink Floyd’s Wall of self-pity, deserves my admiration, but their disco-rock sound was surprising un-funky. Maybe I was just too tired to party…

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