First, a bit of geo-socio-political background.
The southern part of Luxembourg country is called the Terres Rouges (red earth) and, unsurprisingly, is rich in iron ore. This allowed it to develop a sizable iron and steel industry which, in turn, meant that the country played a significant role in the early Iron and Steel trade agreements, which formed the backbone of what has evolved into the EU. Just in case you ever wondered why Luxembourg was so important in that arena!
The industrial scenery provides the backdrop and setting for the annual Terres Rouges rock festival, which I had the pleasure of attending last weekend.
Arrived about 2 pm in time to hear Torpid, local metal 3 piece. They were followed by Fluyd (pronounced fluid), from - as they facetiously put it - the east coast of Luxembourg. Rather a strange combo of young metallers and what looked like their mum on rock vocals. She did provide much of the early afternoon entertainemnt, though, as she tried to control the sequinned boob-tube she'd unwisely chosen, as gravity pulled it over the seemingly frictionless satin bra she was wearing underneath.
Then An Perl - a strange French blond woman who alternated playing the piano while seated on a bouncy aerobic ball with thrashing an accordion. Next!
Onto the stage came Le Peuple de l'Herbe (the grass people), who combined some virtuoso trumpet playing with fast rap and body music, and really got the crowd warmed up for...
Alien Ant Farm. The set was OK, they played all (both?) their hits, but weren't that exciting. Kept my daughter happy, though.
Next up was the estoteric Icelandic techno house of Gus Gus. What can I say? We repaired to the Coke-tail bar, serving non -alcoholic coke-based cocktails (you probably could have worked that out ) in an inflatable igloo with live DJ and comfy squishy chairs.
Eagle Eye Cherry played a blinder - he's a great musician and singer, and had a fab rapport going with the crowd. My highlight of the day.
11pm. The sky darkened. Sheets of lightning onimously flashed. Staind took to the stage. After a couple of numbers it started to rain. Halfway through 'What would you do?' it bucketed. I mean, it was as if someone had upturned a full bucket of water on the place. Sorry guys, I know it must have been agony to be playing your hearts out while the audience flees the stadium - please don't take it personally.
Struck by the whole 'genteel' atmosphere - yes cops were there, but very low profile. The park and ride facilities were excellent, we never had to wait for a navette to transport us back and forth, the crowd was very well behaved, I didn't see any drunkenness or loud singing or aggro...
According to the running order, they were due on stage at 9.30, so when pilot747 and I arrived at 8.30, leaving time for a beer and possible T shirt purchase, we were rather surprised that they were on their 3rd number1.
Fred Durst is proof of what a modicum of talent and ginormous ambition can achieve. But he is also a great live performer, and I bounced and jumped along with the rest of the crowd2.
Again, impeccable behaviour and civility from the crowd and organisers - when they finished at just before 10 there were 8 buses waiting to start the car park ferrying, and the concert-goers queued patiently and good naturedly in line. Was in my car at 10 past, and in my house within half an hour.
Big thanks to the organisers, the performers, my family for coming with me, my agent...