Maximus Festival Brazil: a good start for a Brazilian solid metal festivals era
Maximus festival took place in Interlagos autodrome, São Paulo, Brazil, in the last September 7th. The festival brought on stage Rammstein, Marilyn Manson, Bullet for my Valentine and other important names on the metal scene.
The first edition of Maximus Festival Brazil was almost a full success.
In general, all worked out as expected in this big scale festivals. except for some music attractions that proved not to be of interest to the Brazilian fandom.. Nevertheless, Maximus Festival did very well and hopefully started to write another chapter on the Brazilian metal festivals history. Unfortunately this kind of events in Brazilian gathered a not so respectful reputation due to previous festivals that were an absolute disaster: Metal Open Air, in São Luis do Maranhão and Zoombie Ritual, in Rio Negrinho.
Maximus festival is produced by Move Concerts, a big and experienced entertainment company. Fact, that probably contributed to a satisfactory infra structure present at Interlagos. The choice of holding a big event like this in São Paulo was also a strategic decision, in order to allow easier access to fans attending from all Brazilian regions.
Maximus festival first edition proved to be dramatically different from Rock in Rio. Being fully dedicated to metal music and with an aesthetic inspired on the big Metal European festivals, contrasts with Rock in Rio wich always promoted a mix of rhythms and keeps an aesthetic that send us back to the 80’s.
Maximus also distinguishes itself from the other larger Brazilian metal festival, Monsters of Rock. With the newborn festival announcing already the next edition date and place, which will take less in São Paulo, Interlagos on may 20th 2017.
Efficient structure with just a few gaps to cover in the future
To start explaining how well organized Maximus Brazil was, it is important to mention the good amount of information on Interlagos station and at Interlagos surroundings. The sites were well signalized and there was staff providing information on the street to the audience arriving to the festival.
The festival location was easily accessible by cars and taxi, but the public transportation access was not that “piece of cake”. Depending from where you were traveling from, many transfers might be needed to reach the festival location, but still a cheap and efficient option.
Interlagos allowed the festival to build a broad area for the event. And althought, the other big Brazilian festival Lollapalooza also happens on the same location, Maximus Festival managed to occupy way less space. The smaller area was planned to perfectly fit the expected 35.000 people. Since the visitors number was a bit less than that, there was plenty of space to walk around and easily reach the stages.
With two main stages and a smaller one, the festival also managed to organize a mainly non-overlapping schedule, with the exception of “Far from Alaska” and “Shinedown” that played at the same time. Even with a proper amount of stage staff and overall good quality of sound and lights some failures occurred thoughtout “Shinedown” concert. Also minor issues were detected during other concerts not being able to tune down the good vibe of the festival.
The cashless system, a noveltie in Brazilian festivals seemed to work very well. No bad experiences to be noted by the festival visitors. Besides no cash was needed in the festival area, the presence of an ATM machine in the festival surroundings was missed.
The food court and toilets were very acceptable. However, as in many other festivals, remains the wish for other toilets besides the chemical ones. Despite the fact these toilets can turn into a very disgusting experience, as the festival was well planned for the amount of visitors, the area remained quite clean until the end. Needed to highlight that this is also a result of a dedicated cleaning staff. Another remark to the fact that the metal market was too small and hopefully more tents will be present in future editions.
Lineup issues: a real need for adjustments
The headliners for this first Maximus Festival, an one-day format– both in Brazil and Argentina, were Rammstein, Marilyn Manson, Halestorm and Bullet for My Valentine. The line up brought also Disturbed, Hellyeah, Shinedown, Hollywood Undead, Black Stone Cherry, Raveneye, Steve’N’Seagulls and local bands Project 46, Woslom, Ego Kill Talent and Far from Alaska.
Almost all of these bands are known for attracting mainly a younger generation audience, lacking all the classic metal bands to attract a more mature audience. The latter one was partially obtained with the big names as Rammstein and Marilyn Manson, but surely not enough to get, as the organizers claimed, the title of “southamerican Hellfest”. Hellfest, as it is well known, builds the lineup with new, unusual and classical metal bands.
“Hollywood Undead” performed a fairly poor concert, full of samples and the rumors of excessive playback usage made a bad impression for this performance. “Shinedown” saw their performance shortened due to technical failures, fact that contributed to a disappointing performance.
“Disturbed”, “Bullet for My Valentine” and “Black Stone Cherry” were rather dull for some of us. As fair point they gave a great performance and managed to conquer the majority of the Brazilian fans, leading to some euphoric reactions from the audience.
“Marilyn Manson” is becoming less “Manson” and “Marilyn” within the years. No sex act on stage or bibles burning. A very conventional concert if you consider the extravagance observed in the old shows. However, a consistent show was provided, with a good setlist including some of the hits like: Disposable Teens, mObscene, The Dope Show, Sweet Dream and The Beautiful People.
“Hellyeah” gave an energetic concert, making people move, dance and jump on the moshpits. Highlighting the songs X, Demons in the dirty, Say When and Hellyeah that seem written to perform live.
There is no doubt that “Rammstein” was the best show of Maximus Festival Brazil 2016. They used the same setup as in their worldwide tour, including all the fireworks, special effects and varied wardrobe. To complement the stunning visual show a solid setlist was performed. Big sellers like “Rammstein, Reise, Reise”, “Keine Lust”, “Feuer Frei!”, “Du richest so gut”, “Mein Herz brennt”, “Links 2-3-4”, “Ich Will”, “Du hast”, “Sonne”, “Engel” and “Te quiero puta” as encore song. A remarkable performance by “the crazy Germans” that for sure Brazilian crowd missed already
“Halestorm” also gave a solid performance with Izzy Hale proving to be able to “have the guts”. She has a strong rock n roll soul, despite of the pop rock that always flirts with Halestorm’s songs. “Love bites (So do I)” first called out the people’s attention at the festival. Then, Apocalyptic, I like it heavy, Mayhem and I miss the misery crowned them as a band to bring back soon.
“Steve ‘N’ Seagulls” were one of the first big attractions and performed a funny, light and enjoyable concert. The bluegrass versions of classics like “The Trooper” and “Aces High”, both Maiden’s songs made people dance and sing along in a very amused way.
Report by Gracielle Fonseca
Special thanks to: Maximus Festival organization and crew