Hot, hot, hot. The third day of the festival; the feelings about the emotions of the previous day; the temperature in our burning brains and stomachs. Welcome to Reverence’s high voltage.
The first hours of the last day showed several almost-dead people fighting to attend the early shows of that Saturday. We’ve chose to open our ears to music only when THE ALTERED HOURS played in stage Rio. They brought their southern rock melodies even if in a northern outfit. The dicotomy between faster male voiced songs and the enchanted sweet tunes sang by Elaine Howley constructed the body of their performance. There, “Sweet Jelly Roll” was the biggest moment. The guitar melodies erased completely the lack of bass guitar in a presentation where Elaine also pulled out some harsh Echo & the Bunnymen shouts. Before the end still time to taste “Daydream Parade”, in a super balanced final journey. A melodic blast under a yet 34º sun.
But at least in Rio the stage was in the shade. In Praia the conditions were different. But that didn’t stopped FAST EDDIE NELSON from grabbing a surprisingly high number of attentions. Old school rock & roll with fast voice and rhythmic drums that pleased all the ones that came by and stood in front of the stage. There was time for some Tennessee old and fast blues, in a concert where we saw dance, slam and great entertainment. A hell of a summer party in the audience, which we must consider semi-responsible for that good moment. A great final Beatles cover (“All Together”) and a weird banjo guitar marked the ending notes of a good surprise.
Back to Rio, where SAMSARA BLUES EXPERIMENT gave us their psychedelic blues. A concert full of melodious groove, oriental hypnosys and profound clean vocals. They’ve beat all the previous records in terms of audience in Rio during the afternoon. Yes you’ve heard it: afternoon. They probably deserved to play later in the schedule. But still, an entertaining show even if not the striking experience we were expecting. The main reason for that was probably the huge time spent with guitar solos that lowered the general mood. But all & all the faster balanced parts did generate good synchronized collective movements.
It was time to face the main stage. There 10000 RUSSOS were tasting the sweetness of the giant leap they’ve had in their recent career. A non-stopping electric shock-dance parade. Starting with the single “Karl Burns”, they’ve also presented the rest of their most recent effort, already with worldwide distribution through Fuzz Club Records. When the vocals/drummer started playing with his micro he stunned most of the audience, while the psychedelic shots were being fired. True that they work better at night. But they’ve haven’t missed their opportunity to impress. ONE UNIQUE SIGNAL opened our night even if they’ve shown difficulties in opening their show. Well, not exactly. Just that the intro was too long. Eventually their shoegaze riffs grabbed a considerable attention for the rest of a well-balanced show. Four coordinated guitars were aligned with compassed drum kicks, repeating that balancing formula to an increasing exhaustion. The vocals has shown a somber voice leading a Joy Division alike aura that till the end suffered with some guitar defaults.
With Echo Lake’s cancellation we found ourselves more time to be prepared for AMON DUUL II journey. And what a trip it was. The Germans played before a large audience , presenting their old school psych rock. The seventies one. The peculiar figure of Renate Knaup was a must to all the fans, with an impressive presence throughout all the concert. She was joined by six other musicians including two live drums. But the kraut and psychotic rock was introduced to some almost doom moments, making their sound balance between some space seeking melodies. An intergenerational performance, with impressive vitality welcomed by no less impressive audience applause! An anti war timeless manifest.
After such a warm performance it somehow was hard to appreciate the next musical moments. The night concerts proved also that this third day was not as populated as Friday and so the festival ground looked a little emptier. Portuguese metalers LÂMINA were our next choice in stage Praia. Starting with the groovy “Cold Blood” they’ve promised a heavy show. Those first industrial sparks lightened by a furious drummer where accompanied by some enjoyable guitar riffs that raised the general tired mood. Till the end of the show they’ve played several different themes, each one in a different “metal genre”. Despite these many clichés they’ve deserved the audience.
With The Horrors still playing in the main stage we marched towards Rio, joined by an impressive mass of other rockers. The motive? ELECTRIC MOON was playing next. While interviewing them hours earlier they got surprised when we spoke about a significant fan base here. When the stage lights turned on they certainly lost their doubts. Playing under an electric summer full moon the German trio played the most intense show of the weekend. Sober but always new psychedelic rhythms made us balance and dance till the last riff. With the new “Theory of Mind” out recently, several songs appeared much heavier than on record, painting in Doom circles a trip where we almost lost our mind. “Hypnotika” was a real blast. No stage effects were necessary to grab the audience’s attention, with everybody applauding firmly their departure. They should come by more often.
After such an overwhelming moment, Dj Mário Valente presented a huge party in the Dj’s area, inviting everyone to dance. There were bands with less attendees. Then, returning to Praia, MAGIC CASTLES came from Minnesota with their sweet melodies to entertain us and giving already that nostalgic feeling of a festival close to its end.
All & all the Reverence Valada kept its roots, planted last year. Easygoing mood, with no worries, peaceful environment, superb festival ground and 18 hours of music every day. We believe that the number of festival goers was slightly less than last year, especially on Saturday, which had a less appealing band-bill. Psych rock is alive and kicking once next year’s edition is already confirmed. We hope to see you there.
Photo credits courtesy of:
Valentina Erno ( Samsara Blues Experiment;One Unique Signal);
Jorge Pereira ( Amon Dull II; The Altered Hours);
Natacha Monteiro ( Fast Eddie Nelson; Lãmina)
Vera Marmelo (Electric Moon)