There are few things as exciting as knowing that youâ€™ll be seeing one of your favourite bands live,Â and recently (read â€śa while ago nowâ€ť) I was lucky enough to get to do just that. The Eagles ofÂ Death Metal jumped a big olâ€™ metal bird and made their way down to the southern tip of Africa forÂ Oppikoppi, luckily, they came to say hi in Cape Town as well.
One Night in Cape Town was presented by Hilltop Live and with a lineup consisting of 90% ofÂ Oppikoppiâ€™s international acts, supported by local heroes, Van Coke Kartel, it really was a prettyÂ fantastic way to spend a public holiday. We made our way to the Grand West Arena for some dayÂ time rock & roll and I am very happy to say that I was very impressed.
(Iâ€™ll just get this out of the way now, I left after Eagles of Death Metal, for no other reason that noneÂ of the other bands really appeal to me, and I couldnâ€™t really give you a fair assessment of what wentÂ down because of that.)
So letâ€™s start at the beginning. Van Coke Kartel came out to a pretty empty Arena, but that didnâ€™tÂ stop them rocking the hell out. Iâ€™ve not seen them in quite some time and I was very impressed byÂ how tight they are, and what a fantastic element Jedd gives to their live shows. The guys didnâ€™t missÂ a beat, and playing in such a tough slot, I was thoroughly impressed with their set, they played theÂ songs I knew, they played some I didnâ€™t, and they played them all at 110%, there really isnâ€™t muchÂ more a band can do, mooi so ouens.
After VCK Kongos took the stage and the local, turned international, band may not be to my taste,Â but I can say this, theyâ€™re tight on stage. Itâ€™s a hard thing to keep the attention of those in the crowdÂ who arenâ€™t fans of your music, or those who donâ€™t know your music, but Kongos basslines sortedÂ that out, quick snap. They have some foot-stompers, that is for damn sure. I missed the last bit ofÂ the Kongos set though, but only because I had a meet and greet with those Eagles of Death Metal.
Now, I am not good at meeting people I admire, and letâ€™s face it, Boots Electric (Jesse Hughes fromÂ EODM) is unquestionably someone I admire. His brand of stripped down, fun, fast and frantic rockÂ and roll is so far up my alley, we may as well be neighours. As it turns out, heâ€™s a pretty rad guy too,Â the entire band actually comprises of friendly dudes.
The meet and greet started a little awkwardly, but as soon as the cooler box full of Millerâ€™s wasÂ brought it, the mood lifted, everyone went into â€śnormal humanâ€ť mode and we stood around,Â chatted about being in Africa and took some photos. Photos in which I wish I had taken more care toÂ not look fucking stupid, but hey, I did say I was bad at meeting people I admire.
After hanging out with the guys for about half an hour we made our way back the Arena, and EODMÂ took the stage. It wasnâ€™t long after they took the stage that they destroyed it. They came, they saw,Â they conquered. It was fast, bright, loud and Hughesâ€™ enthusiasm was infectious, everyone wasÂ smiling, he was constantly gushing about how much he loved the crowd (who by the fourth songÂ were losing their minds) and I donâ€™t think there was anyone present who didnâ€™t enjoy the show.
As I said, I did a ninja after the EODM, so canâ€™t comment on the rest of the night, but my goodness,Â I donâ€™t know how anything was going to top that day. So I donâ€™t see it as missing out, I see it asÂ quitting while I was ahead.