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Jera On Air festival - The little brother of Groezrock
The last couple of years the line-up for Jera On Air is getting bigger and better. You might say they are aiming at being the dutch answer of Groezrock or at least being their little brother.  Last year they hosted Parkway Drive, A Day To Remember, Asking Alexandria and this years edition featured names like Hatebreed, Dropkick Murphy’s, Born From Pain, Emmure, Against Me! and Letlive. But that’s not all. Next to all the performances there are some area’s  where DJ’s are spinning the wheels of steel all day long. Add some food stands a couple of bars and some other stands where they sell merchandise and you’ll have the total picture. Al squeezed into a couple of acres of land.

First band of the day for us is the Dutch band The Charm The Fury. They’ve played at Jera On Air before as upcoming talents and by now they’re definitely past that stage. The band kicks everyone awake in a pleasant, energetic way and especially for the visitors who have problems with coping with their alcohol consumption of the night before this is a great way to get back at their game. After a couple of songs even the (circle) pit started to get more and more attendees and in the reasonably filled tent the bar has been set high for the rest of the day. The sound wasn’t optimal with some big reverb going on, but this fortunately didn’t have an effect on the band. (Gilles)
Antillectual is probably one of the hardest working Dutch bands. Ever since 2005 these guys are working on global domination the old fashion way, indeed by lot’s of touring. This is probably one of the reasons that another band member is onstage since the last time that I witnessed them last October. Luckily the level of quality is maintained by the band, which means that although it is quite early on this Saturday of Jera On Air a small party was build onstage and in front of the stage. The band, that holds on to their ideals, has been always clear about their message and that results in a free vegetarian burger at ‘Just Like Your Mom’ catering when you’re wearing their shirt today. (Niamen)
Gnarwolves, a band that played every corner in every city of the UK and now they’re focusing on the European mainland. With a big DIY-approach these guys just live it and that shows. They produced some melodic and catchy punk rock, but it lacked a response of the crowd. Eventually it felt a little bit like an after-dinner dip, a bit washed out and so we went for some serious crate-digging at the merchandise stands. (Gilles)
Like my partner in crime just said, after Gnarwolves we decided to walk around the festival site since we weren’t able to get a proper look at the entire area before. During this stroll in the park we encountered several nice spots like the Bavaria Bottle Bar, the merchandise tent, the birdsnest (with reggae music) and the Punkbrock Bar with karaoke. Indeed punkrock karaoke! Sing Along Riot has a pretty easy concept. Just 4 guys onstage that play the instruments and you take on the vocals. With songs from Blink 182, Dead Kennedy’s, Comeback Kid and a lot more it results in a pretty cool party that was repeated two times during the day.
Upnext was Emmure. A band that has the name of being superly intense brutal. Or at least that’s what the program booklet tells us. Well to be honest with you, personally I consider Frankie Palmieri as a dick. But since I’m very professional I did attend to their show.
With the release of their latest album, Eternal Enemies, in their pockets they are trying to widen their fanbase. The typical breakdown metalcore is something that you’ll see every where these days. But the main reason of standing out from all the other mediocre metalcore bands is probably the attitude Emmure, or should I say Frankie, has. Which is probably the reason why the band is so popular with fifteen year old kids. As for the show itself it sucked big time. The sound was one big lumb of noise where you hardly could separate the bass guitar from the guitar or the vocals. As for the drums they where way to loud and overwhelming everything else. The stage presentation is exactly like you would expect from this type of band. Being brutal with an occasional hardcore dance move in between. But since Palmieri was wearing a wardrobe that would fit in vogue magazine I was seriously happy to see them. Onstage with a windbreaker, scarf and tights, yep you do read it well. Tights, ladies and gentlemen that’s br00tal as fuck. (Niamen)
With The Filaments we once again got a British act, but this time it was more of a party than with Gnarwolves. Their mix of ska, punk and hardcore turned a smile on many faces and was a great pre-party for the much anticipated show of Dropkick Murphys, later today. Nothing really spectacular or original, but definitely a nice party. The same goes for Brutality Will Prevail, playing the same stage as The Filaments. They presented their down tempo hardcore with a great dose of energy. Brutality Will Prevail showed what they’re capable of and this resulted in a good performance with great interaction with the crowd. (Gilles)
The last time I witnessed We Came As Romans was on last years edition of the Vans Warped Tour. Back then they didn’t impress me very much and today would be exact the same. Don’t get me wrong the band consists of good musicians and good vocalist who can actually sing. The alternation between the two vocalist works pretty okay but the problem to me is that it all sounds way to smooth. But I can certainly understand why your 15 year old little sister who’s into emocore for six months would really dig this band. (Niamen)
The boston based folkpunkers of Dropkick Murphy’s has always been a party starter, which is probably the reason why this is the only band on the program today that plays over an hour and a half where all the other bands, including Hatebreed, have one hour to present themselves. The folkpunk rage that has been declining for several years now has left us probably two really good bands Floggin Molly and Dropkick. The reason is pretty simple. Both bands know how to throw an awesome party. Their latest effort Signed And Sealed With Blood is rather prominent on their setlist but that doesn’t give in to the great atmosphere that is created by the band. The fans are already familiar with the new material and they are building their own party in front of the stage. After seeing them all this years on festivals I only questioned myself why I didn’t see them in a club before.
The Netherlands houses one of the most appreciated bands of Western European hardcore scene, but not in the Netherlands itself unfortunately. They have some killer tracks and a solid live show, but Born From Pain can’t really manage to fire up the Dutch crowd. This is not on the band, but on the audience. With especially singer Rob really giving all, but with a crowd that just doesn’t really respond. Too bad, they deserve more. (Gilles)
I didn’t know Against Me! prior to this festival and when walking to the main tent I came to the understanding I wasn’t the only one. With the tent being filled for just 1/3, or maybe even less, this wasn’t really encouraging for my expectations. Listening to their so called rebellious punk rock for a couple of songs I couldn’t really think of something I liked about this show. Their music was just mediocre and nothing outstanding, there was no movement in the audience whatsoever and the sun was still shining bright, so the party was outside with some DJs spinning at different places on the festival ground (Gilles)
First Blood knows how to give a flaming hardcore gig, but today they weren’t on top of their game. Sure their songs were killer and singer Carl Schwartz did a good job entertaining the crowd, but they weren’t as furious as they could be. Still highly enjoyable show with especially the songs from their 2006 record Killafornia. Furthermore I have to mention they had both the ugliest and funniest merch of the whole festival, but I’ll definitely have to give them point for creativity. (Gilles)
The award for best live-show of this fest goes to Letlive.! Haven’t seen another band perform with this level of energy and this kind of passion. Singer Jason limped with a taped knee on stage prior to the first song, but judging from his stage act the adrenaline was a great painkiller. Besides the performance, also the songs themselves stood out. They make one of the strongest post-hardcore songs at the moment and both on record as on stage it has the power and intensity to impress. Only downside of the show was the tent that was far from full, but this fortunately didn’t hold these guys back. (Gilles)
When you look back in our database you would see that my fellow editor Gilles is the real Hatebreed fan on our site. But since he had the urge of doing some serious hardcore slam dancing moves like, Picking Up The Change, The Lawnmoyer or the Two-Step I told him I would do this part of the review. With the release of their latest effort Divinity Of Purpose in their pocket they have been touring across the globe ever since. To be honest Hatebreed has never been a band that would sell a lot of albums without performing live. Something that Jamey Jasta is well aware off. So across the years he gathered some of the finest musicians he could find around him and led them across the world aiming for perfection, and he got pretty close to it. To cut the story short. You know what you get when you attend a Hatebreed show. A superpumped Jamey Jasta playing every song like it’s his last. Backed by a tight ass band that pushes themselves to the limit. This evening was an exception to this, during a nice mixture of new and old material I questioned myself if they would be able of closing down one of the major stages on a big metal festival. Well maybe in the future we will see.