Locations: Db’s, Utrecht & Hall of Fame, Tilburg (The Netherlands)
By: Sabine van Gameren

Festival De Bestuiving is organized by some musicians who confidentially took control over their own faith. The first day of the festival takes place in Utrecht.

Day 1:

A venue that is quite decorated with plants all over is what you notice first when entering. Only 15 minutes after I entered the venue, the first act was ready to play. This on the smallest in the smokers area.
The Weak and The Strong is a songwriter from Rotterdam. Most of the songs are quite similar in tempo, coming from the same template but with a broken snare on the guitar there’s a need for improvisation. While someone finds him another guitar, the show goes on. Just vocals and that seem to work because the present people have their attention at the performer and stay quiet. When there is another guitar there comes some more tempo in it all and does it all become a bit more playful. What would suit for The Weak and The Strong is the playfulness that songwriter Matthau Mikojan uses in his vocal style. He could certainly do that.

Up next, the first act at the bigger stage, is Zeno Project. A whole lot of electronics got brought to them, a slight link to the industrial scene but rather stick the raw side and makes the music get through you rather than hit you in the face. The performance of this band is more one you like to see later perhaps, but wasn’t that misplaced on this early timeblock into the schedule as the guys made the performance interesting enough to observe anyway. In The darkness of the night this will take you over more.

In the smokers area the band Wave Zero gets ready for their acoustic set. The band is coming from The Netherlands, playing Alternative Rock music. Their acoustic set is calm perhaps a bit lacking of tension building. Towards the end I really hoped for some more intensity but the band stayed more flat and towards the confidential sound of the songs they played from the start. I see this as a missed opportunity as the instrumental part of the music gives enough opportunity for the vocals to go into extremes. The band would play again later this day and that brings another chance to impress.

Cradle FC, a band from Rotterdam, got some people on the venue. This alternative rockband set quite an active performance compared to the bands that had been playing before. The leading role is for vocalist Johan as the rest of the band stays more in the background when it comes to performance. The music has a dark, moody edge reminding of the 70’s greatest from UK. What I missed on intensity at the previous band comes with this band more at a suitable position. The band works more towards climaxes and therefore the music is exciting to observe.

Starlit Sea is a band that comes with some acoustic guitars, occasionally a cello and a pop rock attitude. Quite accessible music, often influenced by life and everyday emotions. A lot of the music seems to be a story of the vocalist, many times hearing the words: I, me etc.
Cello matches quite well in the music, giving it the extra touch it could have and when the band built forth on what they have, perfectionize it and take the songs into diversity the band seems to be right up for some success.

A quick look into the smokers area learns that it now got crowded there. Metro Mortale is playing next and it seems like they had the idea that they need to compensate for the huge amount of smokers by decorating their instruments with plants. Didn’t work, too much smoke for a non smoker so after the first two songs I left, only to promise myself not to turn back in here again today.

I Wish I Knew is up next and it is good to see them again. For the first time in a band contest, now, after about three years, on this festival. Although there was some time in between, the songs they played I recognized from having heard before. The band has its intense moments, In a whirlpool of instrumental climaxes with female vocals that sometimes bring peace and sometimes give it a sharp edge. The driving factor in their music lays sometimes in hands of the instruments, but on other moments it are the vocals that gets you into ecstasy. These Dutch musicians know how to combine this well and make it blend instead of letting it end up in a battle. They are in control.

When it is almost dinnertime, this festival comes with something special. Trashfest has its All Star Band playing covers of famous songs, but De Bestuiving brings All Stars together in jams. Some ended up in chaos, but others are amusing to watch. There are artists that can surely work in a jam and others prefer to have a certain security of something they know and seem to be less happy with being placed in a jam band. An interesting surprise, that maybe went on a little too long to keep it interesting.
After this, Wave Zero came onto the main stage. This time they surprised me by overruling my expectations after seeing the acoustic set. They are able to set something more powerful here and the atmosphere with the viewers might have helped with that.

Something completely different came from Mamuschka which took quite some time for their sound check while the audience was already waiting for them. They instantly remind me to first album of the Danish band Aphrodesia. The band uses different influences, triphop and electronics are all included. This act is something you can perfectly see playing at a dinner show on some luxury cruise ship, the two backup singers make the image complete. The show was quite well, the stage was quite full so much movement just wasn’t possible, yet there was enough going on to stay entertained for the time they played.

The Black Light Parade started some more up tempo and brought the biggest surprise for me during the festival. The British band, coming from Nottingham, plays some psychedelic music. Something that sheers you up or let you easily go with the flow of the band. Take some time to concentrate on the riffs, here and there are very precious moments to hear. These guys also set a nice show. They live in their music when they play and use the stage well. One we keep our eyes on, I have good feelings for their future!

[P.U.T.] is an Industrial/Punk band from France. I found their timeblock quite strange, right after The Black Light Parade and this might have caused the fact that I did not feel like looking at it at all. While they have intense beats, industrial elements that gets me a lot usually. I missed also a bit of variation and unfortunately many people left to the bar while they were playing. Knowing they will play again the next day I hope that they can interest me more the next time, because it ain’t that much of the music that I dislike, but just at that time it felt inappropriate to see them.

Some instrumental music came from Mescaliner, a band coming from the south of The Netherlands. It is quite a static show to watch, seeing musicians sit down on a chair, but nevertheless quite some people seem to enjoy it. The band has an experimental character and also brings warm atmospheric music. Tempo changes are there quite a lot and the band can hold people’s attention quite well which is nice to see. It’s not a band that many people will pay money for to see over and over again but worth seeing when you are around some day.

Last band of the evening is Avacate. The band from UK have been playing in The Netherlands before and so come that the songs they played were known with the audience. Quite a steady rock show comes from them. Most interesting is to see how the instrumental package works with this band. There is something groovy going on and the band uses the instrumentals to drive it all. The female vocals are there to give it all a face. The Brittish have released they album “Ghost Of A Former Self” (review) some time ago, of which they played several songs. They closed the evening and the day after they would play at this festival again.

Day 2:

The second day of this festival took place in Tilburg. In a venue that also gives space to a skatepark for the youngsters and more.

The first act of today was [P.U.T.] As I found them totally misplaced in time the day before I was happy to see them opening this day. It was not really crowded, but the band made a better impression on me. If this was all about the time block they got this time, might not be completely fair to say as they were also a bit more active on the stage.
Second band was one that had not played the day before and that is not something to be sad about. 3faction was their name and they talked a lot during their performance. Uninteresting stuff and nonsense most of the time, rather than playing that pop rock music they are supposedly making. The songs they played were quite simple and were performed messy. Not really the best seen on this festival, can’t be bothered to see them again.

I Wish I Knew makes quite a contrast with the band before and their set seem to be played some more intense than the day before. Nice detail of the show is that there is in this venue a smoke canon that shoots smoke rings towards the stage. Unfortunaly still only few people are in the venue to see the band perform, but the show perfectly closed up to what the band had done before which shows they are consistent in what they do.

Mescaliner played next and although I enjoyed their performance the day before, I could not be bothered to stay focused on their set of this day. A combination of too static and nothing new under the sun did not make it much interesting. The band played well, but I also heard other people complaining about the fact that some of the musicians were sitting while playing. Seems like people do not really appreciate that.
As they were a big surprise yesterday I looked forward seeing The Black Light Parade again. The British guys did not disappoint me at all and this confirms that I won’t get bored seeing this band some more. A little more people had entered the venue and the overall opinion seems to be positive for the band. The somehow dark voice of vocalist Andrew made a deep impression on me and brings that mysterious atmosphere that comes with the music to a highlight. Good they played again this day!

Wave Zero, seen yet again at this festival, played a good set as well. It seems to me that I like this music every time a little more. Music you have to grow into as it seems. Nevertheless the band seemed to feel comfortable on this stage, more than the day before. It looks like they felt more free to just play and this did well for them. Most people in the audience seem to appreciate this band as well.
Cradle FC played a calm compared to the day before, intensity that came with them was still there but the on stage performance seemed more controlled and balanced. The band has been around for various years already, mainly being in the underground scene where this band fits in so perfectly. It ain’t a band for playing huge gigs, it comes to its best in these small stages in an intimate climate.

Just as yesterday, the closing band of the evening was the British band Avacate. A grand finale, the final songs and as soon as the last word is done we get wiped out the venue. Not so fast, people must have said as Avacate was still playing. No one leaves the building before this band is done and left their marks in Tilburg. A good party to close it all off and after that there is only the memory and the photo’s left to look back on this first edition of De Bestuiving.

More photo’s of this event can be found at Sabinevangameren.com

Links:
The Weak and The Strong MySpace
Zeno Project MySpace
Wave Zero MySpace
Cradle FC MySpace
Starlit Sea MySpace
Metro Mortale MySpace
I Wish I Knew MySpace
Mamuschka MySpace
The Black Light Parade MySpace
[P.U.T.] MySpace
Mescaliner MySpace
3faction MySpace
Avacate MySpace
De Bestuiving MySpace