Ramfest 2011

CAPE TOWN: Nekkies Holiday Resort, Worcester: 4 – 6 March
One South Africa’s Ultimate Rock Festivals.

The healthy being craves an occasional wildness, a jolt from
normality, a sharpening of the edge of appetite, his own little festival of
Saturnalia, a brief excursion from his way of life.

Robert Maclver quotes

A weekend of REAL ALTERNATE MUSIC! The CT leg of Ramfest V was a monster winner!

Pre-sale people kicked off the killer weekend on Thursday already surrounded by masses of tents, foodstalls, plenty booze, band merch and the lush river-side views and drunk people!

It was the valhalla of festivals from a logistics point of view! One can’t emphasise the excellent organisation enough! For the entire weekend there were clean toilet-paper filled bathrooms with hot and cold water showers. Woop! Woop! Personal favourite: Hydration station! -And the sprinklers at all the bars (where you hardly had to wait to get a drink!)
The stages were ready to roll on Friday afternoon after some refreshing in the river or pool.

The fifth year of RAMfest boasted 3 stages and a bigger dance floor than before. Much talked about were the two international bands: Alkaline Trio (USA) and Funeral for a Friend (UK). Also local legendary acts like Die Antwoord, Van Coke Kartel and Zebra and Giraffe play in all the cities.

Cape Town got the very best Ramfest line-up, made complete by absolutely killer local bands! On the Main Stage Mr Cat and the Jackal and their giant head replicas rocked the party with a carnie folk take on rock. The Great Apes sexily smashed and crashed their way around the mainstage in true rock’nroll style and notably brilliant performances by Not My Dog, Zebra and Giraffe, Isochronous and The Sleepers cemented the idea that local bands this year absolutely thrashed the imported acts. Alkaline Trio was by far the most disappointing act of the festival. There was quite a lot of hype about the two international acts and neither of them blew me away. I did enjoy the Funeral for a Friend set more purely because of their ego and energy.
 Clearly they were digging themselves. (Perhaps a bit more than the crowd who hardly moved (though there was a fair bit of hand-raising near the beginning of their set). Still, they were decent. A very pleasant surprise was how tight Van Coke Kartel were! They really had a great show and the crowds knew it! Die Aantwoord carried on in their own very special way thrilling fans and offending critics like they fokken-terrets-se-poes always do.
The Alternate Stage was contrastingly buzzing with energy. Metal minded musos like Mind Assault, Symphonic Schizophrenia, Juggernaught, Enmity (who threw in a most phenominal cover), and A Walk with the Wicked had the metal tent rocking like a hurricane, windmilling and moshing. Tartan-clad wild-hearts Haggis & Bong had their bagpipes and balls to the wall making some interesting noise. And then there was Sabretooth. One of the clear highlights of the festival. Lightning-fast guitars, drums and keys. Vocalist Mauri Moncada on top form rocked Van Halen’s ‘JUMP! ‘and (after a roaring call for more) a Steel Panther cover! The band had the crowd going mental!
The Pope apparently has not heard of the electro stage. When all the hype and hysteria of the main stage and alternate stage came to an end the Electronic stage kept the dance beats and epillepsie lights pumping right through the wee hours of the morn with winners like Toby2Shoes, Ill Tastic, El Gordo, Haezer, TOM DELUXX (FRA), and more. It was a vibrant space pulling crowds of fucked people towards the lights.
An epic festival! Well organised, well attended, well worth it!
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