Honourable start amongst chaos

If you want to get a party going, invite Waylander. Stage three may have been going since midday for the early birds, but the first more established act started here at 4pm. Which still feels far too early. Last time we caught up with them it was Hammerfest and they triumphed despite being dogged by technical gremlins. This time there are no such issues to stand in the way of Waylander’s powerful Celtic folk metal. The drink is flowing, the crowd is swelling, and ‘Walk With Honour’ is the perfect soundtrack.

This could be the perfect showcase for Waylander’s latest line-up and record, with no competing bands on the bigger stage this time around. And they make a great start as they pound into ‘As The Deities Clash’. The sound is incredibly hypnotic as the whistle weaves it way in and out of the roar and crash of the rest of the band. Just the right mix of melody and heaviness to kick off my weekend.

It’s only a comparatively tiny thirty-five minute set dominated by material from the excellent ‘Honour Amongst Chaos’. There’s surprisingly little chat, just a few awkward disjointed moments between songs. But being Waylander they simply plough straight into the next thundering epic and no one notices. This isn’t their usual dedicated crowd like we saw at Hammerfest; there’s more mute head nodding than furious hair swinging. You get the urge to start daubing the audience with woad and start them chanting, but it could be far worse. It’s not progress, but it’s not a disaster.

Ending with the rousing ‘Born To The Fight’ Waylander leave us elated and thoroughly ready to continue the drinking and merriment well into the evening. Here’s to them returning again in the future…